Flexible sigmoidoscopy is a procedure that allows your physician to look at the inside of your large intestine from the rectum through the last part of the colon. Physicians may use the procedure to find the cause of diarrhea, abdominal pain, or constipation. They also use it to look for early signs of cancer in the descending colon and rectum. With flexible sigmoidoscopy, the physician can see bleeding, inflammation, abnormal growths, and ulcers in the descending colon and rectum.
For the procedure, you will lie on your left side on the examining table. The physician will use a short, flexible tube with a camera to look inside your rectum and colon.
If the physician notices anything unusual such as a polyp or inflamed tissue, the physician can remove a piece of it using instruments inserted into the scope. The physician will send that piece of tissue (biopsy) to the lab for testing.