A new initiative to help diagnose issues with people suffering from internal bleeding to their bottom is set to help people in Teesside – after a health trust launched a new service.
This is after the Trust invested in a state-of-the-art handheld digital endoscope, which takes images and video of the rectum to diagnose the reason behind any bleeding.
The LumenEye means many patient examinations will be as outpatient procedures – with video immediately available for colorectal specialists for diagnosis and treatment planning.
The clinics at the University Hospital of North Tees are being led by consultant surgeons Nicola Maguire and Abdalla Mustafa.
Mr Mustafa said: “This technology means we can run a one-stop clinic where assessment, investigation and possible treatment can be performed at the same setting.
“We can visualise the rectum in an outpatient setting without the need for an endoscopy appointment.
“If any cancer is seen, tissue samples can be taken to expedite diagnosis and patient journey to treatment.
“It means we can quickly diagnose many issues – giving patients that peace of mind by removing the need for many costly and time-wasting investigations.
“It also means we can free up appointments in the endoscopy unit for other patients.”
The system was invented during the pandemic as a way of reducing the need for patients to have to spend unnecessary extra time in hospital.
The images and videos of the rectum it provides can be seen by specialists remotely and mean patients can leave hospital the same day as an outpatient.
Mrs Maguire said: “This new system will allow us to change the way we care for our patients – and shorten the time it takes to make a diagnosis and reduce any worries patients may have.
“It allows us to perform a digital examination while standing straight and talking to the patient.
“We are excited to have it here at the organisation, we are sure that our population across the Tees Valley will benefit from it.
“We look forward to expanding the service further over the coming months and helping more and more of our patients.”