Bravo pH Monitoring
Frequent or chronic heartburn may be associated with a serious problem called GERD. Damage caused by GERD can lead to more serious medical problems such as difficulty in swallowing (dysphagia), narrowing of the esophagus (stricture) or Barrett’s esophagus.
Bravo pH monitoring is a minimally invasive test for evaluation of heartburn or related symptoms. The doctor will analyze results from this test to determine what is causing your symptoms and the best treatment to prescribe for you.
The test involves a minature pH capsule, approximately the size of a gelcap, that is attached to your esophagus. Through-out the test period, the Bravo pH capsule measures the pH in the esophagus and transmits the information to a small receiver worn on your belt or waistband, just like a pager or mobile phone.
The capsule takes only moments to place in the esophagus. Then, the test period lasts 48 hours or more, depending on what your doctor requests. The test is catheter-free. The capsule is small so you may eat normally and go about your daily routine.The test will not be interupted as long as the receiver is within three feet of you at all times. You can bathe and get a good night’s sleep because you can place the receiver outside the shower or on your nightstand.
You will be given a diary to write down the times when you have reflux symptoms, when eating, or when lying down.
Several days after the test, the capsule naturally falls off the wall of the esophagus and passes through your digestive tract.
After the test is completed, you return the diary and the Bravo Receiver to your doctor. The test data is then uploaded to a computer, and analyzed by your doctor to diagnose your condition.