When is a Colonoscopy Needed?

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A colonoscopy is a medical procedure for detecting colon cancer and various gastrointestinal problems, such as ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease. Everyone should undergo their first colonoscopy by the age of 50. In some cases, a colonoscopy should be performed even earlier. Based on your individual medical history, a gastroenterologist can advise you as to when you should get your first or next colonoscopy. The doctors at Triborough Gi are your gastroenterologists for colonoscopies.

Colonoscopies help gastroenterologists diagnose colon cancer and various gastrointestinal conditions, such as Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, inflammatory bowel disease, or diverticulosis. The American Cancer Society recommends that all healthy adults without gastrointestinal problems undergo a colonoscopy once they are between the ages of 45-50. It is not advisable to postpone your first colonoscopy past age 50.

Adults with a family history of colon cancer are advised to have their first colonoscopy by age 40. Additionally, adults who are experiencing unexplained gastrointestinal problems might need to get a colonoscopy sooner even if they are younger than the recommended age for a first colonoscopy. Symptoms such as abdominal pain, chronic diarrhea, chronic constipation, or blood in the stool could be indications of a more serious gastrointestinal problem. A colonoscopy can help doctors accurately diagnose the problem and prescribe an appropriate treatment.

The Colonoscopy Procedure

An instrument called a colonoscope is used to perform colonoscopies. A colonoscope is a flexible, thin tube with a small camera on one end for recording video and capturing images of the colon. During a colonoscopy, the colonoscope is gently inserted into the colon through the anus. As the colonoscope passes through the colon, your gastroenterologist is able to examine the colon’s interior by watching the video. If suspicious growths, such as polyps, are found a sample can be taken and biopsied to check for cancer.

What can I expect before, during, and after a colonoscopy?

Before your procedure, you will have specific care instructions which will usually involve drinking clear liquids only and taking a series of laxatives to clear your colon.  You will receive anesthesia medication to go to sleep & remain completely pain-free during this procedure.  After your Colonoscopy, you will be monitored in a recovery room until the anesthesia wears off, then have someone else drive you home. You may usually resume your normal activities the next day.

You should get your first colonoscopy no later than 50 years old . Remember, you might need one sooner if you have a family history of colon cancer or are experiencing gastrointestinal problems. A gastroenterologist can advise you as to how soon you should get a colonoscopy.

3 Reasons to Get a Colonoscopy (It’s Really Not a Big Deal)

  1. It is painless.

Yes, the tube goes exactly where you think it does. But you won’t feel a thing.

Colonoscopies employ monitored anesthesia. You’ll be given medicine through an IV that will keep you comfortable, virtually pain-free and unaware of the procedure.
A nurse anesthetist will administer the medicine and watch you intently—monitoring your heart, breathing and blood pressure—for the duration of the procedure, so the doctors can focus on the colonoscopy.

The only soreness you might feel after would be associated with your IV site, but that typically doesn’t hurt, that’s what our doctors at Triborough GI say.
You might pass gas with some startling force for a couple of hours after the procedure. This is normal and not painful.

  1. It is quick.

It’s recommended you take the whole day off work to recover from sedation, but going and getting a colonoscopy only takes about half a morning. (The actual procedure can take as little as 15 minutes.)
At Triborough GI if you are healthy and without bowel symptoms, you don’t have to have a consultation and then go through the process of scheduling a separate appointment. You can meet your doctor and have the procedure in the same short session.

  1. Forget what you’ve heard. Colonoscopy prep is NOT. THAT. BAD.

People like to talk about the unpleasantness of colonoscopy preparation. But over the past 15 years, colonoscopy preparation has been improved and refined. It’s not that bad anymore.

Doctors use split prep, which means you drink a prescribed laxative that will cause diarrhea for a couple of hours, starting around 7 p.m. You should be done around 10 p.m. and able to get some rest. Then, in the morning, you take the second half of the laxative. You’ll need to visit the bathroom with some urgency, but it shouldn’t be as intense as the previous evening, since the majority of your fecal matter will have been flushed out.

Then, you’re done and ready for the quick procedure.

But seriously, proper preparation is the patient’s end of the bargain. After all, this procedure might save your life. It’s the most effective when prep is done as directed.

Triborough GI has the top Nyc Gastroenterologists in Brooklyn, Staten Island and the Bronx. Our doctors provide only the most specialized and extensive care. Our motto is that the patient’s care comes first! Highly reputable and top rated in NYC, our gastroenterologists will thoroughly examine, diagnose and treat you in any way they can.

Schedule an appointment at (718) 332-0600 today with one of our Triborough GI doctors at our Brooklyn, Staten Island or Bronx locations for any questions or concerns you have regarding your Colonoscopy procedure.


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