A Colonoscopy is a medical procedure that examines the large bowel. A colonoscopy can be used to look for colon polyps or bowel cancer and to help diagnose symptoms such as unexplained diarrhoea, abdominal pain or blood in the stool. Early cancers and polyps can be removed at the same time.
During a colonoscopy, the gastroenterologist inserts a long, thin, flexible tube called a colonoscope into the patient’s rectum. The instrument is equipped with a tiny video camera and light at its tip. The camera sends a video image to a monitor, allowing the doctor to examine the patient’s large intestine. The doctor removes any polyps discovered in the intestine and may remove small pieces of other types of abnormal tissue for further examination.
Before the procedure begins, an IV is placed in the patient’s vein so that medications for sedation can be given quickly. The patient is connected to equipment that monitors heart rate, blood pressure, and oxygen levels. The patient also receives oxygen through the nose.
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