During a colonoscopy, the doctor inserts a colonoscope into your rectum to check for abnormalities in your stallion colon .
A colonoscopy ( koe-lun-OS-kuh-pee ) is an examination used to detect changes or abnormalities in the bombastic intestine ( colon ) and rectum .
During a colonoscopy, a retentive, flexible tube ( colonoscope ) is inserted into the rectum. A bantam video camera at the tip off of the tube allows the doctor of the church to view the inside of the integral colon.
If necessary, polyps or other types of abnormal tissue can be removed through the telescope during a colonoscopy. weave samples ( biopsies ) can be taken during a colonoscopy a well .
Why it’s done
Your doctor may recommend a colonoscopy to :
- Investigate intestinal signs and symptoms. A colonoscopy can help your doctor explore possible causes of abdominal pain, rectal bleeding, chronic constipation, chronic diarrhea and other intestinal problems.
- Screen for colon cancer. If you’re age 50 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 or sometimes sooner to screen for colon cancer. Colonoscopy is one option for colon cancer screening. Talk with your doctor about your options.
- 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.
A colonoscopy poses few risks. rarely, complications of a colonoscopy may include :
- Adverse reaction to the sedative used during the exam
- Bleeding from the site where a tissue sample (biopsy) was taken or a polyp or other abnormal tissue was removed
- A tear in the colon or rectum wall (perforation)
After discussing the risks of colonoscopy with you, your doctor will ask you to sign a consent class authorizing the routine .
How you prepare
Before a colonoscopy, you ‘ll need to clean out ( empty ) your colon. Any remainder in your colon may obscure the view of your colon and rectum during the examination .
To empty your colon, your doctor may ask you to :
- Follow a special diet the day before the exam. Typically, you won’t be able to eat solid food the day before the exam. Drinks may be limited to clear liquids — plain water, tea and coffee without milk or cream, broth, and carbonated beverages. Avoid red liquids, which can be confused with blood during the colonoscopy. You may not be able to eat or drink anything after midnight the night before the exam.
- Take a laxative. Your doctor will usually recommend taking a laxative, in either pill form or liquid form. You may be instructed to take the laxative the night before your colonoscopy, or you may be asked to use the laxative both the night before and the morning of the procedure.
- Use an enema kit. In some cases, you may need to use an over-the-counter enema kit — either the night before the exam or a few hours before the exam — to empty your colon. This is generally only effective in emptying the lower colon and is usually not recommended as a primary way of emptying your colon.
Adjust your medications. Remind your doctor of your medications at least a week before the examination — particularly if you have diabetes, gamey lineage blackmail or heart problems or if you take medications or supplements that contain iron .
besides tell your doctor if you take aspirin or other medications that thin the blood, such as warfarin ( Coumadin, Jantoven ) ; newer anticoagulants, such as dabigatran ( Pradaxa ) or rivaroxaban ( Xarelto ), used to reduce hazard of blot clots or stroke ; or heart medications that affect platelets, such as clopidogrel ( Plavix ) .
You may need to adjust your dosages or stop taking the medications temporarily .
What you can expect
During the procedure
During a colonoscopy, you ‘ll wear a gown, but probably nothing else. sedation is normally recommended. sometimes a mild sedative is given in pill form. In early cases, the sedative is combined with an intravenous pain medication to minimize any discomfort .
You ‘ll begin the examination lying on your side on the examination postpone, normally with your knees drawn toward your breast. The doctor will insert a colonoscope into your rectum .
The setting — which is long adequate to reach the entire length of your colon — contains a light and a tube ( channel ) that allows the sophisticate to pump air out or carbon dioxide into your colon. The air out or carbon dioxide inflates the colon, which provides a better horizon of the lining of the colon .
When the scope is moved or tune is introduced, you may feel abdominal cramp or the urge to have a intestine motion .
The colonoscope besides contains a bantam television television camera at its tip. The television camera sends images to an external proctor so that the sophisticate can study the inwardly of your colon .
The doctor can besides insert instruments through the impart to take weave samples ( biopsies ) or remove polyps or other areas of abnormal tissue.
Read more: Lower Gastrointestinal (GI) Tract Disorders
A colonoscopy typically takes about 30 to 60 minutes .
After the procedure
After the examination, it takes about an hour to begin to recover from the ataractic. You ‘ll need person to take you home because it can take up to a day for the full effects of the ataractic to wear off. Do n’t drive or make significant decisions or go back to exploit for the stay of the day .
If your repair removed a polyp during your colonoscopy, you may be advised to eat a extra diet temporarily .
You may feel bloated or bye accelerator for a few hours after the examination, as you clear the air from your colon. walk may help relieve any discomfort .
You may besides notice a humble sum of lineage with your first base intestine motion after the examination. normally this is n’t cause for alarm. Consult your repair if you continue to pass rake or lineage clots or if you have dogged abdominal trouble or a fever. While improbable, this may occur immediately or in the first few days after the operation, but may be delayed for up to one to two weeks .
A colonoscopic examination involves lightly inserting a fiber-optic colonoscope into your rectum and bombastic intestine to view your lower gastrointestinal tract .
Your doctor will review the results of the colonoscopy and then share the results with you .
A colonoscopy is considered negative if the doctor does n’t find any abnormalities in the colon .
Your doctor may recommend that you have another colonoscopy :
- In 10 years, if you’re at average risk of colon cancer — you have no colon cancer risk factors other than age
- In five years, if you have a history of polyps in previous colonoscopy procedures
- In one year, if there was residual stool in the colon that prevented complete examination of your colon
A colonoscopy is considered incontrovertible if the doctor finds any polyps or abnormal tissue in the colon .
Most polyps are n’t cancerous, but some can be precancerous. Polyps removed during colonoscopy are sent to a lab for analysis to determine whether they are cancerous, precancerous or noncancerous .
Depending on the size and number of polyps, you may need to follow a more rigorous surveillance schedule in the future to look for more polyps .
If your doctor finds one or two polyps less than 0.4 edge ( 1 centimeter ) in diameter, he or she may recommend a reprise colonoscopy in five to 10 years, depending on your other risk factors for colon cancer .
Your doctor will recommend another colonoscopy preferably if you have :
- More than two polyps
- A large polyp — larger than 0.4 inch (1 centimeter)
- Polyps and also residual stool in the colon that prevents complete examination of the colon
- Polyps with certain cell characteristics that indicate a higher risk of future cancer
- Cancerous polyps
If you have a polyp or other abnormal tissue that could n’t be removed during the colonoscopy, your sophisticate may recommend a repeat examination with a gastroenterologist who has special expertness in removing large polyps, or operation.
Read more: Lower Gastrointestinal (GI) Tract Disorders
Problems with your exam
If your doctor of the church is concerned about the quality of the view through the oscilloscope, he or she may recommend a reprise colonoscopy or a shorter time until your next colonoscopy. If your doctor was n’t able to advance the telescope through your entire colon, a barium enema or virtual colonoscopy may be recommended to examine the respite of your colon .
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