Colonoscopy services offered in Midlothian, N. Chesterfield, Short Pump, Henrico, Richmond and Mechanicsville, VA

A colonoscopy is an endoscopic procedure that allows your gastroenterologist to evaluate the lining of your large intestine and is the standard test for colorectal cancer screening. The team at Richmond Gastroenterology Associates, with eight offices in Richmond, Chesterfield, Henrico, and Mechanicsville, Virginia, includes gastroenterologists who specialize in performing colonoscopy procedures. To schedule your colonoscopy, call the office or schedule an appointment online today.

Colonoscopy Q & A

What is a colonoscopy?

A colonoscopy is a diagnostic test that enables your gastroenterologist to look at the lining of your colon, or large intestine. For the test, your gastroenterologist uses an endoscope, a thin, flexible tube with a light and camera.

Your doctor inserts the endoscope in your anus and advances it through your rectum and then the entire length of your large intestine, looking for abnormal tissue or growths. 

Richmond Gastroenterology Associates is a state-of-the-art practice that performs colonoscopy procedures to diagnose and treat gastrointestinal (GI) conditions.

Why would I need a colonoscopy?

Your gastroenterologist explains why you need a colonoscopy at your consultation. They may recommend the diagnostic test to find the underlying cause of your abdominal pain, rectal bleeding, or change in bowel habits. 

The colonoscopy helps them diagnose GI conditions like:

  • Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
  • Diverticulosis
  • Diverticulitis
  • Colon cancer
  • Colon polyps

The team also performs a colonoscopy for colorectal cancer screening. It’s the gold standard test for colorectal cancer.

Finding colon cancer during the early stages improves your chances of a full recovery. 

During a colorectal cancer screening, the team looks for colon polyps and other abnormalities. Colon polyps are benign growths that may turn cancerous when left untreated. Your gastroenterologist removes any polyps when performing a colonoscopy, potentially preventing colon cancer.

What do I do to prepare for a colonoscopy?

The Richmond Gastroenterology Associates team provides specific guidelines on the steps you need to take to prepare for your colonoscopy. 

Called bowel prep, it’s important that you follow the instructions precisely so your bowel is clear of stool and debris, improving visibility. Bowel prep may include diet modifications before your colonoscopy and a laxative that clears out the large intestine.

What happens during a colonoscopy?

The team at Richmond Gastroenterology Associates administers an anesthetic before you start your colonoscopy to minimize pain and anxiety. For the procedure, they insert the endoscope into your anus and slowly advance it through your large intestine.

The endoscope transmits images of the lining of your large intestine onto a computer screen. The entire test takes 30-60 minutes. 

After your procedure, you go to the recovery room. Your gastroenterologist talks to you about your colonoscopy and their findings. They may schedule follow-up appointments based on what they found during the test.

You must have someone drive you home after your colonoscopy and plan on taking it easy the remainder of the day.

To find out more about the colonoscopy at Richmond Gastroenterology Associates, call the office or schedule a consultation online today.