Urbana GI Endoscopy Center,LLC
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Get a better idea of how colonoscopies work

Endoscopy refers to a broad category of procedures in which different flexible fiberoptic tubes of varying lengths with a light at the end, (called endoscopes) are used to visualize the lining of the digestive tract.


When passed in through the mouth, it is used to evaluate the esophagus, stomach, and duodenum (esophagogastroduodenoscopy or EGD).


When the endoscope is passed in through the rectum, it is used to visualize the left colon (flexible sigmoidoscopy) or the entire colon (colonoscopy).


The endoscope permits a variety of therapeutic procedures to be performed through channels within the endoscopy, such as biopsy or removal of polyps.

For screening purposes, a close visual inspection of the colon is often performed upon withdrawal of the endoscope. Suspicious lesions (growths, inflammation or ulcers) may be cauterized, treated with laser light or cut with an electric wire for purposes of biopsy or complete removal (polypectomy). Medication can be injected, e.g. to control bleeding lesions. On average, the procedure takes 20–30 minutes, depending on the indication and findings. With multiple polypectomies or biopsies, procedure times may be longer. As mentioned above, anatomic considerations may also affect

procedure times.


An advantage of colonoscopy over x-ray imaging or other non-invasive tests, is the ability to perform therapeutic interventions during the procedure. A polyp is a growth of excess of tissue that can develop into cancer. If a polyp is found, for example, it can be removed by one of several techniques. A snare device can be placed around a polyp for removal. Even if the polyp is flat, it can often be removed by biopsy forceps.


Urbana GI Endoscopy Center, LLC utilizes the latest innovations in high definition endoscope technology. High definition scopes provide enhanced visualization

and clearer images resulting in greater accuracy in diagnosing disease

processes and retrieval of polyps and biopsy specimens.


According to a study published in the April 2009 issue of Gastrointestinal Endoscopy, and referenced in Outpatient Surgery, May, 2010, the results of the research revealed a 39.9% increase in total polyp detection with high-definition, and a 62.5% increase in adenoma (cancer) detection. This data was benchmarked using reference material published by the American

Society of Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (ASGE) and the American College of Gastroenterology (ACG).

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Regular screening: the absolute best protection against colorectal cancer

Colorectal cancer

According to the American College of Gastroenterology, colorectal cancer is the second most common cancer killer in the United States, causing an estimated 55,000 deaths each year. More than 138,000 new cases of colorectal cancer are diagnosed each year. Men and women are equally affected by this disease.


All colon cancers arise from polyps which

are abnormal growths on the wall of the colon. These polyps can become cancerous over time. If polyps are identified at an early stage, they can be removed before they become cancerous.


Complications of colorectal cancer can be reduced or even prevented with the simple step of regular screening. The screening program recommended by the American Cancer Society includes an annual fecal occult blood test and a screening flexible sigmoidoscopy every 3-5 years for all Americans over the age of 50. Those individuals with a high risk for colorectal cancer because of prior cancer, a family history of cancer, or a history of chronic digestive condition that predisposes them to cancer, should undergo regular surveillance known as colonoscopy.


Colonoscopy has become a primary routine screening test for people in the US who are over 50 years of age. Subsequent re-screenings are then scheduled based on the initial results found, with a five or ten year recall being common for colonoscopies that produce normal results. Patients with a family history of colon cancer are often first screened during their teenage years. Among people who have had an initial colonoscopy that found no polyps, the risk of developing colorectal cancer within five years is extremely low. Therefore, there is no need for those people to have another colonoscopy sooner than five years after the first screening.

Read about hemorrhoids and how they're treated

Hemorrhoids are blood vessels (veins) in

the anal canal. When those blood vessels become swollen or dilated, symptoms

may develop.


Hemorrhoids are often amenable to non-surgical management. At Urbana GI Endoscopy Center, we can perform IRC (Infra-red coagulation with a laser-like device), and banding.


An added advantage is that our physicians can perform hemorrhoid treatments during the colonoscopy while the patient is still sedated, thereby reducing discomfort and the need for more than one appointment.

Who is at risk for colorectal cancer?

•  Women are just as likely as men to develop

    colorectal cancer.

•  Colon cancer is most common after age 50,

   but chances of developing this disease

   increase after age 40.

•  Close relatives of a person who has had  

   colorectal cancer, or persons with one of

   several chronic digestive conditions have a

   higher than average risk of developing

   colorectal cancer.

What are symptoms of colorectal cancer?

•  Frequent gas pains

•  Blood in or on the stool

•  Diarrhea or constipation

•  A feeling that the bowel

   has not emptied completely

Before your procedure, learn about what an endoscopy is

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