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The use of optical imaging techniques in the gastrointestinal tract
  1. Sabina Beg1,
  2. Ana Wilson2,
  3. Krish Ragunath1
    1. 1NIHR Biomedical Research Unit in Gastrointestinal and Liver Diseases at Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust and The University of Nottingham, Queens Medical Centre Campus, Nottingham, UK
    2. 2Department of Gastroenterology, Wolfson Unit for Endoscopy, St Mark's hospital, London, UK
    1. Correspondence to Professor Krish Ragunath, Department of Gastroenterology, Digestive Diseases Unit, Nottingham University Hospital, QMC Queen's Medical Centre, Nottingham NG7 2UH, UK; k.ragunath{at}


    With significant advances in the management of gastrointestinal disease there has been a move from diagnosing advanced pathology, to detecting early lesions that are potentially amenable to curative endoscopic treatment. This has required an improvement in diagnostics, with a focus on identifying and characterising subtle mucosal changes. There is great interest in the use of optical technologies to predict histology and enable the formulation of a real-time in vivo diagnosis, a so-called ‘optical biopsy’. The aim of this review is to explore the evidence for the use of the current commercially available imaging techniques in the gastrointestinal tract.


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