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Israeli Pill to Replace Colonoscopy

Israeli company receives FDA approval and enters Japanese market as well, set to replace colonoscopies with PillCam technology.
By Ari Yashar
First Publish: 11/13/2013, 11:02 AM

Pills (illustrative)
Pills (illustrative)
Israel news photo: Flash 90

In August Given Imaging, an Israeli medical technology company, received FDA approval for their Pill Cam SB3 which will potentially replace colonoscopies in screening for colorectal cancer.

Furthermore, the company announced Monday that Japan's Central Social Insurance Medical Council has approved reimbursement for Given Imaging's PillCam COLON, according to The Wall Street Journal.

While men and women over 50 are advised to have a colonoscopy every 10 years, No Camels - Israel Innovation News notes that some studies show 50% of Americans over 50 forgo the procedure due to its uncomfortable nature. Sixty percent of colon cancers are diagnosed at later stages of the disease, when only 5% survive the disease more than five years.

Given Imaging is set to change all that with its non-invasive pill-sized camera. The PillCam allows physicians to see the esophagus, colon, and areas of the small intestine, thereby detecting disorders in the gastrointestinal (GI) tract.

The capsule is 11mm by 26mm, containing a mini video camera, light source, batteries, radio and antenna.

A 3D animation shows how the pill works:

Israel21c notes that Japan’s Fujinon, a unit of Fujifilm Holdings Corporation, is reportedly in talks to buy Given Imaging for $750 million, although controlling shareholder Nochi Dankner reportedly won’t sell the company for less than $1 billion.