Posts for: January, 2018
Have you put off having a colonoscopy? The minimally invasive provides valuable information about the condition of your lower gastrointestinal tract. Gastroenterologists Dr. Umesh Choudry and Dr. Gourisankar (Shankar) Degala of Advanced Digestive Care in Clearwater, FL, explain why you won't want to put off scheduling a colonoscopy.
Colonoscopies can detect cancer
More than 135,000 people are diagnosed with colon or rectal cancer yearly, according to the American Cancer Association. Before colonoscopies were introduced, the cancers weren't usually detected until they were very advanced. Unfortunately, at that point, the prognosis was not good.
Thanks to innovative technology that spurred the development of miniature cameras and surgical equipment, gastroenterologists can now view the lining of your large intestine (colon) and the lower part of your small intestine remotely.
If a polyp is spotted during your colonoscopy, it will be removed and sent to a laboratory for analysis. Although polyps can be cancerous or pre-cancerous, many of them don't contain cancerous or abnormal cells.
Colonoscopies can reveal the source of your gastrointestinal symptoms
Thanks to colonoscopies, your gastroenterologist can detect the source of your painful symptoms, such as bleeding, strictures, blockages, gastroesophageal reflux disorder (GERD) and Barrett's esophagus. Some conditions can even be treated during the colonoscopy. For example, gastroenterologists can cauterize bleeding areas in the lining of your intestines. Colonoscopies are often used to diagnose the cause of anemia, abdominal pain, change in bowel habits, rectal bleeding, chronic diarrhea or unexplained weight loss.
Colonoscopy is a painless procedure
Before your procedure begins, you'll be given a strong sedative that will prevent pain and ensure that you don't remember anything about the colonoscopy. Once you're sedated, a thin, flexible probe called a colonoscope will be inserted into your anus, then slowly passed through your colon and part of your small intestine. As the colon passes through these structures, a lighted, miniature camera will transmit images to a digital screen. When you wake up, your doctor will explain what he saw during the procedure and explain the next steps, if any are needed. If a tissue biopsy was taken during the colonoscopy, you'll need to return to our Clearwater office in a few weeks to discuss the results.
Colonoscopies help protect your gastrointestinal health. If you're over 50 and haven't had a colonoscopy yet, or are troubled by gastrointestinal symptoms, call gastroenterologists Dr. Choudry and Dr. Degala of Advanced Digestive Care in Clearwater, FL, at (727) 462-0444 to schedule your appointment.