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I Have to Swallow What?

Throughout my experience with Crohn’s disease, I have come across some pretty interesting tests. I have had tubes placed in places that they don’t usually go! I have had sounds come from different parts of my body. I have also swallowed a camera as well! If your thinking that I put a big camera in my mouth, whelp, that’s just silly!

During my “extended stay” at Temple hospital, there was a lot of meetings with numerous doctors of the gastrointestinal team. They really wanted to figure out why my bowel was not slowing down. They wanted to figure out why my body was allowing 3,00 milliliters of bile to pour out of my fistula every day! One doctor had an idea. He wasn’t satisfied with the colonoscopy or the endoscopy. He wanted to see how foods digested in my body. Well there was a issue: I wasn’t allowed to eat food.

The doctors decided that I should swallow a pill that had a camera in it. I would be able to use the bathroom, and it would come out then. They would be able to track the pill as it made it through my whole intestinal track. I wasn’t entirely thrilled with the idea that a camera would be in my body, but what did I have to lose? It wasn’t like I was going home so why not! Sure, I ‘ll swallow a pill attached to a camera!

The doctors showed me the camera pill. It was big and bulky. I wondered what it tasted like? Along with the pill, I had to wear a pack around my waist. It looked like a tracking monitor of some sort. It was pretty heavy, and I was not allowed to walk around much in the hospital. The doctors were going to be able to take pictures of the inside of my stomach, to get a clearer picture of what exactly was going on.

I swallowed the big pill with no problem. Over the next day or so, I had to stay in bed, and wait for updates from the doctors. They were able to take many pictures. As day three came and went, the doctors kept visiting me to check if I had seen the camera-pill when I went to the bathroom. I told them, that I have not, and even the fistula on my stomach was not pouring out any cameras! I started to worry! What happens if I never fully digest it? Does it get stuck?

The doctors reassured me that it was normal for it to get stuck somewhere in my stomach. Typical! Only me! So my next question was the obvious one: How do we get the camera out of me? The doctors explained that the next time they plan on doing surgery, they would go in and remove it. They also mentioned that it should not cause any issues, but if it did, we would have to have emergency surgery. So was I satisfied? Not really, and for obvious reasons I wanted this camera out of my body. I also was not happy that the pictures that they camera did take couldn’t really shed any light on what was going on in my body. So the wait continued!

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.


  • Stephy27
    2 years ago

    Where’s the end? I would like the end story/results

  • SusanHU
    2 years ago

    Hi Stephy27 – thank you for your comment! We will pass this along to Paul so he can fill you all in! – Susan ( Team Member)

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