In this diagnostic procedure, a long flexible tube with a tiny video camera at the tip (colonoscope) is inserted through the rectum. This allows the doctor to view the interior of the entire colon on a video screen.

Who is a candidate for a colonoscopy?

If you are 50 or older with an average risk of colon cancer, your doctor may recommend a colonoscopy every ten years. You may need earlier or more frequent screening if you have:

  • A family history of colorectal cancer or polyps
  • Previous polyps or colorectal cancer
  • Intestinal symptoms that warrant further examination
  • History of inflammatory bowel disease
  • Family history of hereditary colorectal cancer syndrome

What can I expect with a colonoscopy?

  • You may be asked not to eat any solid food the day before a colonoscopy and to limit your drinks to clear liquids. The doctor may also recommend a laxative in preparation for the procedure. 
  • A colonoscopy typically takes 30 to 60 minutes. 
  • You may be given a mild sedative in combination with pain medication. 
  • You will lie on your side on the exam table. The doctor will insert the colonoscope into your rectum and pump air or carbon dioxide through the scope to inflate the colon and provide a better view.
  • The scope is long enough to cover the length of your entire colon. It contains a tiny video camera that sends images to an external screen, enabling the doctor to examine the interior of your colon. 
  • If necessary, the doctor can insert surgical instruments through the scope channel to take biopsies or remove polyps or abnormal tissue.

What is the colonoscopy recovery time?

You may need approximately one hour after the procedure to recover from the sedative. Plan to have someone there to drive you home. It can take up to a day for the effects of the sedative to wear off entirely. You may experience some gas and bloating for a few hours after the exam. If our surgeon removed a polyp during your colonoscopy, you might need to eat a special diet temporarily. There may be a small amount of blood with a bowel movement after the procedure, typically only experienced for a few days.

Why choose us for colonoscopy in Mount Vernon, IL?

At Advanced Surgical Technology in Mount Vernon, IL, we are a multidisciplinary practice that offers the highest level of surgical and nonsurgical care. Our office-based laboratory makes service faster and more convenient. We believe our patients deserve unparalleled, comprehensive treatment, diagnostics, and screening.

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FAQ

Do I need another colonoscopy if my results are negative?

A colonoscopy is negative if the examination reveals no abnormalities in the colon. If you are at average risk for colon cancer, your doctor may recommend another colonoscopy in 10 years. However, if you have a history of polyps or abnormalities in previous colonoscopies, your doctor may recommend another examination in five years.

What happens if the doctor finds polyps during a colonoscopy?

Most polyps are not cancerous. If any polyps are discovered during your colon examination, they will be removed and sent to the lab for analysis. Your doctor will likely recommend another colonoscopy. The length of time between this diagnostic test will reflect the number, size, and cell characteristics of the polys and your risk factors for colon cancer.

What are the benefits of a colonoscopy?

Colorectal cancer is the third most common type of cancer among men and women in the U.S. The major benefits of a colonoscopy are:

  • Helps detect the early signs of colorectal cancer.
  • Allows your doctor to remove polyps that could become cancerous.

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