PillCam : שידור חי מהמעי
המוצר: גלולת-מצלמה לביצוע אנדוסקופיה
המפתחים: ד"ר גבריאל עידן החברה: גיוון אימג'ינג
תחילת הפיתוח: 1998
Product: Imaging Capsule for Endoscopy
Developer: Dr. Gavriel Iddan Company: Given Imaging
Year of Foundation: 1998
It is only 26 millimeters long but when it was revealed in 2001, the PillCamTM turned the endoscopy world upside down. That’s what happens when you insert a miniature camera into an ingestible capsule.
The capsule endoscope was conceived following a chance conversation between Dr. Gavriel Iddan, an electro-optic engineer and rocket scientist at Rafael, and his gastroenterologist neighbor. The doctor told of the difficulty in performing an endoscopy in the small intestine. As he explained, the tubes equipped with a camera were inserted into the digestive system via the mouth or the rectum but couldn’t reach the small intestine. In other words, 5-6 meters of the intestine remained out of range, creating difficulty in both diagnosis and treatment.
Dr. Iddan took on the challenge of developing a means that would enable doctors to record pictures of the small intestine and the digestive system in a more precise, patient-friendly manner, without anesthesia or hospitalization. The technological solution he invented was revolutionary: a video camera inserted into an ingestible capsule that films the digestive system while transmitting the pictures via RF technology to a small receiver worn by the patient.
The medtech company Given Imaging was founded in 1998 and endeavored to transform Dr. Iddan’s patent from vision to reality. After receiving the medical authorizations to market the PillCam in 2001, the company became the first in the world to develop practical endoscopy technology by means of a capsule.
The capsule is designed for single use only and is expelled from the body after the examination. The information supplied enables swift diagnosis and provides a solution for a range of problems in the digestive system, including bleeding, infection and cancer.
The success of the PillCam, marketed today in approximately 100 countries, led to the establishment of rival companies around the world. PillCam leads the market and to date has manufactured more than 3 million capsules. Based on this technology, Given Imaging has also developed capsules for pathological diagnosis of other sections of the digestive system, including polyp detection in the colon and bleeding in the GI, thus far without competition.
In 2014, Given Imaging was purchased by Covidien at an estimated value of 1 billion dollars and is today owned by the global Medtronic Corporation. The company’s headquarters and production plant continue to operate from Yokneam Illit.