Colonoscopy - a procedure by which a doctor can "look inside" your intestines.It lets do a small camera, called an endoscope to study the colon, which is on the end of a long, thin, flexible tube.Enter it into the body through the anus.


  • 1 About procedure
  • 2 alternative procedures
  • 3 Preparing for
  • 4 Procedure What to expect on the appointed day?
  • 5 What to expect after the procedure?Restoring
  • 6 about the risks, side effects and complications
  • 7 about the results of the survey

About procedure

this method of diagnosis will help determine the cause of symptoms such as:

  • frequent diarrhea, or problems withrhythm of defecation;
  • bleeding from the rectum or blood in the stool;
  • mucus from the intestine;
  • fatigue, weakness, or shortness of breath.

All of these symptoms may be the result of the following problems:

  1. inflammation caused by diseases such as ulcerative colitis or Crohn's disease;
  2. polyps (growths, sometimes called an adenoma);
  3. colorectal cancer.
Colonoscopy is performed on an outpatient basis

Colonoscopy is performed on an outpatient basis

Sometimes the procedure is carried out to confirm the results of other studies, for example, barium enema.You may also be asked to pass this examination, if the result of the test for occult blood in the stool revealed any deviation from the norm.

If you walk into a group with an increased risk of colorectal cancer or polyps from forming, you need to examine the intestine for the presence of these diseases even if you have no symptoms.

During the procedure, the fence biomaterial (tissue sample) may be held for further study in the laboratory.You can also remove polyps which arise on the intestinal walls.Most often, they are benign (non-cancerous cells), but after many years, can turn into cancerous growths.

Despite the fact that colonoscopy - this is the best method for diagnosis of colorectal cancer, there is a small chance that a doctor will not be able to see it during the procedure.This happens approximately one person out of twenty (5%) for various reasons: the intestine was not sufficiently clear or the colonoscope could not go through the whole length of the intestine.Very rarely it is the fault of the doctor.That is why it is important to time to see a specialist, and do not be afraid of the procedure.


procedures Despite the fact that this procedure is considered the best method of bowel examination, it may be acceptable not for everyone.If you can not or do not want to undergo the procedure, the doctor will suggest you other options.Below are the main alternatives:

  • Irrigoscopy.A liquid containing barium (a substance which manifests itself in the X-rays), to be introduced into the intestine through the anus.Thus, abdominal X-ray images will be visible from inside the intestines.
  • Virtual colonoscopy.This survey is carried out by means of computed tomography, uses X-rays to produce three-dimensional images of the colon and rectum.To expand the lumen, is injected into the intestine air.
  • Sigmoidoscopy.This procedure is similar to colonoscopy, but its use of a smaller device, allowing to examine the rectum and lower part of the colon.

also recommended to postpone the completion of a procedure at the time of carrying a child, unless you have a specific reason to decide on it: diagnosis during pregnancy may be carried out only under the threat of life-threatening diseases, the only alternative treatment which is colorectal surgeryor in cases of suspected colorectal cancer.
In most cases, the procedure is painless, so the reasons for the fear or failure of the procedure virtually none.

Preparation for the procedure

Colonoscopy requires proper preparation

Colonoscopy requires proper preparation

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Diagnostics performed in the outpatient department of a hospital, lasts no more than an hour and is usuallyone-day intervention.This means that you pass the examination and go home the same day.

doctor to consult necessarily tell you how to prepare for the procedure.It is important that the intestines were completely empty at the time of diagnosis, the doctor was able to see everything clearly.

To do this at the hospital you will be given a strong laxative.Usually it is necessary to take two days before the test, but this question should be clarified immediately by a doctor or nurse.

Since laxatives cause diarrhea, you need the whole day to be near the restroom and drink plenty of clean fluid to avoid dehydration.Such liquid forms include water, lemonade, tea and coffee (without milk).Perhaps you will experience minor pain, but often this does not happen.Also, you may be asked:

  • stop taking medicines containing iron, as they may cause constipation, and when examining the intestine will look dark, making it difficult to conduct the procedure;
  • change your diet for two days before the test - this condition depends on how much fiber you eat.

If you are taking medicines, for example, high blood pressure, you can take them, unless the doctor does not forbid you.You may be asked to stop taking medications that can cause constipation.If you are taking blood-thinning drugs such as Warfarin, Aspirin or Clopidogrel, and so on, be sure to tell the doctor for consultation, to have given you instructions for the reception of these tablets to prepare for the procedure.

In that case, if you suffer from diabetes, and make insulin injection or taking medication for the treatment, contact your doctor and tell him about this, so they can put you in the front of the queue for the procedure.You will be told in detail, when the injections and how long to take medicine, but also about what you can eat before the test.

During the consultation the doctor will answer all questions you may have, will discuss with you then, how the diagnosis as it prepare, what to expect after her talk and all the painful sensations that you can experience all the risks, alternatives,as well as the pros and cons of the procedure.

What to expect on the appointed day?

  • procedure takes only 30-45 minutes.You will be asked to wear a hospital gown that opens in the back, or special pants with a slit.
  • Also, you will be asked to wear an oxygen mask or hold a small tube through which will flow oxygen to your nose.You can make the intravenous drip of all necessary medications.Most likely, you will be given a sedative and an analgesic agent that you feel comfortable during the procedure.
  • doctor will ask you to lie on your left side and enters the intestine colonoscope.For maximum ease of the procedure to be used grease based on vaseline.
  • also in the intestine is pumped air to open the gap and facilitate the movement of the camera.This can cause discomfort, unpleasant sensations, bloating and gas.Since the flexible instrument, the physician can rotate it in the intestines if necessary.
  • Images from the camera are transmitted to a monitor.During diagnosis you may be asked to change the situation, for example, to turn from side to back, so the doctor can look at the site from different angles.
  • you may also have to take a sample of tissue for laboratory analysis, which is to say, what it contains cells: malignant or benign.During the procedure, intestinal polyps are removed.It is painless and is performed using a small instrument, is transmitted through the colonoscope.
  • Sometimes you can not fully examine the intestines.This can happen if he does not fully empty, or if the camera can not overcome the bend.Therefore, you may be asked to be re-diagnose or select a different procedure.

Read: The different sections of the small intestine

What to expect after the procedure?Restoring

The doctor evaluates the results of colonoscopy

doctor evaluates the results of colonoscopy

you will be given time to lie down and rest until the effects of sedative medication wears off.Then you can go home, but you need to ask someone to drive you, because after the medication, you may experience drowsiness.Also ask friends or relatives to stay with you the first twelve hours after the procedure.

After the diagnosis, before you go home from the hospital, your doctor may discuss with you the results of the survey and tests or prescribe you another day for a consultation.If the sampling of biological material or removal of polyps have been made, the results will be sent to your doctor, who gave direction to the process.

If you experience pain, you can take non-prescription painkillers, such as paracetamol or ibuprofen.

As long as you move away from sedatives, your coordination and reaction speed can be broken, so you can not get behind the wheel, drink alcoholic beverages, controlled by a mechanism and sign legal documents until twenty-four hours after the end of the procedure.If you have any doubts or questions, contact your doctor and follow his instructions exactly.

Most people do not have problems after the test, but you need to contact your doctor if:

  1. you are bleeding from the anus;
  2. aggravated abdominal pain or prolonged swelling;
  3. you constantly breath, and if you have any pain in the shoulders;
  4. you feel unwell and have a fever.

about the risks, side effects and complications

As with any other medical procedure, colonoscopy is associated with some risk.
For example, the intestines may be poorly cleaned, and the doctor will not be able to finish the inspection.In this case, you will be offered a re-examination in a different time or choose another method of diagnosis.
can also happen intestinal rupture.It can cause slight damage to walls or air insufflation.

If the gap is small, and find quickly, the treatment will be based on the handling of these days, and antibiotics, and if the gap is large, may require surgery.
Furthermore, bleeding may occur.This problem occurs in one of thousands of people passing procedure.If you removed polyps, there is 30-50% probability that the second through the seventh day of bleeding may occur after the test.Most often, it takes place without your help.

Colonoscopy as intestinal research method

Colonoscopy as a method of research intestine

It also happens postpolipektomii syndrome.This is a syndrome in which twelve hours after the procedure, or later, the patient experiences pain in the stomach, fever and an increase in the number of white blood cells.The risk of such problems is extremely small.

In order to make the patient feel comfortable during the procedure, it is administered sedative drugs, causing a so-called twilight state.

Therefore, there is a small risk of symptoms of respiratory problems and heart problems, as well as the body's reaction to the injection, nausea, vomiting, and low blood pressure.Very rarely, the infection is entered during the procedure.This happens when the endoscope is not cleaned up after the last patient or poorly sterilized.

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During and after the procedure you will be under the supervision of medical staff, so you will help immediately, if something goes wrong.

about the results of the survey

doctor will tell you that the fence biomaterial for analysis and that if there were polyps removed has been conducted.If the sample was taken, most likely, you will have to wait for the results within three weeks.The results may be the following:

  • all within the normal range (negative result);
  • benign polyps;
  • other reasons, such as inflammatory bowel disease;
  • cancer.

results within the normal range (negative) means that you have not found in the intestine or cancer cells, or polyps.Approximately half of the people receiving this survey, get an answer.
however, it is a small chance that cancer cells are still present, so a normal result does not guarantee that you do not have cancer or that it does not manifest itself in a few years.

If you are at risk because of their age and got a result of the analysis, offers tested for colorectal cancer every two years.

In the case where at the time of the survey are found benign polyps, which are immediately deleted.This procedure is known as a polypectomy, and it helps prevent the development of cancer.Approximately four out of ten people (40%) with deviations from the norm according to the analysis of occult blood in the stool are found polyps.In some cases, polyps can reappear after surgery.

Colonoscopy is performed using a special apparatus

Colonoscopy is performed using a special apparatus

After the sample will be studied in the laboratory, you doctor will let you know how often, according to a study, you need to undergo re-examination.

If the diagnostic results show that you have inflammatory bowel disease such as Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis, you will be advised to consult a gastroenterologist - a specialist in this type of ailments.Only a few (approximately one person out of ten (10%)) from undergoing this procedure after the analysis of occult blood in the stool are diagnosed with colorectal cancer.

If you put such a diagnosis, then you will be given a referral to a specialist in this area for the purpose of treatment.If cancer is found at an early stage, the chance of cure it is very large.Approximately nine out of ten (90%) of people diagnosed with the early stages of cancer can be treated successfully.

Unfortunately, not always colorectal cancer diagnosed by this method, can be cured.

itself procedure scary and often painless.Calibration is done in a calm atmosphere where behind your pulse, respiration, and the pressure will be constantly monitored.After the examination, you will have time to rest and recover from the sedatives.Also, if polyps are removed, you may be asked to be screened more frequently for prevention and control.

If you do not want to go through the procedure, and this is not acceptable diagnostic method for you, talk to your doctor about alternative methods of examination.In that case, if you are not sure of the results of the survey, and if you still have any symptoms, or you are experiencing prolonged pain and bleeding, please contact your doctor to reduce the risk and probability of complications.

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