Diagnostic Tests and Screening Tools
A few of the most common diagnostic and screening tests offered by Adena Gastroenterology include:
Colonoscopy. The good news about colon cancer is that it can be prevented. That’s because during a colonoscopy — the gold standard screening for colon cancer — a physician can find polyps and remove them. Polyps are growths on the colon that can develop into cancer if they are not removed. During a colonoscopy, your doctor gently inserts a thin, flexible, lighted tube inside the colon. A tiny video camera on the end of the tube transmits pictures to a TV screen.
The test usually takes about half an hour, and patients are typically asleep during it. For most people, colonoscopies are repeated every 10 years.
The American Cancer Society recommends that adults start colon cancer screening at age 50. However, if you have a history of colon cancer, a family history of colon cancer or other risk factors, your doctor might recommend more frequent screenings.
Upper endoscopy. This procedure uses a thin, flexible, lighted tube (an endoscope) equipped with a camera to let your doctor see the lining of the esophagus, the stomach and part of the small intestine.
Endoscopic ultrasound (EUS). This tool is helpful for studying diseases of the esophagus. Using an endoscope (see above) with an ultrasound transducer on the end, your doctor can get high-quality images of lesions on the esophagus. This allows your doctor to determine if a lesion is cancerous or benign and if can be removed using minimally invasive techniques.
Capsule Endoscopy. While an endoscopy is a great tool, doctors can only view part of the small intestine. To view the whole digestive tract, a capsule endoscopy is a helpful option. For this test, you’ll swallow a vitamin-sized capsule. The capsule contains a tiny wireless camera that takes thousands of pictures of your digestive tract and transmits those signals to a recorder that you wear.
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