Hello, I’m Kristin Busch and I’m a colon and rectal surgeon here at MidMichigan Health and I want to talk to you today about colon cancer. Colon cancer is currently the third most common cause of cancer death for both men and women in the United States. But its also one of the more preventable and that’s because of colonoscopy There are lots of different tests that your
family doctor may have talked to you about to screen for colon cancer. There is different blood tests and stool tests to look for blood in the stool, but colonoscopy is really considered the gold standard. It looks at the colon at the inside for polyps so things that can turn into cancer overtime and can actually be removed that will prevent cancer from occurring. Um most people undergo screening colonoscopy starting at age fifty. That’s for people who are at average risk
with no family history but if you have a family history of colon or rectal cancer or other
diseases that may put you at higher risk you may need to undergo colonoscopy sooner so talk to your family doctor about this. Regarding colonoscopies for colon cancer screening, it’s a test that I do to look inside your colon for polyps that may overtime turn into cancer. There’s lots of important steps for a colonoscopy but one of the most dreaded steps is the bowel preparation. That’s where you have to drink a lot of liquid and medicine to make you go to the bathroom quite a lot of times in a short period of time. It’s not very pleasant but it’s really important and a lot of patients tell me after the colonoscopy that it wasn’t as bad as they thought it was going to be. On the day of the procedure you come in, you meet all the nurses and staff taking care of you in the room that day and then head
back to the procedure room for the colonoscopy. You get medicine that makes you nice and sleepy and very comfortable. A lot of people tell me afterwards that they don’t remember anything from the procedure. It’s a relatively short procedure, takes about 30 minutes to an hour at the most and afterwards when you wake up I come and talk to you to let you know what I found. You can eat or drink whatever you want after a colonoscopy and go home the same day with a ride. Most people feel back to normal that afternoon or first thing the next morning. It’s a pretty short period of time for you
to give up for a colon cancer screening especially when you look at having a diagnosis of colon cancer can be a much longer time commitment.