A Colonoscopy is a powerful prevention tool and is the only screening test that allows both identification and removal of polyps ( polypectomy). If colonoscopy is so effective at detecting polyps, colon cancer and saving lives, why are some people reluctant to have it?
The “Preparation.” The prep is an important obstacle in the eyes of many having a colonoscopy but it need not be!
The preparation is often a fruit-flavored laxative that causes temporary diarrhea for several hours and is often split over two days to ensure a clean colon- essential to allow good visualization of polyps.
Common Excuses to Avoid Colonoscopy
Colon polyps and early colon cancer can develop silently, waiting until symptoms occur can mean the colon cancer is more advanced and less likely to be curable.
- “I’m healthy, why get screened??”
Colorectal cancer screening is for healthy people. If we find a polyp, we remove it and prevent it from becoming colorectal cancer
- “No one in my family had Colon Cancer...”
Don’t be the first. Roughly 5 in 100 people are destined to get colon cancer in their lifetime even with no family history.
- “ I have no risk factors...”
The single biggest modifiable risk factor for Colorectal Cancer is failure to be screened!
No, colonoscopy is usually not painful. Colonoscopy is performed using “ IV Sedation” or “ twilight sedation”, in which you are very drowsy but comfortable and breathing on your own.
- “Will my insurance pay for this procedure?”
Medicare ( and most third-party payers) will pay for colonoscopy for Colorectal Cancer screening. Colonoscopy is a one step colon cancer screening test which means a precancerous polyp can be found and removed at the same time- preventing a second test or procedure and the development of Colon Cancer. For questions regarding your individual costs contact your insurance carrier.
Take control of your health.
Make a plan to talk to your healthcare provider about colorectal cancer screening and get your colonoscopy scheduled with a Care New England Gastroenterologist or Surgeon today.