A colonoscopy is an out-patient procedure, performed under anesthesia, that enables Dr. Anoushfar to evaluate the inside of the colon.
During a colonoscopy, our experienced physician uses a colonoscope (a long, flexible instrument about ½ inch in diameter) to view the lining of the colon. The colonoscope is inserted into the rectum and advanced through the large intestine. If necessary during a colonoscopy, small amounts of tissue may be removed for analysis (a biopsy) and polyps can be identified and removed. In many cases, a colonoscopy allows accurate diagnosis and treatment of colorectal problems without the need for a major operation.
A colonoscopy may be done for a variety of reasons. Most often it is done as a screening test for adults over the age of 50 to investigate the cause of blood in the stool, abdominal pain, diarrhea, a change in bowel habit or an abnormality found on x-rays. Individuals with previous history of polyps or colon cancers may be advised to have periodic colonoscopies because their risks are greater for polyps or colon cancer.
The American Cancer Society “Guidelines for the Early Detection of Cancer” recommends, beginning at the age of 50, for both men and women with average risk for developing colorectal cancer should be screened.
What happens before a colonoscopy?
To complete a successful colonoscopy, the bowel must be clean so that the physician can clearly view the colon. It is very important that you follow the doctor’s instructions given to you for your bowel preparation well in advance of the procedure. Without proper preparation, the colonoscopy will not be successful and the test may have to be repeated.