Smart Pill Breakthrough for IBS Sufferers


There has been a massive breakthrough in the monitoring and treatment of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), a condition that affects many sufferers on a daily basis. The breakthrough comes in the form of a new “smart pill” which patients swallow to allow the activities of the digestive system to be analysed as the pill moves through the gut.
The patient wears a monitor around their waist for a number of days, and this records the speed at which food passes along the colon, as well as the pressure, temperature and acidity in the gut. Thus unlike a capsule endoscopy which records just images, this pill looks at the actual functioning and conditions within the gut.

It is hoped that the pill will result in IBS sufferers being given more tailored treatment, as well as those with other digestive problems being able to access this specific monitoring to their benefit.

Europe’s first users of the SmartPill were doctors at central London’s private Princess Grace Hospital.

Dr Anthony Hobson, a gastro-physiologist, said his clinic has seen patients who have been seeing NHS doctors about their IBS but whose conditions have not always improved.

“This is a real breakthrough and gives many people real hope of a better quality of life by obtaining a more definitive diagnosis,” he said.