Katy Texas Colon Doctor James Maher is vastly experienced in taking care of all types of stomach problems. Get in touch with his clinic to set an appointment and make sure your stomach’s well-being is in good shape. Dr. Maher has helped countless patients get rid of stomach problems. One of the procedures that are performed is a colonoscopy, which you’ll learn more about as you read on.
What Is a Colonoscopy?
To put it simply, a colonoscopy is an exam that can find changes and abnormalities in the large intestine (colon) and the rectum. During this procedure, patients have a flexible tube inserted into the rectum. Furthermore, this flexible tube has a tiny camera at the end of it, which allows doctors to have an entire view of the insides of the colon.
For some patients, doctors will use this procedure to remove any type of abnormal tissue, such as polyps. They do so with the tool called the scope. Additionally, sometimes the procedure will be used to take biopsies. All in all, a doctor will recommend a colonoscopy to a patient if they feel the need to:
Investigate intestinal signs and symptoms
If you’re experiencing symptoms such as abdominal pain, rectal bleeding, chronic diarrhea, or constipation, a colonoscopy can help doctors explore the causes of these uncomfortable symptoms.
Screening for colon cancer
A colonoscopy can also be recommended if the patient is over the age of 50. This will be the case even if the patient shows no other signs or symptoms for colon cancer. Generally speaking, patients will be asked to take this type of test every ten years. In some cases, however, a patient may show signs that indicate the need for more frequent testing. One thing to note is that a colonoscopy is only one of the many options available for colon cancer screening.
Look for additional polyps
If you’ve had a history of polyps, then expect your doctor to ask for a follow-up colonoscopy. The reason for this is that polyps could very well still be present. It’s very important to make sure any other polyps are found to make sure they are treated properly. Discuss with your doctor how helpful a colonoscopy will be for you.
Preparing for the Procedure
In order to get the best results possible, there are certain things you can do to optimize the exam. Without proper preparation, there may be some residue in the colon that could cause problems for doctors when trying to view the insides of the colon. Here are some things that a doctor will probably ask you to do before the colonoscopy.
Follow a special diet
More than likely, you’ll be given a special diet by your doctor to properly prepare for the colonoscopy. Some things to expect are limiting your fluid intake to only clear liquids. If you are a tea or coffee drinker, you should only listen to these without milk or cream. In addition, you’ll want to make sure you stay away from carbonated beverages. Red liquids will also have to be removed from your diet as they can be confused for blood during the test. You’ll probably have to avoid eating or drinking anything starting the night before the exam.
Use an enema kit
You may be asked to use an enema kit the night before the colonoscopy or a few hours before. An over-the-counter enema kit will empty the colon, preparing it for the colonoscopy. One thing to note is that the enema kit is not the primary way of emptying the colon, as it’s only effective in emptying the lower colon.
Adjust your medications
When it comes to your medications, talk to your doctor about any adjustments that need to be made. This will be the case, especially for patients who suffer from diabetes, and for patients suffering from high blood pressure or heart problems. Moreover, medication and supplements that contain iron will also be adjusted.
You should share any medications that you take that thin the blood, such as aspirin and warfarin (Coumadin, Jantoven). Other types of medication that you need to be careful with are anticoagulants like rivaroxaban or dabigatran. For medications like these, you’ll probably have to change the dosage you take or stop taking them altogether temporarily.
During the Procedure
The patients being tested will wear a gown and nothing else. Sedatives will be used to reduce how much discomfort the patient feels. The sedative can be given in various forms. Patients will lie down on their side, with their knees drawn towards their chest. The following step is inserting the colonoscope into the patient’s rectum. The scope is used with a light and a tube that allows doctors to pump air into the colon. Inflating the colon is very helpful in giving doctors a better view of its lining.
Moreover, patients will start to feel abdominal pain when doctors begin moving the scope or during the process of pumping air. In fact, some patients may have the urge to have a bowel movement. There is a tiny camera at the end of the colonoscope, and the images it captures will be sent to a monitor. These images are used by doctors to study the inside of the colon. Additionally, the procedure may also involve taking tissue samples through a biopsy, or to remove tissues that have changed abnormally. Generally speaking, colonoscopies will typically last about 30 to 60 minutes.
After the Procedure
Patients will still be under the effects of the sedatives until about an hour after the exam is finalized. Without question, you’ll have to arrange for a ride home, as you won’t be in any state to drive. Moreover, you should avoid making any type of major decisions, and going back to work is also out of the question. In procedures where polyps were removed, patients will have to eat a special diet temporarily.
Katy Texas Colon Doctor
Katy Texas Colon Doctor James Maher can help you forget about all those stomach problems that have been bothering you. Set an appointment today by calling (281) 945-5190. Also, feel free to browse our website for information on our services and for online patient forms. Make all your stomach problems go away by making James Maher your Katy Texas Colon Doctor.
Katy TX Fun Facts
- Located in Harris County
- The city was once known as Cane Island
- It was incorporated in 1945
- Learn more about Katy here