About Cancer Screenings
Colon cancer is the second most common cause of cancer death in the United States, affecting individuals of all ages, backgrounds, and cultures. However, the disease is very preventable through early detection with a colorectal cancer screening known as a colonoscopy. The American Cancer Society recommends that most people begin regular cancer screenings by age 45 while people with a personal history of colon polyps or inflammatory bowel disease should have testing done sooner. The experienced medical team at Lawrence Family Practice Center performs colonoscopy procedures to help patients decrease their risk of colon cancer and catch any existing polyps. To learn more about cancer screenings, book an appointment at our facility in Lawrence, KS.
What Are the Benefits of Colon Cancer Screenings?
Screenings for colorectal cancers save lives, which makes them imperative for those aged 45 or older and those at increased risk of developing colon cancer. Benefits of colon cancer screenings with a colonoscopy at Lawrence Family Practice Center in Lawrence, KS include:
- Early detection of potentially cancerous tumors or polyps
- Removal and extensive analysis of abnormal growths or tumors
- Colonoscopies are statistically proven to save lives
- Recovery from a colonoscopy typically lasts no longer than a day
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Who should get colon cancer screenings?
Colon cancer screenings, or colonoscopies, are considered routine treatment every 10 years for individuals who are 45 years of age or older. You may be recommended to begin regular screening earlier in life if you have risk factors for colon cancer, such as Chrohn's disease, IBS, or genetic history. In addition, if you experience significant changes in bowel habits or unexplained intestinal pain, your doctor at Lawrence Family Practice Center may suggest a colonoscopy to ensure we catch anything early on.
What to Expect During a Cancer Screening
Prior to your colonoscopy, you will have an initial consultation with your physician in Lawrence, KS. The day before your procedure, you will need to follow a clear liquid diet and drink a prescribed fluid to empty your bowel, which will result in loose stools for the rest of the day. The colonoscopy procedure is performed while you are asleep under general anesthesia. A colonoscope (a flexible tube with a camera) will be applied to the rectum to view the inside of the colon. If your doctor discovers any polyps or abnormal growths in your colon, they will be removed during the procedure. Once you're fully awake, you'll be released to leave the facility, but you will need someone to drive you home. Most people are back to their normal activities by the next day.
Cancer Screening FAQs
Are there any risks with a colonoscopy?
This procedure is generally regarded as very safe and reliable. Of course, with any procedure that requires an anesthetic, caution should be taken. This small risk is an accepted part of the procedure and is well worth the benefits of a colonoscopy.
What should I do before my procedure?
Prior to a colon cancer screening, you will get a phone call with detailed instructions on what to do and what not to do before your procedure. In general, we advise avoiding solid food for up to a day before the exam. In addition, stick to only clear liquids, as dyes and colors can skew your results.
When will I get my results?
Your practitioner at Lawrence Family Practice Center will review the procedure with you as your sedation wears off. The actual results should be available in the weeks following your colonoscopy. Our office will contact you via phone or mail to let you know the results of your screening.
Lower Your Cancer Risk
If you're at least 45 years old, it may be time to schedule a colorectal cancer screening. The trusted physicians at Lawrence Family Practice Center are highly skilled in performing colonoscopy exams to prevent colon cancer. Our compassionate team can ease any worries you may have and will help you stay comfortable the entire time. Schedule a cancer screening consultation at our office in Lawrence, KS today.