Southwest Valley Surgical Associates
Surgeons located in Goodyear, AZ
One of the rites of passage into the second half of your life is the colonoscopy, which is usually recommended when you turn 50. This harmless procedure is one of the best tools you have for screening for cancer, making it well worth your while. At Southwest Valley Surgical Associates, Dr. Rama Muddaraj and his team provide colonoscopies to their patients in Goodyear, Arizona helping them stay one step ahead of their health. To book your colon screening, call the office or use the online tool to schedule an appointment.
Colonoscopy Q & A
What is a colonoscopy?
A colonoscopy is a procedure that allows your doctor to get a look inside your rectum and large intestine to check for any abnormalities.
Why do I need a colonoscopy?
There are several reasons why you may need a colonoscopy, and chief among them is the role it plays in screening you for colorectal cancer after the age of 50.
Cancers of the colon and rectum can be very dangerous, and they’re the third leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States, among both men and women. Regarding numbers, these cancers are expected to cause the deaths of over 50,000 people in 2018.
The good news is that while these numbers may seem large, they’ve been steadily declining over the past few decades, thanks to the valuable screening that a colonoscopy provides. Not only can your doctor look for any problems, but they can remove any polyps inside your colon and rectum before they become cancerous.
There are other reasons, outside of cancer screening, why your doctor may recommend a colonoscopy, including:
- Abdominal pain
- Rectal bleeding
- A dramatic and persistent change in your bowel habits
What is a colonoscopy procedure like?
A colonoscopy procedure is nothing to worry about, despite its reputation. The hardest part is the lead-up to the actual procedure when you have to clean out your large intestine. That typically entails not eating for a prescribed length of time and taking laxatives.
Once you arrive for your procedure, your doctor further flushes out your intestine with an enema to get a clear view of the walls of your colon and rectum.
Before the procedure, your doctor gives you something to sedate and relax you. Once you’re comfortable, your doctor threads a small, flexible instrument outfitted with a camera through your rectum and travels the length of your colon, searching for any abnormalities or polyps.
If there are any polyps or other abnormalities, they're removable during the procedure.
How often do I need a colonoscopy?
If the results of your first colonoscopy are within normal limits, expect to undergo the procedure once every 10 years. If, however, your doctor removes polyps and a subsequent biopsy turns up results that bear watching, you may need another screening in five years or even sooner.
To get started on this all-important screening, call Southwest Valley Surgical Associates, or schedule an appointment using the online booking tool.