The colonoscopy procedure is to examine the colon (large intestine) internally, they do this by using an instrument with a small camera called a colonoscope.
How is the Colonoscopy procedure Performed
Colonscopy procedure can see the entire length of the colon by the use of a very flexible tube a Sigmoidoscopy is used to look at the lower part of the colon only.
The patient is administered a painkiller and a sedative some people may ask to be put out completely, having a general anaesthetic does carry certain risks. During the colonoscopy procedure the patient will need to be lay on your side with your knees drawn up towards the chest.
The colonoscopy is gently inserted into the anus, and the lower part of the bowel, at this point in the colonoscopy procedure air will be added. The purpose for air inserted through the scope is to give the surgeon a better view and more space to look.
During the colonoscopy procedure, the surgeon will examine the colon and rectum, a more throughout examination can be made when the instrument is being pulled back out.
The examiner may want to take tissue samples or if there are any polyps in the colon these can be removed for further examination and testing.
What is a colonoscopy procedure used to determine
- Polps- tumors which are usually non-cancerous they can be removed during the colonoscopy procedure
- Diverticulosis and diverticulitis- pockets along the intestinal wall
- Unusal bleeding
- Bleeding in the stools
- IBS- irritable bowel syndrome
- Chrones disease
Preparation for colonoscopy procedure
Before a colonoscopy is carried out it is normal practice to have a consultation, during this first meeting the doctor will advice on how to prepare for the test. The preparation is different dependant on age and previous experiences.
For an adult, the preparation is usually as follows:
So the examiner can see the colon properly during the colonoscopy procedure your bowel needs to be completely cleansed, you will be given precise instructions from the doctor. Usually laxatives or enemas are given, and advised not to eat solid food for 2 to 3 days before the colonoscopy procedure. You may be told to stop taking any blood- thinning tablets for example, ibuprofen, aspirin or naproxen.
What to expect during colonoscopy procedure
Some patients do not remember having the colonoscopy procedure carried out due to the sedative. A rectal examination is usually done first to make sure there are no obstructions, this also helps the rectum dilate. When the colonoscope is inserted it is normal to have the urge to go to the toilet. Cramping may be felt when the air is inserted through the scope, passing gas afterwards is inevitable as your colon has been pumped with air.
If you are not planning on staying in overnight, it is important to have somebody with you to take you home. If you have been sedated for the colonoscopy procedure, then you will not be allowed to drive for up to 48 hours.