The Small Bowel Follow Through studies how your body processes food from the stomach to the small intestine. Patients are scheduled for a small bowel follow through to evaluate conditions such as gastro-esophageal reflux disease (GERD), abdominal pain, nausea or a change in bowel habits.
To prepare, you will be asked not to eat or drink after midnight the night before your exam.
When you arrive for your test, you will be asked to drink 16 ounces of barium, which is about the consistency of a melted milkshake.
After you swallow the barium, the radiologist will watch it travel from your stomach and through your small intestine.
The small bowel follow through can take from 30 minutes to three hours, depending on how long it takes your body to processes the barium. There is no discomfort or side effects for patients having this procedure.
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