Resume Motility Procedures Safely

Task Force Recommends Proper PPE To Resume Motility Procedures

Earlier this year, the American Neurogastroenterology and Motility Society (ANMS) created a task force to develop a reactivation plan to resume gastrointestinal motility procedures, including motility studies, reflux monitoring studies, and breath testing during COVID-19.

After careful review, the Task Force published their recommendations in the American Journal of Gastroenterology.

During an interview with Healio Gastroenterology, Jason R. Baker, Ph.D. said:

“The COVID-19 GI Physiology/Motility Laboratory recommendations provide guidelines for protecting staff and patients from COVID-19 simultaneously triaging diagnostic testing for patients within each GI Physiology/Motility Laboratory domain.”

The task force recommends performing motility procedures in motility laboratories that adhere to recommendations and use personal protective equipment (PPE) guidelines to protect the patients, ancillary staff, and motility health care professionals.

The ANMS task force recommendations are not evidence-based, but rather based on societal guidelines for endoscopic procedures.

Baker and his colleagues said patients scheduled for motility procedures should complete a COVID-19 test 48 hours prior and report the results before their procedures.

Additionally, the task force strongly recommends using full PPE coupled with physical distancing and infection control measures when a patient who has not completed a COVID-19 test requires a procedure.

The task force’s PPE recommendations for motility laboratory procedures include:

  • The use of N95 masks, double gloves, face shield or protective eyewear, and gowns during esophageal physiological procedures, antroduodenal manometry, or colon manometry.
  • Required use of N95 masks or surgical masks with a face shield or protective eye equipment and gown for wireless motility capsule.
  • Recommended use of N95 masks, gloves, face shield or protective eye equipment and gown for a gastric emptying breath test.
  • Using N95 masks or surgical mask with face shield or protective eye equipment, double gloves and gown for anorectal function test.
  • The use of N95 masks, gloves, face shields, or protective eye equipment and gown for hydrogen breath testing.


According to Baker,

“The recommendations provide a guideline for GI Physiology/Motility Laboratory leadership to navigate, safety and scheduling, during a dynamic and fluid situation adjusted by local leadership regulations to maintain GI Physiology/Motility Laboratory operation.”


Furthermore, Baker asserted,

“These diagnostic test results provide insight for providers to determine adequate interventions to potentially improve symptomology and enhance the quality of life.”


Altus Biologics applauds the proactive stance of the American Neurogastroenterology and Motility Society (ANMS) and its task force recommendations for reactivating motility procedures in a way that protects physicians, patients, and other ancillary personnel from possible COVID-19 infections.


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