The trained family doctors at Village Health Partners in Plano, TX, offer colon cancer screening for men and women who have symptoms of colon disease, have a family history of it, or are of a certain age appropriate for screening. Colon cancer is the second most common cause of cancer deaths among men and women combined, with close to 135,000 new diagnosis’ each year in the U.S. Thankfully, many cases of colon cancer are detected early because of procedures designed specifically to catch the disease. Our medical office offers a colon cancer screening exam known as a colonoscopy, which allows our practitioners to gain access and a close-up look at the inside of the colon and rectum. With annual colon screenings, patients can decrease the risks of developing this cancer and catch polyps early should they exist.
What to Expect
Before the actual colonoscopy exam, a patient will need to prep for about 1-2 days. This involves drinking a fluid provided by our office the day before to help eliminate and clean out the colon. A prescription laxative may also be given. The colon prep will cause loose stools and diarrhea, and some patients will experience cramping. Because patients are put under for this exam, they usually feel that the test prep is the worst part of the overall process. Some preps can be taken the night before, while others may take an entire day. The most important part of the prep is that the colon is clear of any bowels prior to the actual exam. We will provide detailed instructions during the pre-exam visit.
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During the Exam
During a colonoscopy, a colonscope is used, which is a thin, flexible tube that has a small camera attached to the end of it. This device is inserted through the anus and into the colon where the camera allows the physician to look at the entire colon. An image of the inside of the organ displays on a computer monitor and takes pictures of any abnormal growths, and checks for precancerous or cancerous polyps. During the procedure, if an abnormality is detected, tissue samples will be collected. This is known as a biopsy and will be used for further testing.
From a colonoscopy, patients will learn if their colon is normal or abnormal:
- Normal: The lining has no growths, bleeding, inflammation, or polyps. It appears pink and smooth.
- Abnormal: The camera will show inflammation, possible bleeding, swollen and red areas within the lining, polyps, cancer, or hemorrhoids.
If a colonoscopy shows any abnormalities or suspicious growths, there are additional tests that can be conducted to screen for colon cancer. A sigmoidoscopy is a test, for example, that can look inside of the sigmoid colon (the area of the large intestine closest to the rectum) and rectum.
Schedule Your Colon Screening
If colon cancer runs in your family, or if you have experienced consistent symptoms associated with your bowels, please call our medical practice today to schedule an appointment. We provide colonoscopy exams routinely and have helped countless patients ease their worry by reassuring them following this simple exam. Color cancer is treatable if caught early and a colonoscopy is a proven method to catch abnormalities early. We look forward to welcoming you to our office.
Plan Your Visit
- Average Procedure Time
- 1 Hour