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4 Facts About Getting a Colonoscopy

4 Facts About Getting a Colonoscopy

A colonoscopy is famous, but not for good reasons. A colonoscopy is to an adult what cooties is to a child. We don’t know what it is, but everyone says it’s bad so we better stay away from it!  Yes, the big, bad “C” inspires dread and fear in men and women over the age of 50.

Everyone has heard rumors and horror stories about the colonoscopy, but these stories are often generated by people who have never even had one! Because it is Colon Cancer Awareness Month, let’s take a moment to review a few important facts about the colonoscopy:

  1. Colonoscopy is the best screening to prevent colon cancer. There are several methods of screening for colon cancer, but nothing compares to the colonoscopy. A colonoscopy allows your doctor to view your entire colon and inspect for precancerous polyps. Using a flexible tube called a colonoscope with an attached camera, your doctor will inspect the colon for growths called polyps. If any polyps are discovered during the procedure, your doctor will remove the polyps so they never have the opportunity to become cancerous.
  2. Most patients have no memory of the colonoscopy exam. Colonoscopies are performed under conscious sedation. You will receive intravenous medication that will put you to sleep during the procedure. You will not feel pain during the colonoscopy either.
  3. The bowel preparation for colonoscopies is not as bad as people tell you. While it is true that you will have to alter your diet for a day and not eat as you normally would, colonoscopy preparation has come a long way. The split-dose method cuts the volume of prep liquid in half, so you can drink half the dose on the night before the procedure and the other half on the day of the procedure. The good news is that you can eat a normal diet after your procedure is complete.
  4. Colonoscopies save lives. It is estimated that between 60 to 90 percent of colon cancer deaths could be prevented if everyone over 50 chose to have a colonoscopy. That is 30,000 to 45,000 lives that could be saved! Colonoscopies don’t just detect cancer; they prevent cancer.

Give yourself the gift of lifelong health by scheduling a colonoscopy in the month of March, Colon Cancer Awareness Month. Now that you know more about this life-saving procedure, you can take the fear out of the “C” word. With education and awareness, we can achieve our goal of 80% by 2018.

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posted on March 6, 2017 in news