A Multi-Specialty Ambulatory Surgery Center
Get Screened for Colorectal Cancer!
“It’s too personal to talk about.”
“I’ve heard the screening tests are very uncomfortable.”
“I’m not old enough to be screened.”
“I don’t have any symptoms.”
These are some of the excuses people give to avoid getting screened for colon cancer. But, if you’re 50 years or older, have a family history, or experience symptoms at any age, you should be screened.
Colon cancer is one cancer that’s 90% preventable with early and regular screening. Screening tests for colorectal cancer can save 30,000 lives each year. The most common screening test is a colonoscopy. At The Center for Surgery, we have three GI suites dedicated to the procedure for your convenience.
What’s Involved in a Colonoscopy?
Before the colonoscopy begins, an IV needle will be put in your hand or arm for medicines to make you feel relaxed and sleepy. Most patients will have no pain during the procedure and will probably not remember the colonoscopy itself. If there is pain, additional medicine can be added to the IV. Patients with special needs may have an anesthesiologist present to administer deeper sedation. However, most colonoscopies are completed with moderate sedation administered by the endoscopist.
After your colonoscopy, you’ll need to rest for an hour or two in the recovery area until the sedatives have worn off. During this time, you will probably have to pass gas from air that was inserted during the procedure so the lining of the colon could be seen clearly. You will need someone to drive you home, but you’ll be able to return to your regular activities the next day.
Because the lining of the colon must be completely clean to provide the best view, bowel preparation the day before the colonoscopy is important. A clear liquid diet and strong laxatives will be prescribed for you. The laxatives will produce a great deal of watery diarrhea.
Depending on what is found during your colonoscopy, your doctor will recommend the right time for a follow-up colonoscopy. If cancer is discovered, you’ll be referred to a surgeon or medical oncologist for treatment.
Although it is rare, call your doctor immediately if you have severe abdominal pain, fever, bloody bowel movements, or dizziness or weakness after your colonoscopy.
Colonoscopy is not without risk. In a very, very small percentage of colonoscopies, the scope may make a hole (perforation) in the colon. There are also risks from sedation and from the preparation to consider.
Don’t Put Off Your Health
Click here to find one of The Center for Surgery’s staff physicians today and make a plan for your colon health.