Imaging of the small bowel in Crohn's disease: A review of old and new techniques

Simone Saibeni, Emanuele Rondonotti, Andrea Iozzelli, Luisa Spina, Gian Eugenio Tontini, Flaminia Cavallaro, Camilla Ciscato, Roberto De Franchis, Francesco Sardanelli, Maurizio Vecchi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The investigation of small bowel morphology is often mandatory in many patients with Crohn's disease. Traditional radiological techniques (small bowel enteroclysis and small bowel follow-through) have long been the only suitable methods for this purpose. In recent years, several alternative imaging techniques have been proposed. To review the most recent advances in imaging studies of the small bowel, with particular reference to their possible application in Crohn's disease, we conducted a complete review of the most important studies in which traditional and newer imaging methods were performed and compared in patients with Crohn's disease. Several radiological and endoscopic techniques are now available for the study of the small bowel; each of them is characterized by a distinct profile of favourable and unfavourable features. In some cases, they may also be used as complementary rather than alternative techniques. In everyday practice, the choice of the technique to be used stands upon its availability and a careful evaluation of diagnostic accuracy, clinical usefulness, safety and cost. The recent development of innovative imaging techniques has opened a new and exciting area in the exploration of the small bowel in Crohn's disease patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3279-3287
Number of pages9
JournalWorld Journal of Gastroenterology
Issue number24
Publication statusPublished - Jun 28 2007


  • Computed tomography
  • Crohn's disease
  • Double-balloon endoscopy
  • Imaging techniques
  • Magnetic resonance
  • Small bowel
  • Ultrasonography
  • Video-capsule endoscopy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gastroenterology


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