As we have discussed many times before, a colonoscopy is a gastrointestinal procedure that is used to uncover where or not you are at risk for colon cancer. It is also used to determine the cause of issues like rectal pain and bleeding. For many who have not undergone this procedure, the idea of having a colonoscopy is a tad scary. This can most often be attributed to certain myths and misconceptions surrounding the procedure. Below you can find out the truth regarding having a colonoscopy and put your worries to rest.
Myth 1: Colon prep is extremely embarrassing and painful.
There is a certain process you have to participate in prior to having a colonoscopy completed. You are given a special liquid to drink that is used to empty your colon of stool. This is necessary because an empty colon is much easier to examine than a full one. While patients do claim that the most difficult part of having the procedure is drinking such a large volume of this liquid, the actual process itself is done in a respectful and private way so that patients do not feel uncomfortable.
Myth 2: If you don’t exhibit any symptoms, you don’t need to have a colonoscopy.
In the best case scenario, a colonoscopy is meant to be a preventative procedure. It can identify potentially cancerous lesions before they cause an actual threat. Additionally, colon cancer does not normally cause those it afflicts to have noticeable symptoms until it has reached an advanced stage. This is why is it incredibly important to begin having routine colonoscopy once you reach an age when you are more apt to be diagnosed, regardless of whether you experience symptoms or not.
Myth 3: Having a colonoscopy is painful.
We will not say that having a colonoscopy is a walk in the park. After all, considering what it entails, you are likely to be a bit uncomfortable. On the other hand, your physician will go out of their way to make sure you experience as little discomfort as possible. Often this includes conscious sedation known as twilight sleep. A good amount of people do not even remember their procedure because of this and very few people report having minor symptoms after their colonoscopy such as abdominal cramping.
If you are over the age of 50 and you have not had a colonoscopy to date, it’s time to make an appointment with West Gastroenterology. Call us today and we can fit you into our schedule!