Randomized comparison of 3 different-sized biopsy forceps for quality of sampling in Barrett's esophagus

Susana Gonzalez, Woojin M. Yu, Michael S. Smith, Kristen N. Slack, Heidrun Rotterdam, Julian A. Abrams, Charles J. Lightdale

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


Background Several types of forceps are available for use in sampling Barrett's esophagus (BE). Few data exist with regard to biopsy quality for histologic assessment. Objective To evaluate sampling quality of 3 different forceps in patients with BE. Design Single-center, randomized clinical trial. Patients Consecutive patients with BE undergoing upper endoscopy. Interventions Patients randomized to have biopsy specimens taken with 1 of 3 types of forceps: standard, large capacity, or jumbo. Main Outcome Measurements Specimen adequacy was defined a priori as a well-oriented biopsy sample 2 mm or greater in diameter and with at least muscularis mucosa present. Results A total of 65 patients were enrolled and analyzed (standard forceps, n = 21; large-capacity forceps, n = 21; jumbo forceps, n = 23). Compared with jumbo forceps, a significantly higher proportion of biopsy samples with large-capacity forceps were adequate (37.8% vs 25.2%, P = .002). Of the standard forceps biopsy samples, 31.9% were adequate, which was not significantly different from specimens taken with large-capacity (P = .20) or jumbo (P = .09) forceps. Biopsy specimens taken with jumbo forceps had the largest diameter (median, 3.0 mm vs 2.5 mm [standard] vs 2.8 mm [large capacity]; P = .0001). However, jumbo forceps had the lowest proportion of specimens that were well oriented (overall P = .001). Limitations Heterogeneous patient population precluded dysplasia detection analyses. Conclusions Our results challenge the requirement of jumbo forceps and therapeutic endoscopes to properly perform the Seattle protocol. We found that standard and large-capacity forceps used with standard upper endoscopes produced biopsy samples at least as adequate as those obtained with jumbo forceps and therapeutic endoscopes in patients with BE.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)935-940
Number of pages6
JournalGastrointestinal Endoscopy
Issue number5
StatePublished - Nov 2010
Externally publishedYes


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