DAVID M. MARTIN, MD / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DAVID M. MARTIN, MD / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Bile release in the duodenum, pill camera view. The jet of bile and pancreatic juice (brown) has been released from the ampulla of Vater, also called the hepatopancreatic ampulla, which is out of frame at bottom. The ampulla is a small protuberance where the bile duct and pancreatic duct open into the duodenum, the upper part of the small intestine. Bile and pancreatic juice are required for proper digestion of food. Bile helps to emulsify fats, aiding their digestion, and pancreatic juice contains a variety of enzymes that break down proteins and carbohydrates. A pill camera is a tiny camera the size of a standard drug pill, which is swallowed and then returns images of the interior of the digestive tract. It is useful for study of the small intestine.
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