Colonoscopy Lower Endoscopy PreOp® Patient Education and Engagement


PreOp® Colonoscopy Lower Endoscopy Your doctor has recommended that you have
a Colonoscopy, also called a lower endoscopy. It is a procedure to examine your colon. This video will help you to understand this
procedure. Let’s begin by reviewing information about
your body. The colon is the large intestine where digestion
is completed. Water is absorbed and waste becomes solid
stool. The rectum is the lowest part of the colon. During a colonoscopy procedure the inside
of the colon is inspected for problems. The procedure is used for both colon cancer
screening and diagnostic testing. The American Cancer Association recommends
that colon cancer screening start at age 50 for early detection and prevention. Patients at high risk should be screened sooner,
especially those with or a family history. There are many ways to screen patients for
colon cancer. A colonoscopy is the most complete way to
screen for colon cancer because the entire inside of the colon is examined. Polyps can be removed and suspicious growths
can be biopsied. A colonoscopy can also be used as a diagnostic
procedure to look for a suspected mass or abnormality, and to investigate a symptom
or complaint such as belly pain, bloody stool, constipation and diarrhea. A colonoscopy procedure is done using a long
flexible scope, this is an instrument with a light and camera at the tip. The scope makes it possible to see and operate
on hard to reach areas of the colon without making a cut or incision in the skin. Tools such as scissors, graspers and cautery
can be used through the scope to biopsy, remove abnormal tissue and stop bleeding if needed. Your doctor is searching for dangling pieces
of tissue called polyps, and any other lumps or worrisome changes to the colon. If biopsies and tissue samples are collected,
they are sent to a pathology lab for examination. Before the procedure you will do a colon prep
to empty all stool from your large intestine. The prep usually starts the morning before
the procedure with a clear liquid diet. Laxative medications to flush out your stool
begin later in the afternoon. An enema may be recommended. Your prep details are based on your situation
and your doctor’s preferences. You will need to be prepared before starting
the prep,read and understand your prep instructions, especially when to start. Have clear liquids available to drink, nothing
with red or purple dye, And have your prep solution, laxatives and
medications ready. After starting the laxatives during the prep
you will have many liquid stools that should become clear and watery. You will need to stay close to a toilet. Soft flushable wipes and vaseline can be helpful
if the skin on your bottom becomes sore. If you have difficulty with the prep, let
your care team know before the procedure. The effectiveness of the colonoscopy can be
limited by stool that has not cleared and can hide problem areas. You may be advised to reschedule and follow
a different prep. Also, the shape of a colon can be too long
or curvy for the scope to get to where it needs to be. In this case a different test may be recommended
Now let’s look closer at the colonoscopy procedure. To start you will be positioned comfortably. You will be given medication to help you relax
or sleep during the procedure. A well lubricated scope is gently placed in
your rectum. Using the light and camera lens of the scope
to see, your doctor guides the scope to reach the other end of your colon. You may feel some pressure or tugging, but
you shouldn’t feel pain. The entire inside of the colon is carefully
inspected. Individual colon polyps if found, may be removed
for testing. If a mass or lesion is seen, it may be painlessly
biopsied or removed using a tool through the scope. After the entire colon has been examined the
scope is removed and the procedure is complete. After surgery “speak-up” and tell your
care-team if you have more than expected pain or problems. You may feel awake quickly. However the anesthesia medications will affect
you for the first day. During the first 24 hours after the procedure
do not drive or operate machinery. You will need a ride home. Plan to rest for the remainder of the day. Do not make important decisions and do not
drink After the colonoscopy you may have gas pain
from air in your colon. Relaxing on your side in bed or taking a warm
shower may help you to pass any gas. You may see a small amount of blood in your
stool for a few days if biopsies were done. Rarely serious problems can happen such as
a tear or injury to the colon. Bleeding or infection may result. Call your doctor to be seen if you have a
fever, worsening abdominal pain or have bleeding from your rectum that doesn’t stop. Hospital admission, medication or surgery
may be needed to fix some complications. To avoid cancellation or complications from
anesthesia or your procedure, your job as the patient is to
not eat, drink or chew gum after midnight, the night before the procedure unless you
are given different instructions take only medications you were told to on
the morning of the procedure with a sip of water
follow instructions regarding aspirin and blood thinners before surgery, as you may
be asked to stop or continue taking them depending on your situation,
and arrive on time. You should be ready to verify or confirm your
list of medical problems and surgeries, all of your medications, including vitamins and
supplements, your current smoking, alcohol and drug use and all allergies, especially
to medications, latex and tape. Before you have this procedure it is your
job to speak up and ask if you still have questions about why it is recommended for
you, the risks and alternatives. Also understand the risk of not having the
procedure. This video is intended as a tool to help you
to better understand the procedure that you are scheduled to have or are considering. It is not intended to replace any discussion,
decision making or advice of your physician.

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