Colonoscopy

A safe, outpatient procedure that examines the colon, or large intestine.

No Referral Required

What is a colonoscopy?

A colonoscopy is a an exam used to look for changes – such as swollen, irritated tissues, polyps or cancer – in the large intestine (colon) and rectum. Colonoscopy remains a top-tier test for colon cancer screening and is considered the “gold standard” by many.

The procedure itself takes approximately 15-30 minutes. The colon is approximately five to six feet in length and has numerous functions. This procedure aids doctors in diagnosing cancer, polyps, colitis and other serious disorders. One of the primary benefits of colonoscopy is the ability to not only detect pre-cancerous colon polyps but also to prevent colon cancer by removing these polyps during the exam. The timing of your next colonoscopy is then determined by the size, number, and type of polyp removed, if any. Tissue samples (biopsies) can be taken during a colonoscopy as well.

Why It's Done

  • Investigate intestinal signs and symptoms. A colonoscopy can help your doctor explore possible causes of abdominal pain, rectal bleeding, chronic diarrhea and other intestinal problems.
  • Screen for colon cancer. If you’re age 45 or older and at average risk of colon cancer — you have no colon cancer risk factors other than age — your doctor may recommend a colonoscopy every 10 years. If you have other risk factors, your doctor may recommend a screen sooner. Colonoscopy is one of a few options for colon cancer screening. Talk with your doctor about the best options for you.
  • Look for more polyps. If you have had polyps before, your doctor may recommend a follow-up colonoscopy to look for and remove any additional polyps. This is done to reduce your risk of colon cancer.
  • Treat an issue. Sometimes, a colonoscopy may be done for treatment purposes, such as placing a stent or removing an object in your colon.

**the above information comes from the following website: https://www.mayoclinic.org/tests-procedures/colonoscopy/about/pac-20393569

A colonoscopy can be beneficial in diagnosing unexplained symptoms, including:

Change in Bowel Habits (Diarrhea, Constipation)
Rectal Bleeding with Bright Red or Dark Black Blood
Cramping or
Abdominal Pain
Weakness
& Fatigue
Unintended
Weight Loss
Before the Procedure

You will receive instructions on how to clean and empty the colon. This generally consists of a special solution, laxatives or enemas followed by a clear liquid diet until the colonoscopy is performed. Your colonoscopy prep is very important. Without a good prep (with your bowel empty and clean), your gastroenterologist will not be able to see your colon clearly. Click here for prep information.

During the Procedure

You will receive a mild sedative to reduce discomfort. A colonoscope is gently passed through the anus and into the colon, allowing the doctor to view images on a monitor. Other procedures, such as a biopsy and removing polyps, can be performed during a colonoscopy, if necessary. Providers can potentially find precancerous polyps that can be removed before they turn into cancer.

After the Procedure

You may experience slight cramping in your abdomen. This will generally subside within an hour. Your colonoscopy results are immediate; however, allow up to two weeks for biopsy and pathology results.

1

Purchase the following items from any pharmacy or grocery store if you’re completing our Miralax prep:

MiraLAX
Dulcolax
Gatorade

2

Three (3) days before your procedure, please review all your prep instructions and AVOID all seeds, nuts, corn & popcorn.

3

On the day before the procedure, be sure to have a clear liquid diet. Do not eat solid food.

Clear Liquid Diet Choices:

Soups

Bullion only (NO broths)

Desserts

Jell-O, Popsicles (NO red or blue)

Beverages

Coffee (Black or with sugar only. NO dairy or artificial creamers), tea, apple juice, white grape juice, Gatorade (NO red or blue)

Carbonation

Coke, Pepsi, 7-Up, Sprite, Ginger Ale

4

On the day of your procedure:

Driving

An adult driver (age 18 or older) must accompany you. Your driver must remain in the facility or your procedure may be rescheduled.

Jewelry

Please leave all jewelry at home.

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