When Should I Get a Colonoscopy?

It’s pretty doubtful that a colonoscopy, an outpatient procedure in which your large bowel (the colon and rectum) is examined, is at the top of your to-do list; but, did you know that it should be?  A colonoscopy is one the most important routine medical procedures you will have performed.  According to the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (ASGE), colorectal cancer is the third most common cause of cancer deaths in the US and with a regular colonoscopy, it is almost always preventable.

Most doctors recommend a colonoscopy after you turn 50 years old and then again every 5 to 10 years after that based on health history of you or your family.  A colonoscopy can also be used to:

  • Determine the cause of abdominal pain, rectal bleeding or change in bowel habits
  • Make a proper diagnosis of digestive disorders like Crohn’s or Colon Cancer
  • Remove polyps
  • Remove tissues for a biopsy or more testing
  • Monitor response to various treatments for gastrointestinal/colorectal issues

Colon cancer can be a silent villain in that it does not show symptoms until the further stages of cancer.  Early detection can help you to live a longer and better quality of life.  Make sure to setup your Signature Medical Group gastroenterologist or colorectal specialist for a colonoscopy by clicking the “request appointment” button.