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Old 07-05-2020, 08:52 PM
Location: The Driftless Area, WI
4,729 posts, read 1,963,347 times
Reputation: 11273


Originally Posted by Arya Stark View Post
So it is time for me to get that scheduled for the first time.

I am hesitant to do it because my mother had a perforated intestine and I just cannot go through what she did. So I decided to look up the risks and they are shockingly bad. Only really being looked at in the last 5 years. The test itself turns out to save only about 2 of every 1000 people the procedure is done on. And about 7 out of 1000 have complications. (and the data they have only has medicare).

There are bleeding risks form getting rid of the polyps and all kinds of other risks.

Is there anyone else that has decided not to do it?
Time out. We have to question the veracity of your data.

Complications requiring hospitalization within 30 days of a colonoscopy occur in 3 of 1000 pts https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/art...with%20cautery.

Colonsocopy finds hyperplastic or adenomatous polyps in 1/3rd (!!)of pts https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1773751/

...and about 1 in 10 benign polyps will eventually turn cancerous.

Removal of a benign polyp essentially prevents cancer from forming, and if the polyp removed has early cancerous cells in it, the cancer is cured, for practical purposes.

The incidence of colon cancer is about 1 in 23 people, so routine screening by colonoscopy would "save" about 5 % of people.

Alternatives: stool for occult blood-- mostly good to scare pt into consenting for colonoscopy. Very low predictive value; many, many false negatives.

New "genetic" stool test-- like the idiot light on your car dashboard-- "Hey fool! You just ran out of oil!"

Colon cancer is essentially100% curable and easily curable if you find a polyp and remove it...If you wait until the tumor is obvious, then survival rates go down precipitously: chemo doesn't work very well; complications of radiation therapy are pretty common & nasty. Ostomy bag, anyone?...Colon obstruction has got to be one of the nastiest ways to go....

...all because people are somehow afraid to go thru routine colonoscopy-- often the same people who let a dentist without any medical training or back-up give them gas just to clean their teeth.
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Old 07-05-2020, 08:54 PM
1,712 posts, read 413,434 times
Reputation: 1464
Did it a while back at 50. Piece of cake except for the prep which is a major drag. Drink all of that cruddy stuff without stopping each time to clean you out which it will. I can get migraines if I don't eat but was luckily okay with the broth, gatorade, and jello (put extra gelatin in to fill you up). All was good on colonoscopy...report even said "excellent bowel prep"...next one needed in 10 years.
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Old 07-05-2020, 09:00 PM
Location: Huntsville Area
1,952 posts, read 711,908 times
Reputation: 2998
My wife had uterine cancer 13 years ago. She religiously has been getting colonoscopies every 5 years. Her doctor told her recently that no more will be required, however. Then the bill came in--$6800. Ouch!

I've also had a couple over the years. No problem. The worst part is getting the IV, as the rest is a big blur. Well, the preparation is no fun either--drinking a bottle of nasty stuff.
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Old 07-05-2020, 11:15 PM
1,934 posts, read 1,913,625 times
Reputation: 2968
My paternal family has issues with IBS, Crohns and colitis. I go every 2 years (I’m 43). My 45 year old cousin had a change in bowel habits 2 years ago. She kept putting off having one due to the prep. Well she finally did 2 weeks ago has stage 2 colon cancer.
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Old 07-05-2020, 11:36 PM
Location: Georgia, USA
30,146 posts, read 32,594,210 times
Reputation: 37200
Originally Posted by Arya Stark View Post
Well that is good. I am considering doing the Fecal DNA test.. which seems shockingly good.
If it is abnormal you still need the colonoscopy.

What you want is a GI doc who has done thousands of colonoscopies.
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Old 07-06-2020, 03:46 AM
Location: The Driftless Area, WI
4,729 posts, read 1,963,347 times
Reputation: 11273
Originally Posted by Bamaman1 View Post
Then the bill came in--$6800. Ouch!

I said on one of these CoV threads: in public health policy, it's the statistics for the whole population that count, not the individual....

...if a colonsocopy costs $6800, then 100 of them cost $680,000. Those tests would prevent/treat ~4 cases of colon ca. Colon surgery costs $30,000 and then follow-up chemotherapy another $50,000....total money saved by finding ca early ~$320,000 per 100 people. ...Suffering prevented-- priceless.

BTW- the prep shouldn't be that bad at all---a clear liquid diet for one day, a quart of mag citrate taken over a half hr or so (you don't have to chug it all at once) about 12 hrs before the procedure and again 4 hrs ahead of time https://health.clevelandclinic.org/f...half%20four%20 ....Make sure you have enough TP on hand and maybe a good magazine
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Old 07-06-2020, 04:11 AM
Location: Sacramento CA
1,484 posts, read 424,148 times
Reputation: 3302
I have had 3 procedures. I am convinced they will have saved my life at some point.

My 58 year old co-worker recently had 2-feet of his colon removed due to colon cancer. Who knows how long it will take for the cancer to come back and how soon he will die from it? He refused to get a colonoscopy prior to getting colon cancer.

I have not done any research on the risks of the procedure beyond reading the fact sheet I was given regarding risks, by the clinic I go to.

At this point, I am a lot more afraid of dying from colon cancer than I am from a punctured intestine or bleeding polyps. Maybe I should be, but the "C" word trumps most of my other fears.

I had no polyps last time and I have been heavily sprinkling ground flax seed on everything that I can tolerate, so there is that. It adds a light sweet taste to a lot of stuff. Some foods are sto strong I don't even notice it. Others are ruined by it, and I tend not to sprinkle it on that.

I put ground flax seed on cereal, over salad, in beans, in soup, on potatoes, in cole slaw, in canned tuna, over corn, oh I can go on and on. Supposed to help with fiber and Omega 3 and cholesterol. Who knows? I just know that with my last colonoscopy, I had no polyps or none big enough they could remove them, so better than the last 2 times.

Last edited by Igor Blevin; 07-06-2020 at 04:19 AM..
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Old 07-06-2020, 04:56 AM
325 posts, read 299,109 times
Reputation: 929
My husbands mother died of colon cancer when she was 48. Colon cancer is one of the few cancers that can be prevented if one gets a colonoscopy. I don’t play Russian roulette, so I have mine every 5 years.
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Old 07-06-2020, 07:00 AM
4,315 posts, read 1,885,132 times
Reputation: 11037
I was convinced that colonoscopies were just another revenue source. Then my gyno, bless her, handed me a fecal occult blood test when I was 51. It came back positive. I knew that wasn't a clear sign that anything was wrong but it was enough to send me for a colonoscopy where they found a tubular villiform adenoma (I forget the degree of dysplasia- probably mild). Well worth getting rid of that- who knows what it would be now, 16 years later? I've had 2 colonoscopies since, each with a few polyps that were of no concern but were removed.

I'm well aware of the potential for perforation- a HS classmate died from one- but colon cancer is preventable and an ugly way to die. I'm due again next year and will be there.
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Old 07-06-2020, 07:06 AM
Location: northern New England
3,799 posts, read 1,859,742 times
Reputation: 14491
I had one at 50, no problems. At 60 I did the Cologard test and flunked. Went in for another colonoscopy, no problems. The test gives a lot of false positive.

I had a snowbird acquaintance who died of colon cancer. Saw her in the fall when I got there, she was having problems. Dead of cancer by the end of the year. She never had a colonoscopy. I still remember the stricken look on her face when she said, "I'm not doing too well." Imagine not only dying of cancer but knowing you might have been able to treat if you had caught it in time.

If you are concerned about complications, find the best place to have it done. I had both of mine done in a major medical center/teaching hospital.
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