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Colonoscopy Side Effects

Are you due for a colonoscopy but keep procrastinating? Don't let fears of side effects keep you from the benefits of a colonoscopy exam. After all, unless you are at high risk, you only need a colonoscopy exam about once every ten years between the ages of 50 and 75. So that's only about two to three times you will need to go through the process.

Side Effects:

Side effects are very rare, and tend to be mild. You may have some light cramping or gas pains for a short while after your colonoscopy. If one or more polyps has been removed, you may notice some blood in your stool for a day or two after the exam.

It is possible to experience a perforation in the intestinal lining during a colonoscopy. This is considered a serious side effect, and will require surgery to repair. This is extremely rare, and should not keep you from going ahead with being tested.

Colorectal cancer kills millions of people each year. Around 60% of those deaths could have been prevented if they would have had a colonoscopy. The side effects are rare, and compared to the pain of colorectal cancer, it is a small inconvenience to bear.

Getting a Colonoscopy:

The procedure itself is not that intimidating, and the staff at The Houston Colonoscopy Center are committed to going above and beyond to make you as comfortable as possible. We appreciate that this is a stressful procedure for most of our patients.

During a colonoscopy, you will be lightly sedated. If you are extremely anxious, discuss the possibility of a deeper level of sedation with your colonoscopy doctor. You will lay on your left side, and the doctor will insert the colonoscope slowly into your anus and into the colon.  A colonoscope is a long, thin, flexible tube with a light and camera. The large intestine is then inflated with carbon dioxide gas to give the doctor a better view. As the doctor moves the colonoscope, images of the intestine appear on a computer screen. The colonoscope is then gently pushed throughout the lower intestine, up to the small intestine opening. Then it is withdrawn, and the intestinal lining is given a final exam.

While a colonoscopy is commonly used to detect colorectal cancer, it may also be used to diagnose gastrointestinal bleeding, ulcers, inflammatory bowel disease, tumors, abdominal pain and unexplained weight loss.

Don't put off your healthcare another day. Call the staff at The Houston Colonoscopy Center today to set up your colonoscopy screening. Colonoscopy side effects are quite mild compared to the effects of colorectal cancer.