A colonoscopy is a diagnostic procedure that allows our physician to look at the lining of your large intestine. This is accomplished by utilizing a flexible endoscope, a long, thin, flexible tube with a light attached to the end of it. If an abnormality is observed, a picture and biopsy can be taken. If discovered, polyps (an abnormal growth of colonic tissue) can be removed through the instrument.
Two days are needed to prepare for a colonoscopy. Click here for complete instructions.
In order to minimize any discomfort you may experience during the examination, you will receive intravenous medications immediately prior to the procedure (please notify us of any known drug allergies or previous problems with anesthesia). The duration of the procedure varies, ranging from 30 to 90 minutes.
What to Expect After the Procedure
- You may feel sleepy for an hour or two after the procedure. This is due to the sedation you received at the time of the examination.
- You will expel gas post-procedure, as this was passed into the colon during your test.
- If a polyp is removed, you may receive further instructions.
- Unless you are instructed otherwise, you will be able to resume your regular diet after the procedure has been completed.
- It is rare for a patient to be admitted after the procedure.
Are there any complications that can result from colonoscopy or polypectomy procedures?
Both colonoscopy and polypectomy procedures are safe. They are associated with very low risks when performed by a physician who has been specially trained to carry out the procedure. One possible complication is perforation, in which the wall of the colon is torn and leakage of intestinal fluids takes place. This complication usually requires surgery, but may be managed conservatively in certain cases.
Bleeding may occur at the site of biopsy or polyp removal, which is why avoiding aspirin products is important to the success of the procedure. It is also important to tell the doctor about any previous dental or surgical procedures you’ve experienced.
Localized irritation of the vein may occur at the site of medication injection. It is possible that a tender lump will develop. This lump could remain for several weeks to several months, but will go away eventually. Other risks include drug reactions and complications from unrelated diseases, such as heart attack or stroke.
We also offer endoscopy services, click here to learn more.