Double contrast barium enema (overview)

The double contrast barium enema is rapidly being replaced by CT colonography, but remains in some centers for:

  • the detection of polyps and colorectal cancer
  • follow up screening for postoperative colorectal cancer
  • evaluation of diverticular disease
  • failed colonoscopy
  • investigation of non-specific abdominal pain

The barium enema procedure is contraindicated in certain conditions:

Single contrast barium enema is not suitable in these situations because it is less sensitive at detecting small polyps and early changes of inflammatory bowel disease.

The 'double contrast' refers to the use of positive and negative contrast agents to increase the sensitivity of the examination.

The double contrast study is sensitive to visualize mucosal irregularities.

  • positive contrast: barium or barium-like agent, e.g. Gastrografin
  • negative contrast: air or CO2

See also

Siehe auch:
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