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Department of Internal Medicine

Department of Internal Medicine

Diagnostic services

Patient instructions for SmartPill test

You are scheduled for a SmartPill test. The SmartPill capsule is slightly larger than a multivitamin. The SmartPill capsule measures pressure, pH and temperature from within the entire gastrointestinal tract to determine gastric emptying time, combined small and large bowel transit time and total transit time.

Please arrive 30 minutes prior to your appointment for registration. If you are unable to keep your appointment, you must cancel at least 48 hours in advance or you will be referred back to your primary care physician.

DO NOT eat or drink anything prior to your appointment. You must bring the following items the morning of your procedure. There are no substitutions to this standard meal:

  • 1/2 cup egg substitute (e.g. Egg Beaters)
  • 2 slices of bread
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon of strawberry jam
  • 1 can of nutritional drink (e.g. Ensure)

Motility altering medications such as cisapride, domperidone, metoclopramide, macrolides (e.g. Erythromycin, Zithromycin), 5HT4 partial antagonist (Zelnorm), antiemetics, anticholinergics (e.g. Phenergan, Compazine), and 5HT3 antigonists (e.g. Zofran, Kytril) should be stopped 48 hours before the test.

The following medications may alter gastric pH:

  • Proton pump inhibitors should be stopped seven days before test.
  • Histamine blockers, cimetidine (Tagament HB), famotidine (Pepcid AC), ranitidine hydrochloride (Zantac) should be stopped two days before test.

All antacids should be stopped one day before test.

If you have any questions or concerns, please call the GI/MOTILITY unit.  Monday through Friday, 6:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. at (916) 734-5561.

More information about this procedure is available here.