A colonoscopy is a test used to look at the lining of the bowel (colon or large intestine) using a colonscope – a long, soft flexible tube containing a tiny video camera and a light.
Why is the test done?
Reasons for having a colonoscopy include:
- To look for causes of tummy pain, bleeding from the bottom (rectum), low iron (anaemia) or weight loss.
Preparing for a colonoscopy
To be able to see the inside of the bowel clearly with the colonoscope, the bowel needs to be completely empty. In the days leading up to your colonsocopy, you will be on a special diet and will be given some laxatives (medicine to make you go to the toilet) to take to help clean out your bowel.
Some medications can interfere with the preparation for a colonoscopy. When preparing for a colonoscopy, tell you doctor or nurse what medications you are taking.
During a colonoscopy, a specially trained doctor uses a colonoscope to examine the lining of your bowel. A colonoscope is a long, thin flexible tube with a tiny camera and a light on the end.
Before the procedure, your doctor will discuss what is going to happen with you and you will have a chance to ask questions. You will need to change into a hospital gown.
When you are ready, you will be asked to lie on your side or back while the doctor gently inserts the colonoscope into your back passage and slowly moves it along the inside of your bowel.
The video camera on the colonoscope streams video images to a TV screen, allowing the doctor to see the lining of your bowel. Your doctor will examine the lining again as they slowly withdraw the colonoscope.
在结肠镜检查期间，医生还可以进行活检（肠壁的小样本）或去除任何polyps(abnormal growths in the bowel lining that are usually noncancerous) they see. Removal of polyps reduces the risk of cancer developing.
我们ually a colonoscopy is a pain-free procedure, but you might feel pressure, bloating or cramping during the procedure. Your doctor may give you a sedative or painkiller to help you relax and reduce any discomfort.
What happens after a colonoscopy?
If you have been given sedatives during the procedure, someone must drive you home and stay with you. Even if you feel alert after the procedure, your judgment and reflexes could be impaired for the rest of the day.
You might feel some cramping or bloating (gas) because of the air introduced into the colon during the examination. This should ease when you pass gas.
You should be able to eat after the examination, but your doctor might advise you to eat a special diet and not do vigorous exercise, especially if you have had polyps removed.
Are there any risks?
结肠镜检查is normally a safe procedure and complications are unusual. The risk of a significant complication is about 1 in a 1000 procedures.
As with most procedures, there are a few risks to be aware of. These are rare but include:
- Tearing of the bowel wall or a perforation.