A colonoscopy is a medical procedure utilized to allow a physician to view and directly image the inside of a patient's large intestine. A colonoscopy is very helpful in the diagnosis of numerous disorders of the gastrointestinal system and providing treatment for certain gastrointestinal problems. Colonoscopies are used frequently to screen patients for colon cancer once they meet certain high-risk criteria. The dual use of a colonoscopy is what makes it a viable and economical option and technique for the screening, examination, and treatment of intestinal abnormalities and growths. A colonoscopy is performed with specialized instruments and a colonoscope. A colonoscope is an easily maneuverable and flexible instrument with a camera on the end of it. All individuals who undergo a colonoscopy are sedated with some form of anesthesia to ensure they feel no pain or discomfort.
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What It's Used For
A colonoscopy is a procedure used for the examination of an individual's large intestine and rectum. This type of screening can be done to check for colon cancer and other problems in a patient's intestinal tract. These problems may include colon polyps and other growths, diverticulosis, bleeding in the intestines, inflammatory bowel disease, the underlying cause of bowel habit changes, pain in the abdominal and pelvic regions, intestinal obstruction, abnormal CT scans, abnormal MRIs, and abnormal x-rays. A colonoscopy is also used to find the underlying cause of chronic constipation, chronic diarrhea, and unexplained weight loss. Every individual who is past their fifth decade of life who has an average risk of developing colon cancer should have a routine colonoscopy at least once per decade. Individuals considered to be at an increased risk of developing colon cancer should have a routine colonoscopy on a more frequent basis. Upon following the proper colonoscopy screening guidelines, between seventy-six and ninety percent of all cases of colon cancer can be prevented or found at the precancerous stage.
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