Given the growing concerns about infection transmission from use of contaminated reusable duodenoscopes, technological advancements have been made that vary from modifications of existing designs to development of single-use devices.To circumvent mechanical limitations that preclude access to critical areas of a duodenoscope to perform thorough cleaning and disinfection, single-use disposable duodenoscopes have been developed. A thorough assessment of this technology is limited by the minimal published data that is currently available. This opinion assesses the current technical functionality of these devices, potential for further improvements, implications for healthcare economics and the future of gastrointestinal endoscopy.Currently available data suggest that majority of endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography procedures can be safely performed using single-use duodenoscopes. The ability to improve technical functionality, incorporate futuristic technology and secure financial reimbursement from insurance carriers will largely define the future prospects of this recent innovation.
Shajan Peter, Ji Young Bang, Shyam Varadarajulu