Objective. Capsule endoscopy has shown that non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) can damage the small intestine. The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of NSAIDs enteropathy in subjects indicated for double-balloon endoscopy (DBE). Material and methods. The Japanese Study Group for Double-Balloon Endoscopy (JSG-DBE) established a database for the practical use of DBE in the Japanese population during a 2-year period from 2004 to 2005. Using this database, we identified subjects who had been taking NSAIDs within a month prior to DBE (NSAIDs group) and those free from NSAIDs use (control group). The clinical background and DBE findings were compared between the two groups. Results. Among 1035 patients registered in the JSG-DBE database, 61 subjects were classified as the NSAIDs group and 600 served as the control group. Patients in the NSAIDs group were older (62±18 versus 51±19 years, p<0.0001) and gastrointestinal bleeding was a more frequent indication for DBE (79% versus 44%, p<0.001) compared with in the control group. Non-specific mucosal breaks were detected by DBE in 31 patients in the NSAIDs group (51%) and 29 patients in the control group (5%, p <0.0001). Aspirin was less frequently prescribed and cardiovascular disease was a less frequent indication for NSAIDs use in patients with mucosal breaks than in those without breaks. Conclusions. In the cases indicated for enteroscopy, NSAIDs enteropathy occurred in half of the patients taking NSAIDs. Aspirin seems to be less harmful to the small intestine than other NSAIDs.
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