Why Are Initial Colonoscopies So Important?


Routine colorectal screenings are among the most effective tools for protecting against or diagnosing colon and rectal cancer in the early stages. However, about half of eligible adults have not received their first colonoscopy procedure. As specified by the American Cancer Society (ACS), those with an average risk of developing colon or rectal cancer should have their initial colonoscopy screening when they turn 45.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reveals that millions of adults in the United States are not undergoing their colon cancer screenings as recommended, diminishing the chance for diagnosing the disease early. To determine your eligibility for an initial colonoscopy, reach out to the team at Texas Digestive Disease Consultants and schedule a consultation. Our accomplished GI doctors regularly conduct colonoscopies for patients throughout the DFW area.

What is a colonoscopy exam?

A colonoscopy is a type of colorectal cancer evaluation that consists of a thin, bendable device fitted with a small camera inserted through the rectum and into the colon. Our Texas Digestive Disease Consultants team performs colonoscopies to evaluate for growths (polyps) or other abnormalities that might exist. In the event that polyps or abnormal tissues are found, they can be removed during the procedure and then tested for pathology. Individuals are provided a safe, quick-acting sedative before the colonoscopy that will help them to undergo the process in comfort.

What should you expect after having a colonoscopy?

When your initial colonoscopy screening is over and the anesthesia begins to wear off, our DFW gastroenterology team will discuss any findings or the need for additional testing with you. If we do detect an issue that warrants further analysis, our GI specialists will design a detailed treatment plan individualized for your healthcare concerns. We strongly suggest that you have a family member or friend drive you home following your procedure. Once all sensations of the sedative medication have subsided, you should find yourself able to resume your normal activities and diet within 24 hours. In some cases, people experience minor symptoms after the fact, such as abdominal discomfort, bloating, and excess gas for a few days. Should you be affected by extreme discomfort, bleeding, or fever, seek medical attention right away.

How often should you undergo a colonoscopy?

Doctors recommend that people who have an average chance of getting colorectal cancer start screenings when they are 45. Routine colonoscopy evaluations should happen every ten years up until a person turns 75. After age 75, every patient should speak with their GI doctor about screening procedures that best meet their unique requirements.

Why should you schedule regular colon cancer screenings?

While a colonoscopy screening can identify the initial stages of colorectal cancer, the evaluation can also help doctors find possible reasons for other gastrointestinal concerns, such as hemorrhoids, a chronic change in bowel habits (constipation and/or loose stools), anorectal/abdominal discomfort, bleeding and anemia, and sudden inexplicable weight loss. The exceedingly trained gastrointestinal doctors at Texas Digestive Disease Consultants specialize in advanced technology and processes to diagnose and address numerous diseases of the digestive tract.

Where can I set up my first colonoscopy in DFW?

Periodic colon and rectal cancer screenings are the leading option for finding this concerning health condition. If you are over the age of 45 and carry an average risk of colon or rectal cancer, we recommend that you set up your initial colonoscopy screening at Texas Digestive Disease Consultants as soon as you can. Reach out to us today to reserve your consultation with one of our DFW gastroenterologists.