Of all endoscopic procedures,you are perhaps the most familiar with a colonoscopy. The American Cancer Society recommends everyone age 50 and older have a colonoscopy. If you have a family history or other conditions, your physician may recommend that you have a colonoscopy sooner. A colonoscopy is a procedure that allows the physician to view the entire length of the large intestine, and can often help to identify abnormal growths, inflamed tissue, ulcers, and bleeding. It involves inserting a colonoscope, a long, flexible, lighted tube that is inserted into the intestine through the rectum. The colonoscope allows the physician to see the lining of the colon, remove tissue for further examination, and possibly treat some problems that are discovered.
You can actually prevent cancer if pre-cancerous polyps are caught early enough. Most polyps are not dangerous. But over time, some types of polyps can turn into cancer. To be safe, doctors remove all polyps and test them.
Sometimes, polyps cannot be removed via colonoscope. In the past, removing large polyps required open surgery. Our surgeons can now remove almost all polyps with minimally invasive techniques.
To find a Methodist Healthcare physician in Memphis, Tennessee, please use our physician locator or call 888.777.5959.