Published online May 21, 2013. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v19.i19.2950
Revised: February 18, 2013
Accepted: March 22, 2013
Published online: May 21, 2013
AIM: To study the current application situation of gastrointestinal (GI) endoscopy in mainland China.
METHODS: From 12 August, 2011 to 15 February, 2012, draft questionnaires were sent by e-mail to 289 hospital-based GI endoscopy units, including units with three levels (provincial, prefecture and county level) in mainland China. All the surveyed GI endoscopy units were state-owned and hospital-based. Proportions were compared using χ2 tests. Comparisons between groups were performed using the Mann-Whitney U test. A probability of P < 0.05 was considered to represent a statistically significant difference.
RESULTS: Based on satisfactory replies, 169/279 (60.6%) of units were enrolled in the survey, which covered 28 provinces (90.3%, 28/31) in mainland China. Compared with published survey data, the number of GI endoscopes per unit has increased by nearly three times (from 2.9 to 9.3) in the past decade. About 33 of 169 (19.5%) endoscopy units possessed an X-ray machine, which was mainly owned by provincial endoscopy units (43.2%, 19/44). Video capsule endoscopes, which were almost unavailable ten years ago, were owned by 20.7% (35/169) of GI endoscopy units. Endoscopic submucosal dissection could be performed by 36.4% (19/44) of the provincial units, which was significantly higher than the prefecture level (9.9%, P < 0.01) and county level (0.0%, P < 0.01) units, respectively.
CONCLUSION: Rapid development in GI endoscopy has been made in mainland China, and major diagnostic endoscopes and therapeutic endoscopy procedures are predominantly used in large endoscopy units.
Core tip: Rapid developments in gastrointestinal (GI) endoscopy have taken place in China in the past decade. Major diagnostic endoscopes and therapeutic endoscopy procedures are predominantly confined to large endoscopy units, whereas small and medium units, often perform fewer endoscopic procedures and have less equipment, and are mostly restricted to diagnostic endoscopy. In addition to improvement in GI endoscopy equipment, standard procedures including the standard reprocessing for endoscopy will be the focus in the future in China.