PillCam Poised to Photograph Pizza Perforations

Illustration for article titled PillCam Poised to Photograph Pizza Perforations

Fact: After years of too much pizza and beer, every time I exhale, my esophagus plays Merry Had a Little Lamb. Now PillCams have seen a major upgrade that will allow scientists-who've long been wanting to study my ravaged GI tract in hopes of developing a superior race of competitive eaters-to check out my esophagus and stomach for far longer than the four seconds it usually takes to swallow a pill.

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While details are light on just how the pill manages to hang out in your esophagus for up to 10 minutes even when the patient is sitting up (magnets seem to be involved), the doctor can use a remote to steer the camera armed with LED flash to grab the perfect digestive glamor shots. After that, the pill takes a ride through your stomach and intestines before making a crash water landing.

Clinical trials are already under way. And as unpleasant as having a pill poking away at my chest may sound, it's a lot more enticing than being scoped...from either direction. [fraunhofer via medgadget]

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DISCUSSION

It seems like we could make that technology significantly smaller by now. Maybe it is just the perspective of the photo that makes it look bigger than it really is. Still, I was hoping by 2008 that we would be able to shrink ourselves down and hop in a bus about that size and ride through the body. Then again, I am probably watching too many episodes of the Magic Schoolbus.