Many people in Tirunelveli go for a colonoscopy procedure. Colonoscopy is a procedure that allows a specialist to observe the lining of the colon and rectum. It is done in most hospitals and performed as an endoscopic procedure or on an outpatient basis by a gastroenterologist in Tirunelveli.
During a colonoscopy, a smooth, bendable tube about an index finger's width is carefully inserted into the anus and moved into the rectum and colon.
When is a colonoscopy performed?
A colonoscopy is usually performed:
- As part of a routine cancer screening
- In patients who have had polyp removal or who have identified polyps
- Before or after surgeries
- To determine whether there has been an improvement in bowel patterns or bleeding
- To assess inflammatory conditions, which are variations in the lining of the intestine.
When you visit a specialist in Tirunelveli they will assess your condition and conclude whether you are suitable for a colonscopy.
What should you do to prepare for a colonoscopy?
- For the procedure to be done, the colon and rectum must be empty of stool. Preparation usually entails drinking a special detox agent or abstaining from laxatives, clear liquids and enemas for two days before the test. The specialist will inform you about how to prepare for the colonoscopy with a cleansing routine.
- You must ensure to follow the specialists' instructions carefully. If you do not follow the instructions of the specialists, the colonoscopy may be dangerous to perform, and the test may have to be rescheduled.
- You can use most of your medications normally. Aspirin, Vitamin E, blood thinners, and insulin, and other medications you might be taking, should be reviewed by a specialist before the test. You must notify the specialist if you need antibiotics before dental procedures because antibiotics might also be required before a colonoscopy.
- Since you will be sedated during the process, ensure you bring a family member along to take you back home. For the rest of the day, sedatives will affect your reflexes and judgment. You should wait till the next day to drive or use any machinery.
What do you expect from a colonoscopy?
While the procedure is generally well-tolerated, patients can experience pain, gassiness, bloating, or cramping at different points in the procedure. Your specialist will prescribe medications to help you recover and handle any pain.
When the colonoscope is advanced across the large intestine, you will be lying on your side or back. When inserting and removing the instrument, your specialist will closely inspect the lining of your colon. The treatment typically takes 15 to 60 minutes to complete. In some cases, when the entire colon cannot be examined, your specialist might suggest more examinations such as a barium enema or a CT colonography.
What if a colonoscopy reveals a problem?
If your specialist notices an area that requires further investigation, a biopsy can be taken and sent to a lab for examination. Your specialist can perform a biopsy by passing a special instrument via the colonoscope. Most polyps will be eliminated during a colonoscopy. While most polyps are benign (non-cancerous), the specialist cannot always say by their appearance.
If there are several polyps or if the polyps are big, your specialist may need to do this procedure in more than one sitting. While biopsies do not always indicate cancer, removing a colonic polyp is an effective way to avoid colon and rectal cancer.
What happens after a colonoscopy?
During your procedure or your follow-up appointment, your specialist will explain the findings to you. The air that was inserted into your colon during the test may cause slight cramping or bloating.
After leaving the hospital or clinic, you can eat as usual the next day and continue your normal activities. Since the sedatives will weaken the reflexes, do not drive or handle machines until the next day.
If sedation was used during the process, your specialist would keep you under observation until most of the sedative’s effects have worn off (1-2 hours). After the procedure, you will need someone to take you home.
You would require another colonoscopy if polyps were discovered during the procedure. Your specialist will determine the duration of your colonoscopy tests.
What are the risks of doing a colonoscopy?
Complications with colonoscopy cause blood at the site of a biopsy or polypectomy, as well as a break (perforation) of the bowel wall covering. The chances of missing polyps or other lesions are also a risk with the procedure.
If a perforation occurs, your specialist may have to perform abdominal surgery to patch the tear in the intestine. Blood transfusions are only used under special circumstances. Irritation of the vein in which medications were administered is rare, although it can result in a tender lump that lasts a few weeks. So, use towels that are warm and wet to help alleviate the pain.
If you have extreme abdominal pain, fevers, chills, or more than one-half cup of rectal bleeding, call your specialist in Tirunelveli immediately. However, remember after a biopsy, bleeding will last for several days.
This information is not intended to take the place of your discussion with our surgeon about the need for a colonoscopy. If you have questions about the exam or subsequent follow-up, please discuss them with our surgeon before or after the examination.
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