If you are experiencing frequent diarrhea, it may be time to schedule a colonoscopy screening with a gastroenterologist. A gastroenterologist is a medical professional who specializes in diagnosing and treating conditions that affect the digestive system, including the colon. At Cypress diarrhea, our team of gastroenterologists is committed to providing patients with high-quality care, including colonoscopy screenings.
What is a colonoscopy screening?
A colonoscopy screening is a procedure that allows a gastroenterologist to examine the inside of your colon for any abnormalities, such as polyps or tumors. During the procedure, a long, flexible tube with a camera attached to the end (called a colonoscope) is inserted through the rectum and into the colon. The camera sends images to a monitor, allowing the gastroenterologist to examine the entire length of the colon.
What are the benefits of a colonoscopy screening?
Colonoscopy screenings are an important tool for detecting and preventing colon cancer. According to the American Cancer Society, colon cancer is the third most common cancer diagnosed in both men and women in the United States, and the second leading cause of cancer death. However, if caught early, colon cancer is highly treatable. A colonoscopy screening can detect colon cancer in its early stages, when it is most treatable. In addition, a colonoscopy can also detect other conditions that may be affecting your digestive system, such as inflammatory bowel disease.
What happens during a colonoscopy screening?
Prior to the procedure, you will be given instructions on how to prepare for the colonoscopy. This may include changes to your diet and medications. You will also be given anesthesia to help you relax and reduce any discomfort during the procedure. Once you are sedated, the gastroenterologist will insert the colonoscope into your rectum and begin examining your colon. The procedure typically takes between 30 minutes to an hour to complete. After the procedure, you will be monitored until the effects of the anesthesia wear off.
Are there any risks associated with a colonoscopy screening?
As with any medical procedure, there are some risks associated with a colonoscopy screening. These may include bleeding, infection, or damage to the colon. However, the risk of complications is generally low, and the benefits of the procedure often outweigh the risks.
When should I schedule a colonoscopy screening?
The American Cancer Society recommends that individuals at average risk of colon cancer begin regular colonoscopy screenings at age 45. However, if you have a family history of colon cancer or other risk factors, your gastroenterologist may recommend that you begin screenings earlier or more frequently. It is important to discuss your individual risk factors with your gastroenterologist to determine the best screening schedule for you.
Colonoscopy screenings are an essential tool for detecting and preventing colon cancer. If you are experiencing symptoms such as frequent diarrhea, or if you are at increased risk of colon cancer, it may be time to schedule a colonoscopy screening with a gastroenterologist. At Cypress diarrhea, our team of experienced gastroenterologists is dedicated to providing patients with high-quality care and personalized treatment plans.