I was off the news earlier this week for this, my colon. I had my second colonoscopy in five years, and I’m encouraging you to get this test if your doctor should recommend it.
Due to a history of colon cancer in my family, my doctor advised me to undergo the procedure, which for sure has its unpleasant aspects, but really wasn’t that bad. Nothing beats the feeling when it’s all over and the gastronenterologist tells your colon is spectacular and cancer free.
The day before you don’t eat, and you take some laxatives and magnesium citrate, although the menu of colon cleansers can vary from physician to physician. You let the products go to work in the privacy of your own home and you use your bathroom, a lot.
The next morning you go to the hospital where the colonoscopy is performed, you’re given an IV for a painkiller and a sedative. As crazy as it sounds, I asked for the minimum amount of sedative so I could get a tour of my innerds courtesy of a camera my doctor guided through my intestines. Most patients want to be completely put under, but I wanted to watch on the screen. I guess it’s the journalist in me. The whole colonoscopy lasts about twenty minutes.
You’re wheeled into recovery and I was given a muffin and something to drink to break that 24 plus hour fast.
I’ll admit, I was apprehensive as I was on the gurney waiting to go in. I thought of the people in my family who were diagnosed with colon cancer. I thought of the college friend I ran into not long along ago who is battling colon cancer, and the two classmates from my childhood who died of colon cancer this past summer. I also thought of Katie Couric who underwent a colonoscopy on live television, a groundbreaking event that raised awareness of colon cancer.
I got a clean bill of health but will still have to get another colonoscopy in a few years. Colon cancer is very curable if caught early, so ask your doctor if you are at risk.
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