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GE-Portuguese Journal of Gastroenterology

versión impresa ISSN 2341-4545


AZEVEDO, Richard et al. Can Water Exchange Improve Patient Tolerance in Unsedated Colonoscopy: A Prospective Comparative Study. GE Port J Gastroenterol [online]. 2018, vol.25, n.4, pp.166-174. ISSN 2341-4545.

Background & Aims: Unsedated colonoscopy can be painful, poorly tolerated by patients, and associated with unsatisfactory technical performance. Previous studies report an advantage of water exchange over conventional air insufflation in reducing pain during unsedated colonoscopy. Our goal was to analyze the impact of water exchange colonoscopy on the level of maximum pain reported by patients submitted to unsedated colonoscopy, compared to conventional air insufflation. Methods: We performed a single-center, patient-blinded, prospective randomized comparative study, where patients were either allocated to the water group, in which the method of colonoscopy used was water exchange, or the standard air group, in which the examination was accomplished with air insufflation. Results: A total of 141 patients were randomized, 70 to the water and 71 to the air group. The maximum level of pain reported by patients during unsedated colonoscopy, measured by a numeric scale of pain (0-10), was significantly lower in the water group (3.39 ± 2.32), compared to the air group (4.94 ± 2.10), p < 0.001. The rate of painless colonoscopy was significantly higher in the water group (12.9 vs. 1.4%, p = 0.009). There were no significant differences between the two groups regarding indications for the procedure, quality of bowel preparation, cecal intubation time, withdrawal time, number of position changes, adenoma detection rate, and postprocedural complications. Only the number of abdominal compressions was significantly different, showing that water exchange decreases the number of compressions needed during colonoscopy. Conclusions: Water exchange was a safe and equally effective alternative to conventional unsedated colonoscopy, associated with less intraprocedural pain without impairing key performance measures.

Palabras clave : Colonoscopy; Water exchange; Air insufflations; Sedation; Pain.

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