Frequently Asked Questions About Colonoscopy
Getting a colonoscopy does require some planning and preparation. Before the colonoscopy, you must drink the liquid prep and allow sufficient time for your bowels to empty. This means you will need to make frequent trips to the bathroom, which may limit your normal activities or prevent you from leaving home. You may need an entire day or a few hours in the evening to complete the prep. After the colonoscopy, you won’t be able to drive or work, and probably shouldn’t plan on making any major decisions the day of the procedure. Some people need a second recovery day.
There is typically a wait from when you schedule a colonoscopy to when you can be seen for the procedure. While it is unfortunate that there is a wait time for this very important screening test, it is not a test that must be done immediately. This also allows you time to plan ahead.
Occasionally, Saturday hours are available for colonoscopy appointments. Make sure to ask about planning and preparation when you call to schedule your appointment. Click here to learn more about local resources in Buffalo or Hastings.
Some medications like blood thinners should be stopped before the procedure. Tell your doctor about the medications you are taking.
The doctor can tell you at the end of your appointment if they found or removed any polyps. Having polyps does not mean you have cancer. Any sample tissues or polyps taken from your colon during the colonoscopy will be sent to a lab for testing. You should get results within a week of your procedure. Make sure to ask how the doctor will follow up with you and how long it should take for your results. When you get results, make sure to ask about your follow-up plan.
If you are diabetic and have decided to have a colonoscopy, there are some special considerations that need to be considered before doing the “prep”. It is important to talk to the healthcare provider who manages your diabetes before doing the preparation for a colonoscopy. It is suggested that diabetic patients request an early morning appointment so that they can resume a normal diet as soon as possible.
Colorectal cancer screening is covered by most insurance plans and Medicare. Check with your insurance provider or Medicare (1-800-MEDICARE) to find out which tests are covered for you.