Ultrasound of the bowel or colonoscopy — which is better?


At present, quite a large number of people seek medical care with complaints of pain in the intestine, bloating, flatulence, indigestion, constipation. Timely diagnosis of intestines for the presence of pathologies in it is a necessary measure for an accurate diagnosis and appointment of adequate treatment. Mainly to conduct research using the following methods: ultrasound of the small intestine and colon, colonoscopy, ultrasound of the rectum. Each of these methods has sufficiently high diagnostic accuracy.

Ultrasonic examination of the bowel

Bowel ultrasound is a method of study based on the use of ultrasonic waves, which gives a complete and clear picture of the status of the upper and lower gastrointestinal tract.

Ultrasonic examination of the bowel involves three main stages of the procedure:

  • Originally researched completely empty the bowel.
  • In the second stage, through the installation of a special catheter into the rectum of the patient is injected a small amount of sterile fluid that serves as a contrast. Further ultrasound examination of the bowel filled with the contrast.
  • At the last stage of the study carried out after removal of fluid from the body.

Comparison of data obtained at each stage of the research on the intestinal tract, it is possible to obtain an overall clinical picture.

Currently, ultrasound is considered the most gentle method of research on the intestinal tract and has a number of advantages over other methods:

  • Evaluation of motility and of the intestine.
  • Due to the fact that the procedure has practically no contraindications, it makes even children under three years of age, whereas other methods are contraindicated.
  • Fast and accurate determination of the cause of pain, flatulence, bloating, digestive disorders.
  • The possibility of diagnosis in the early stages of the disease, which significantly increases the chance for more rapid and successful recovery.
  • The lack of minor wounds and injuries.
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Ultrasound of the rectum

For the study of the rectum and obtain a complete clinical picture, the patient is recommended to do ultrasound of this organ. Namely, ultrasound of the distal intestine (rectum). The procedure is performed in the following way: the patient is a special device, called a rectal sensor. The introduction of this instrument is rectal, that is, it will be placed directly into the rectum.

Due to the fact that the study rectal sensor is doing at a minimum distance from the walls of the rectum, the results of the procedure almost always has the highest precision, they can be used to identify even small changes that have a pathological origin.

Prior to the study rectal sensor can eliminate the need for preparatory manipulation, for example, klishirovannyh, which gives the possibility of ultrasound at any appropriate time.


Colonoscopy is a method of study of the intestine of the patient through use of a special probe equipped with a light source and optics. The specified device is introduced directly into the intestine rectally in length, not exceeding half a meter. As colonoscopy is a method of painful, acceptable use of anesthetic drugs.

Before carrying out such procedures, such as colonoscopy, the patient is recommended to make the procedure of cleansing the intestinal tract. Otherwise, fecal mass, localized in this area will prevent a full and accurate inspection and also make the procedure more painful.

Due to the fact that such procedures, like a colonoscopy, often fraught with occurrence of various complications, such as internal microtrauma and cracks, it is better not to use this method in the case of children and the elderly.

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Which method is better?

On the question: «Which method is more predpochtite: ultrasound or colonoscopy? Which is better?» cannot be answered in monosyllables. Both methods are widely used in modern medical practice, they can be used to determine the presence or absence of pathological changes with the highest accuracy. However, the presence of pain with colonoscopy in diverticular disease make this method less popular.

In addition, ultrasonography often allows a more complete clinical picture of the condition of the internal organs of the patient, as well as to examine the upper gastrointestinal tract, which is practically impossible when using colonoscopy.

Also colonoscopy is dangerous because when using this technique there is a risk of causing microtraumas and cracks of the lining of the intestine and rectum. When conducting research through the application of ultrasonic waves, this aspect can be excluded almost completely.