Bilitec is currently the only commercially available device that allows to measure biliary reflux. By using bilirubin as a marker for bile, Bilitec records the frequency and duration of exposure to bile, either stomach or esophagus, for a period of 24 hours.
The system also allows the patient's PH values to be acquired over 24 hours, providing a more complete profile of a patient's reflux disease.
Bilitec uses a fibre optic probe to measure the amount of bilirubin
The method of detection bile-containing reflux in the gastro-esophageal apparatus is based on the detection of the presence of bilirubin, the main biliary pigment. Notwithstanding the complexity of the optical behaviour of the bile and of bilirubin, it is possible to assert that bilirubin is a good marker for the detection of bile. The measurement is performed by means of the insertion of an optical fibre bundle into the stomach (or esophagus). The bundle is connected with an optoelectronic unit capable of sending an optical radiation at two different wavelengths to an optical probe positioned at the end of the fibre bundle; the optical fibre probe is actually a miniaturized spectrophotometric cell.
One wavelength is the characteristic absorption wavelength of bilirubin (470 nm) and the other one is utilised as reference. Bilirubin is only used as a marker, in order to measure the exposure time of the stomach/oesophagus mucosa to the materials contained in the biliary reflux. This should be considered the clinically-relevant parameter measured with the sensor.
Bile-containing reflux can take place from the duodenum into the stomach and from the stomach into the esophagus. They are considered contributing factors to the development of several pathological conditions such as gastric ulcer, “chemical” gastritis, upper dyspeptic syndromes, and severe esophagitis. Under certain conditions, the enterogastric reflux may also increase the risk of gastric cancer.
In connection with the Vimedat ™ software (Visible Medical Data), it creates an integrated system that is easy to use for reflux diagnosis. The system allows to take advantage of several specific analyses and is equipped with an intuitive graphical user interface. The reports are fully configurable and compatible with LibreOffice, Microsoft Word and OpenOffice.