Colonoscopy Procedure – A Guide for Beginners

November 12, 2012

Colonoscopy Procedure - A Guide for Beginners

A colonoscopy procedure refers to an examination of the colon and rectum, which can properly evaluate various gastrointestinal symptoms, like intestinal and rectal bleeding, bowel habit changes and abdominal pain.

Before the Procedure

To successfully complete a colonoscopy procedure, the patient will need to read the instructions on bowel preparation beforehand and follow them to a tee. The bowel will also need to be cleaned out to ensure that the doctor gets a clear view of the colon. Remember: without enough preparation, a colonoscopy could go horribly wrong and the doctor might have to redo the procedure all over again.

If you feel nauseous or want to vomit at any point while preparing your bowels for the procedure, wait for half an hour before drinking some water, eating some soda crackers and walking around for a bit. This might effectively reduce your feelings of nausea. If these tips do not help, though, then you will need to ask your doctor for advice.

During the Procedure

During the colonoscopy procedure, the doctor will insert a colonoscope into the rectum in order to look at the colon lining. If needed, he will also take out some bits of tissue for analysis. If polyps exist, he might get rid of them, as well. A lot of the time, this procedure will allow for an accurate diagnosis and potential treatment of various colorectal issues without having to resort to surgery.

  • You will need to put on a hospital gown.

  • You will be given pain relievers and intravenous sedatives to relax you and make you a little drowsy.

  • You will have to lie on your side and draw your knees up to your chest.

  • You might feel mild cramps during this procedure. If you do, just breathe deeply and slowly.

  • This procedure usually lasts around half an hour to an hour.

After the Procedure

  • You will have to stay at the hospital until you have been discharged by your doctor.

  • You might feel like passing gas.

  • You will not be allowed to drive for up to 24 hours if you were given medication during the colonoscopy procedure.

  • You will be able to eat normally right after the procedure, but you will have to wait 24 hours before resuming your other daily activities.

  • If polyps were removed, you might experience light bleeding in your rectum for a couple of days. If the bleeding is heavy or if you are passing clots or feel abdominal pain, report the problem to your doctor immediately.

If you cannot keep the appointment given to you for your colonoscopy procedure, make sure you let your doctor know about the situation. The same goes for if you have questions regarding the procedure, in general.

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