A colonoscopy is a procedure performed by a gastroenterologist who will use a tiny video camera to look inside your colon. You will be given a medication through IV which will make you relaxed and drowsy, but remain awake and cooperative. The medication will prevent you from remembering the procedure, and there should be little or no discomfort.
A colonoscopy is a safe and effective way to evaluate problems such as blood loss, pain, and changes in bowel habits such as chronic diarrhea or abnormalities that may have first been detected by other tests. This procedure can also check for colon cancer and to treat colon polyps – abnormal growths on the inside lining of the intestine.
During this procedure your physician is also able to painlessly remove a suspicious-looking growth or to take a biopsy for further analysis. In this way, colonoscopy may help to avoid surgery or to better define what type of surgery may need to be done.
The following factors may increase your chances of developing colorectal cancer: being overweight or obese, not being physically active, certain types of diets (high in red meat), smoking, and alcohol use.
The most important thing you can do is regular colorectal cancer screens (colonoscopy). Other preventative techniques include controlling your body weight, being physically active, and having a well balanced diet high in vegetables, fruits, and whole grains.