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Who Needs a Colonoscopy?

Who Needs a Colonoscopy?

Colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer in the United States and the third-leading cause of death. A colonoscopy provides one of the most effective ways to screen for colon cancer and detect other issues, as well.

Board-certified surgeon Dr. Jacob Rinker has the expertise and experience to perform colonoscopies, helping patients at Wyoming Medical Associates advocate for their health. 

A colonoscopy can give Dr. Rinker an understanding of the root cause of certain health concerns that involve your colon. It can also help us correct and prevent problems in the future.

Why would I need a colonoscopy?

A colonoscopy identifies issues that can cause dangerous health problems. You may need a colonoscopy for:

Intestinal problems

Dr. Rinker can explore possible reasons for such problems as abdominal pain, chronic constipation, rectal bleeding, chronic diarrhea, and other intestinal concerns.

Colon cancer screening

We recommend that if you’re 50 or older, it’s time for you to have a colonoscopy to screen for cancer. After your first one, you should schedule another one every 10 years, or sooner if you have other risk factors.

Polyp removal

Polyps are small clumps of cells that form on the lining of your colon and that are usually harmless. But some polyps can develop into colon cancer. A colonoscopy can identify them, and Dr. Rinker can remove them. 

How a colonoscopy works

During the procedure, we sedate you so you don’t feel or remember anything. 

We have you lie on your side with your knees tucked toward your chest. Dr. Rinker then inserts a colonoscope into your rectum that has a tiny camera on the end of it, allowing him to see the entire length of your colon. It also pumps air into your colon to inflate it to give Dr. Rinker a better visual. 

If he sees polyps or abnormal tissue, he can use other instruments to remove them or take a biopsy. The procedure takes about 30-60 minutes.

It takes about an hour for your sedative to wear off. You should have someone drive you home while you rest the remainder of the day. 

You might feel bloated or need to pass gas for a few hours, and you might see small amounts of blood in your bowel movements after the exam. These symptoms are normal. Dr. Rinker might advise a temporary, special diet if he removed polyps during your procedure.

If you pass blood clots, have persistent pain in your abdomen, or have a fever, contact us right away.

To find out if you’re a candidate for a colonoscopy, call one of our friendly offices today. If a telehealth call works better for you, we can help set it up. Our offices are located in Gillette and Casper, Wyoming.

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