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Digestive X-ray small intestine

Examining the small intestine, under fluoroscopy, provides dynamic internal images of the walls of your small intestine, which is between your stomach and your colon (large intestine). It is used to diagnose, among other things, the cause of the following symptoms:

  • Digestive pain
  • Chronic diarrhea
  • Bleeding in the digestive system

Examination procedure

For the procedure, you will be asked to:

  • Drink a large amount of barium (an opaque liquid with a slight taste of vanilla or strawberry)
  • lay down to let the radiologist capture several images of your abdomen

Please note that the total duration of your visit for this examination can vary depending on the speed of your digestion (1 to 4 hours).

Preparing for the Examination

To properly prepare for the examination, please follow the procedure below:

  • The evening before the examination, you should not eat any solid food after 8:00 p.m. However, you may drink water until midnight.
  • On the day of the examination, you should be fasting. You should not smoke or chew gum. However, you can still take your medication with a little water.
  • If you suffer from constipation, we suggest you buy a bottle of Citro-Mag at a drugstore and drink 75 to 150 mL the evening before the examination. Take the product two to three hours before you plan to go to bed, as it will evacuate stool from the colon.

A medical prescription is required to perform this examination.

The costs of this examination are covered by the Régie de l'assurance maladie du Québec (RAMQ).

If your healthcare professional has prescribed this examination or if you have any questions, contact us at 1 833 590-2715.