Frequently asked questions about colonoscopies
What will a colonoscopy tell me?
Colonoscopies not only detect polyps, but they also allow your doctor to explore possible causes of abdominal pain, rectal bleeding, chronic constipation, chronic diarrhea and other intestinal problems.
Why is it important to get a colonoscopy?
Colon cancer is one of the most common cancers in both men and women. The good news is, it’s preventable. A colonoscopy screening allows doctors to find and remove any polyps that could become cancerous later.
Who should have a colonoscopy?
The American Cancer Society has lowered its recommended age for a screening from 50 to 45, though the current standard is still age 50 per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The CDC is reviewing its guidelines — which most insurance carriers follow — and could soon be in alignment with ACS recommendations.
How often should I get a colonoscopy?
It is recommended that people have a colonoscopy every five to 10 years after the first exam. People at higher-than-average risk, including those with a personal or family history of colorectal cancer, polyps or inflammatory bowel disease, may be advised to get screened earlier and more frequently. The American Cancer Society recommends people in good health with a life expectancy of more than 10 years continue to get regular colorectal cancer screenings through at least age 75.
Should I get a colonoscopy after age 75?
The ACS recommends talking with your primary care provider about the pros and cons of screening after age 75 based on your health and personal preferences. People over age 85 are no longer advised to get screened for colorectal cancer. Talk with your primary care provider about if a colonoscopy is right for you and contact your insurance carrier to find out which screenings your policy covers and at what age.
Is now a safe time to get a colonoscopy?
Some patients have been asking whether now is a good time to have a colonoscopy — or should they wait? We want you to know that Asante’s clinics and hospitals take every precaution to ensure your safety. Our staff, patients and visitors wear masks and clean their hands often. We sanitize at regular intervals and maintain proper physical distancing.