THE DIAGNOSIS of gastric pathology remains difficult and all too frequently uncertain despite one hundred years of continuous effort to improve diagnostic techniques. Gastroscopy, introduced by Kussmaul in 1868, has been greatly improved over the years but has yet to assume a major role in gastric diagnosis. The barium meal x-ray remains the most important and reliable technique for demonstrating gastric pathology. Although the introduction of image amplification and cinefluorography have improved the reliability of roentgen examination, a significant number of lesions remain undetected. Gastrointestinal cytology has made a major contribution to diagnosis in the few centers where this technique has been developed to its full potential.
Attempts have been made to apply photographic techniques to gastric diagnosis since the late 19th century. The earliest efforts at direct intragastric photography and photography through gastroscopes were only partially successful due to problems of instrumentation and photographic emulsions. Although high quality