Colonoscopy is a medical procedure used to diagnose and treat conditions of the large intestine. A long, flexible tube with a camera and light, called a colonoscope, is inserted into the rectum and through the colon to examine the lining of the intestine. It is a valuable tool used by gastroenterologists to diagnose and treat a range of conditions.
Foremost, colonoscopy serves as an indispensable diagnostic tool, illuminating the path to understanding symptoms associated with the large intestine. These symptoms encompass abdominal pain, chronic blood loss, persistent diarrhea, and rectal bleeding. Moreover, the procedure finds utility in conducting surveillance colonoscopies for individuals with a history of polyps, inflammatory bowel disease, or cancer. Throughout the examination, the skilled physician can extract tissue samples for biopsy, extract polyps, and diligently search for any irregularities that might be present.
In addition to diagnostic use, colonoscopy is also used therapeutically to treat various conditions of the large intestine. Some of the procedures performed using colonoscopy include:
Polypectomy: Polyps are small growths on the inner lining of the intestine that can become cancerous over time. Colonoscopy can be used to remove these polyps to reduce the risk of cancer.
Colonic dilatation: Colonic dilatation is used to treat strictures, or narrowings, in the colon that can cause obstruction. The doctor can use a balloon to gently stretch the narrowed area and restore normal function.
Hemostasis of ulcer bleed: Ulcers can cause bleeding in the colon, and colonoscopy can be used to stop the bleeding by applying various techniques like injection, clips or thermal treatment.
In summary, colonoscopy emerges as an invaluable procedure, both for diagnosis and therapy, enabling meticulous examination and treatment of conditions plaguing the large intestine. Its proven safety and efficacy render it an ideal choice for addressing concerns such as polyps, strictures, and ulcer bleeding. Should you experience any symptoms pertaining to the large intestine, it is imperative to consult your healthcare professional to determine whether colonoscopy is the optimal course of action. Regular follow-ups with a gastroenterologist are crucial to ensure comprehensive care and optimal management of your intestinal health. Embark on the path of intestinal enlightenment, harnessing the transformative capabilities of colonoscopy.
Dr. Sandeep Dhavan
MBBS,MD (Medicine), DM (Gastroenterology) (PGIMER-Chandigarh, India)
Gastroenterology & Hepatology