A Colonoscopy is a test to examine the inner lining of your large intestine (rectum and colon) with the use of a thin, flexible tube with a camera and a light source, called a Colonoscope.
Before a Colonoscopy, you will need to prepare and clean your colon (colon prep). The colon prep usually takes about 24 hours. The prep for the colonoscopy is usually more difficult than the actual test. Please make plans to stay home during your prep time. Frequent bathroom use for bowel movements will be required. The colon prep causes loose, frequent stools and diarrhea to clear out your colon for the test. The colon prep may be uncomfortable, but very critical in achieving great results. If the colon contains stool and has not been entirely cleaned out, the visualization of the colon wall will be poor and important colon lesions can be missed during the colonoscopy. In order to avoid such problem, please follow the instructions very carefully and ask questions. Here is an example of what your colon could look like during colonoscopy.
You will need to drink a special solution as part of your prep, so be sure to have water, popsicles, broth, jello, clear fruit juices (no pulp) or soft drinks to drink after the prep.
During a colonoscopy, tissue samples can be collected in a procedure called a biopsy. Colonoscopy may also be used to remove abnormal growths, screen for cancer or precancerous growths in the colon or rectum (polyps). A Colonoscopy can help locate abnormalities, such as colon polyps, tumors, inflammation, and ulcers.
The colonoscopy is also done for certain symptoms and surveillance of certain diseases:
- Blood in the stool or rectal bleeding
- Black stools
- Chronic diarrhea
- Cause of iron deficiency anemia
- Cause of sudden, unexplained weight loss
- Abnormal results from a stool test, a barium enema test, or a CT/MRI scan of the abdomen
- Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
- Stomach pain
Here are the two types of preps typically used for the procedure:
- Suprep Bowel Prep Kit – Procedure Preperation
- GoLytely Prep
Both of these preps were studied in a head-to-head study and showed to be equally effective. The GoLytely prep comes in generic, so typically less expensive and covered by most insurance. The Suprep offers less volume and can be a bit more expensive.
The staff is highly committed to ensuring your Colonoscopy is thoroughly performed in a warm, comfortable atmosphere. We take every effort to ensure your complete comfort. Please feel free to address any concerns you have about the procedure. We are happy to answer all of your questions