A colonoscopy is a procedure that enables us to see the inner lining of the rectum and colon, using a long, flexible tube with a camera inserted into the anus through the colon. The procedure requires a sedate patient so we have anesthesiologists on staff to minimize discomfort. Although no one looks forward to getting a colonoscopy, it is the most effective means of early detection of colon cancer and other digestive disorders. We perform thousands so we know exactly how to provide the finest experience from prepping through the procedure, and we know how to deliver the best possible results for continued wellness.
It is suggested that everyone undergo a routine colonoscopy at 45, then every ten years thereafter to catch polyps before they turn cancerous. The procedure will be done more frequently if polyps are found. Reasons to consider a colonoscopy are:
- Routine check for colon tumors
- Routine check for polyps
- Investigate abdominal pain
- Investigate blood in the stool
- Investigate frequent diarrhea
- Routine check for those with a family history of colon polyps or colon cancer
The colon must be completely cleaned prior to the procedure. Preparation involves:
Halt intake of solid foods and drink only clear fluids 1 to 2 days in advance. Some approved foods and liquids include water, sports drinks with electrolytes, plain tea or coffee, clear broths, and gelatin.
The night before the colonoscopy, take a prescription laxative tablet or solution. The laxative will be mixed with one gallon of water. Instructions will be given on how much to drink the night before and in the morning.
To completely clear the colon, an enema may be necessary prior to the procedure.
To avoid dehydration, plenty of fluids should be consumed during preparation. However, drinking should stop 6 to 8 hours before the procedure.
The patient must be driven to the hospital since operation of machinery will be restricted for up to 12 hours after the procedure. After the colonoscopy, normal foods and lots of fluids should be consumed.