Have you been wondering if you need a colonoscopy? Your Houston gastroenterologists at Houston Digestive Diseases Consultants in TX can help you decide if you could benefit from this important test.
How colonoscopies work
During a colonoscopy, your gastroenterologist views the lining of your large intestine remotely using digital technology. During the test, he inserts a thin, lighted scope that contains a miniature camera into your anus and slowly passes it through your large intestine, also known as the colon.
The camera sends images to the digital monitor, giving your Houston gastroenterologist a real-time view of your large intestine. Colonoscopies are performed while you're sedated or anesthetized. After you wake up, your Houston gastroenterologist will tell you what he saw during the procedure.
Most people can leave the Houston colonoscopy facility an hour or two after the procedure. Although you'll feel alert after your colonoscopy, you'll need to ask someone to drive you home, as the sedative or anesthesia could slow your reaction time.
Colonoscopies are an important cancer screening tool
Colon cancer doesn't cause any symptoms until it's quite advanced. By that time, it is challenging to treat. Colonoscopies allow your Houston gastroenterologist to find lesions or polyps in the lining of your large intestine. Polyps can be non-cancerous, cancerous, or pre-cancerous. During the colonoscopy, your doctor will remove polyps and take tissue samples of any suspicious areas.
You may have heard that you should have a colonoscopy for the first time at age 50. That recommendation was lowered to age 45 for both men and women a few years ago.
Colonoscopies help your gastroenterologist diagnose and treat gastrointestinal health issues
Colonoscopies can also be used to determine the cause of:
- Frequent diarrhea
- Chronic constipation
- Abdominal pain
- Rectal bleeding
- Bowel movement changes
- Unexplained weight loss
In some cases, your gastroenterologist can treat the issue using tiny tools. For example, bleeding might be stopped by cauterizing (sealing with heat) bleeding vessels in the large intestine lining.
Colonoscopies help you protect your health! Schedule an appointment with your gastroenterologists in Houston TX at Houston Digestive Diseases Consultants by calling (713) 777-2555 for the Memorial Hermann Southwest office, (713) 796-8627 for the Smith Tower office, or (713) 880-8707 for the Memorial Hermann Greater Heights office.