Colonoscopy and colon cancer screening

The first method is a stool test that checks your bowel movements for blood. The second method is a sigmoidoscopy exam, which looks at the lower part of your colon. The third option is a colonoscopy. It is similar to a sigmoidoscopy but with one important difference; the entire colon can be viewed.

Colonoscopy is the endoscopic examination of the large bowel and the distal part of the small bowel. It provides a visual diagnosis and grants the opportunity to find ulcers, colon polyps, tumors, and areas of inflammation or bleeding.

A colonoscopy can be used to:

  • Collect tissue samples
  • Take out abnormal growths
  • Screen test to check for cancer
  • Screen test to check for precancerous growths in the colon or rectum

Men and women 50 years old and older should have a colonoscopy every 10 years.