What is a Colonoscopy?

A colonoscopy is a procedure used to see inside the colon and rectum. The colonoscopy is utilized for many purposes including; detecting inflamed tissue, ulcers, and abnormal growths. The procedure is used to look for polyps and early signs of colorectal cancer, which can help your Plano,TX Gastroenterologist diagnose unexplained changes in bowel habits, abdominal pain, anal bleeding, and weight loss. The American Cancer Society recommends that colon cancer screening begin at age 50, and follow-up screenings are done in 10 year intervals. This interval period could be shortened based on your initial colonoscopy results.

How Is A Colonoscopy Performed?

During the colonoscopy, Dr. Brown will pass a thin, flexible, lighted tube called a colonoscope into the anus and slowly guide it through the rectum and colon. The colonoscope contains a camera on one end which transmits a video image so that the doctor can carefully examine the inside lining of the large intestine. This procedure takes about 30 minutes during which the patient is sedated.

colon diagram highlighting colon polyps in plano txWhy would get Colonoscopy?

The most common reasons for colonoscopy are:

  1. As a screening exam for colon cancer in persons age 50+
  2. As a screening exam for anyone with a family history of colon cancer or polyps
  3. A change in bowel habits (diarrhea, constipation or change in stool caliber)
  4. Chronic abdominal pain
  5. Rectal bleeding
  6. Anemia (low blood count)
  7. As a follow-up exam in people with colon polyps or colon cancer

How Is A Colonoscopy Performed?

During the colonoscopy, Dr. Brown will pass a thin, flexible, lighted tube called a colonoscope into the anus and slowly guide it through the rectum and colon. The colonoscope contains a camera on one end which transmits a video image so that the doctor can carefully examine the inside lining of the large intestine. This procedure takes about 30 minutes during which the patient is sedated.

What do I need to do to prepare for a colonoscopy?

In preparation for a colonoscopy, the colon must be completely empty so the colon lining is completely visible. To clean the colon, your gastroenterologist will instruct you on taking a laxative prepreparation in order to completely vacate your bowels the night before your test. In addition, you will be instructed to be on a liquid diet 24 hours prior to the procedure. It is important to read all instructions provided to you thoroughly in order to obtain the best results. If you have questions please call our office at (972) 867-0019.

Will I be able to drive home?

You must have a designated driver to take you home after the colonoscopy, because you will not be permitted to drive yourself home after the procedure. Prior to the procedure, you will be given a sedative which will put you asleep and keep you comfortable throughout the procedure process. Although you will wake up quickly, sedative medicines can cause temporary changes in reflexes and judgment making it unsafe to drive.

Can I take my medicines?

Most prescription and nonprescription medicines are allowed up to the day of the colonoscopy. Our office will review your medication list and tell you what medicines you may and may not continue to take.

What are the possible complications?

Colonscopy is a safe procedure and complications are very rare, but can occur. Our office and the colonoscopy clinic will review these on the day of the procedure.

Most people will have a colonoscopy at some point in their life. Everyone age fifty or older is encouraged to undergo a colon screening examination, and there are many other reasons a person may receive a colonoscopy.

Colonoscopy is a very safe and easy procedure for the patient which provides valuable information other tests are not able to give.

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