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COLONOSCOPY

WHAT IS A COLONOSCOPY?

Colonoscopy is a very useful tool for preventing cancer of the colon, rectum, and portions of the small bowel. It is a non-surgical procedure that uses a lighted scope to examine the lining of the colon.

The colon “scope” is essentially a long tube that uses fiber optic technology to provide very detailed images in real time. During the procedure, the patient is sedated and the scope is inserted into the rectum and advanced carefully until all areas of the colon are examined.

Common findings with a Colonoscopy include:

  • Colon Polyps
  • Diverticulosis
  • Hemorrhoids
  • Colitis


“Average risk” patients are recommended to have a screening colonoscopy at age 45.

WHAT IS COLON CANCER?

Overview

Colon cancer is one of the most common cancers in the world and screening for average risk individuals begins at age 45. An early growth arising from the surface (mucosa) of the colon is thought to be the first critical step in the pathway to colon cancer.

Statistics

According to the World Health Organization – colon cancer is the third most common cancer diagnosed in men and second in women. In the US, there are approximately 150,000 new cases of colon cancer diagnosed each year.

Risk Factors

There are many factors that may raise the risk of developing colon cancer. It is important to be aware of traits that may have been inherited, medical conditions, and behaviors that may raise our risks. Individuals with elevated risk may need early colonoscopy and more intensive monitoring.

Protective Factors

There is an equally long list of factors that may lower the risk of colon cancer. Diet, lifestyle, vitamins, nutrients, and medications may play a role in lowering cancer rates. The science of lowering cancer risk is an area of active research and we hope for new breakthroughs in the future.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION & RESOURCES

Research

Understanding the causes of colon cancer are quite complex and certainly arise from interplay between diet, lifestyle, and genetic predisposition. Polygenic profiling is a new field of science that studies millions of acquired mutations to determine colon cancer risk.

Community

Follow us on social media for updates and new research for preventing colon cancer.

FAQs

Our main practice location is:
Neighborhood Gastroenterology & Nutrition
2006 Macy Drive
Roswell, GA 30076

No. We only do medical consultation and lab testing in our main office. Colonoscopy and other procedures requiring sedation are performed in a surgery center. Colonoscopy can be performed at these centers:
Following your office visit with our team, we will send a request to your insurance company to approve the procedure. Once approved, our scheduler will be in touch to select a date, time, and location for your colonoscopy. For healthy patients needing a screening colonoscopy, direct colonoscopy scheduling may be a possibility. Direct colonoscopy scheduling does not require an office visit. Our medical staff will need to ask a few questions and decide if this is a good option.
After your clinic visit, our office will provide a packet with important details about your upcoming procedure. The packet will go over instructions for diet, medications, the colon prep, as well as the location of your procedure. Be sure to review the checklist and contact our office for any remaining questions.
  • Go Lytely Prep
  • Suprep
  • Miralax / Gatorade Prep

The details for each prep can be located in your information packet.

For mild nausea, cramping, and bloating, we often recommend slowing down and taking mini breaks as needed. We can also prescribe anti-nausea medications to help reduce symptoms.

For severe nausea, vomiting, or pain, we recommend stopping the prep completely and if symptoms don’t improve rapidly, go to your local ER for evaluation.

Yes. You will need to arrange a ride to and from the surgery center. Patients are not allowed to drive, take a cab, or Uber after an endoscopic procedure.
We recommend a follow up visit after testing so that you can review results with the medical team and decide next steps. Usually visits are scheduled 1-2 weeks after a test is performed. This allows time for our center to receive biopsy and pathology reports taken during your procedure.
Our practice is primarily an outpatient center. We recommend any patient with severe symptoms to go to their local ER. Most hospitals have dedicated teams of doctors working in the hospital 24 hours per day and are able to quickly evaluate severe complaints.
Fortunately, patients are given sedation by an anesthesia team and this has virtually eliminated the element of pain or discomfort during a colonoscopy. The most common sedation medication used is called Propofol which appears to be very safe and effective. The patient is typically asleep for the entire procedure and monitored closely for adequate respiration, pulse, and blood pressure.