Colonoscopy is the procedure of examining the lining of the internal walls of the large intestine or colon and the rectum. The colon doctor inserts a flexible with a light source and a camera through the anus and to the colon to perform this procedure. This is recommended, when someone has persistent problems in the bowel, to check for colorectal disorders.
This is a simple procedure and takes about 15 minutes usually. The patient is required to fast for about 6 to 8 hours and also administered medication on the previous day for cleaning up the bowel thoroughly. It is done under mild sedation. So, the patient cannot feel anything. In most cases, polyps are also removed during the procedure. Samples for biopsies are also collected if required.
Although a simple procedure, colonoscopy is more effective than an x-ray of the colon when it comes to the detection of polyps. As both the detection and removal of polyps can be done simultaneously it is a better option than the Barium enema. This is also a very safe procedure with only less than 0.5% risks of colon wall perforation.
Colonoscopy – what it is
The term colonoscopy means a visual examination of the large intestine including its meeting point with the small intestine, and the rectum through an endoscopic procedure. The procedure is performed by a colon doctor or Gastroenterologist by inserting a flexible tube, with a fiber-optic camera, through the anus.
Other than the detection of abnormalities like polyps and ulcers, it also helps the removal of polyps and suspected lesions for biopsy. Persistent gastrointestinal hemorrhage, changes in bowel habit calls for this procedure. This is highly effective for screening and prevention of colorectal cancer.
Colonoscopy is a very safe procedure with an overall risk of 0.35% serious complications including perforation of the intestinal wall and bleeding. Since it is done under mild sedation the patients do not feel any pain. However, some experience nausea and bloating caused due to inflation of the colon by gas.
These Questions Can Reveal All About Colon Cancer
Talking with the cancer care team, especially the colon doctor is essential, necessary and vital to make informed decisions. Only a frank discussion can help you understand the colon and its functions. Moreover, they build up the foundation to learn more about colon cancer and the quality of life you can expect.
- What is colon cancer and how it starts?
- Who gets this and what are the rates?
- What are the risk factors?
- What signifies a colon cancer?
- How colon cancer is diagnosed?
- What is colonoscopy all about?
- Why it is important?
- How colonoscopy is performed?
- How to prepare for a colonoscopy?
- What to expect during colonoscopy?
- What are polyps?