A colonoscopy is a test that is used to screen for common digestive disorders and diseases in the colon. It allows doctors to provide necessary early treatments before a colon-related condition becomes life-threatening. Know when and why a colonoscopy is recommended so that you can plan ahead and schedule your exam with a gastroenterologist at Digestive and Liver Center of Florida in Orlando, FL, and Altamonte Springs, FL.
What Is a Colonoscopy?
A colonoscopy is the most reliable and accurate way for your doctor to view the inner lining of your colon. Your gastroenterologist uses a special tool called an endoscope to look at the inside of the large intestine. The endoscope is a long, flexible tool that will allow your doctor to see the expanse of the anus, rectum, and colon on a screen. It can spot polyps that could be precancerous, ulcers, and inflammation. Your doctor can remove any polyps or abnormal growths through the endoscope during the procedure.
Why Is This Test Recommended?
Colorectal cancer has a relatively high fatality rate when it isn't treated early, which is why it is so important for people of a certain age and medical history to have their colon checked with this test. These are some of the reasons why your Orlando, FL gastroenterologist may recommend a colonoscopy:
- There is severe stomach pain or blood in the stool.
- Bowel problems, including diarrhea and constipation.
- Patients who have reached age 50, especially men, are often strongly advised to have their first colonoscopy.
- If there is a family history of colon cancer or digestive disorders, your doctor may suggest a screening.
What to Expect
For the colonoscopy test to be successful, you must closely follow the instructions provided by your gastroenterologist. Before the appointment, you must agree to a liquid diet for a few days and take laxatives to clear the colon so that the endoscope will have clear passage. You will be sedated to ensure that you're relaxed during the procedure. The entire visit shouldn't take more than an hour, and you'll need to have someone help you home afterwards.
Ask Your Gastroenterologist
If you're not sure if you should have a colonoscopy, schedule time to speak with a gastroenterologist. Call (407) 384-7388 today for an appointment with a gastroenterologist at Digestive and Liver Center of Florida in Orlando, FL, and Altamonte Springs, FL.