Colonoscopy is the
examination of the rectum and large intestine (colon) through a
telescopic tube which is passed through the anus (or back passage).
Why is it needed?
allows the doctor to see inside the large intestine, and if necessary
take a small sample of tissue (biopsy). This can be important is
determining if there is a problem which may be causing pain, bleeding or
problems with your bowel motions. It can also help rule out infections
or growths in the large intestine or rectum.
It is important to
inform the hospital and/or doctor of any health problems, allergies or
reactions to drugs that you have that you know about. You may need to
take some drugs and enemas to help clean out the bowel before the test.
You should arrange for someone to both drive you to the hospital and
collect you from there after the colonoscopy.
What does it
You may be given a
mild sedative to make you sleepy during the procedure. The tube is
flexible (like a narrow garden hose) and is passed through your anus
(back passage) up into your large intestine. Sometimes a small sample
of lining (biopsy) is taken for analysis in the laboratory.
Are there any
This is very a very
safe procedure. You may feel pain and pass wind. Rarely you may pass a
small amount of blood. Extremely rarely there may be damage to the
intestine especially if there is a blockage - if this does occur you
will kept in hospital.
What happens after
When you are fully
recovered you will be allowed to go home. This is usually an hour or
two later. If you have been given any sedative you should be driven
home and should not drive or operate any machinery for 24 hours after
You will need to see
the doctor (or your own GP) at a later time to discuss the results of
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