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Old 10-09-2010, 11:44 AM   #81
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Not actually worried about it. This whole thing is just me getting some health checkups done since I am hoping to retire at the end of this school year. Dealing with both the NHS and private medical care is kind of funny here. I am having a slow growing bit removed from near my ear....doing that with the NHS since there is no hurry. This will happen "sometime in the next month or two" according to the letter. I just wanted this colonoscopy over fairly quickly once I decided to do it. Had the appointment/consult last week and just asked if I could have it Monday since it was a holiday/no school anyway. No problem. As long as you have your own insurance and are paying I can do it whenever. I'm only 53 with only some slight possible issue with that area of the body......the NHS wouldn't have done anything. I have no real arguments about that....the NHS is hurting for money(I do like the NHS by the way, they have done a good job for me over the years) as it is and I do have my own insurance so....... But not only do I get to have the colon check quickly....but they even make sure I have a newspaper (Indepenent or Daily Mail). Just had my last meal of eggs and toast....mmmmm.
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Old 10-09-2010, 12:16 PM   #82
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But I imagine you wouldn't want anyone to infer that it's okay to wait for a colonoscopy until symptoms appear, since colorectal cancer often has no symptoms at an early stage when it is easily curable.
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Old 10-09-2010, 09:02 PM   #83
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But I imagine you wouldn't want anyone to infer that it's okay to wait for a colonoscopy until symptoms appear, since colorectal cancer often has no symptoms at an early stage when it is easily curable.
The only 2 people I personally know who have actually been diagnosed with colorectal cancer were at work and, like me had colonoscopies through work. In both cases, what flagged the issue was the annual physical which includes a fecal blood test. They both had successful surgeries to remove part of the colon.

I've had 2 colonoscopies - at 40 and 50, through work. The first one was with me still conscious and I made the mistake of looking over my shoulder and saw the doc wrestling with what looked like a set of bagpipes.
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Old 10-09-2010, 09:23 PM   #84
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Have to pass on what a friend said after my flexible sigmoidoscopy 6 years ago: better flexible than rigid!
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Old 10-09-2010, 09:52 PM   #85
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In both cases, what flagged the issue was the annual physical which includes a fecal blood test
I was diagnosed with rectal cancer in 2005 by a colonoscopy. I did have symptoms, though it wasn't obvious at the time, since the blood in my stool was attributed to hemorrhoids. So, formally, my colonoscopy was for screening. After I was treated for rectal cancer, I became interested in CR cancer, and have read on line of a fair number of people who were diagnosed through a screening colonoscopy but who had no symptoms at all. It really happens, though not often (probably because not all that many people get screening colonoscopies starting at 50, even though that is the standard of care).

The fecal occult blood test is very useful, but it is not as good at detecting CR cancer as the colonoscopy.
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Old 10-09-2010, 10:01 PM   #86
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I was diagnosed with rectal cancer in 2005 by a colonoscopy. I did have symptoms, though it wasn't obvious at the time, since the blood in my stool was attributed to hemorrhoids. So, formally, my colonoscopy was for screening. After I was treated for rectal cancer, I became interested in CR cancer, and have read on line of a fair number of people who were diagnosed through a screening colonoscopy but who had no symptoms at all. It really happens, though not often (probably because not all that many people get screening colonoscopies starting at 50, even though that is the standard of care).

The fecal occult blood test is very useful, but it is not as good at detecting CR cancer as the colonoscopy.
As I said - I have had 2 colonoscopies - I'm a believer

My post was really to point out that a check-up every 10 years is not sufficient, and those annual fecal occult blood tests are just as important imo. (I believe that if no polyps are found then the frequency is every 10 years).
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Old 10-09-2010, 10:13 PM   #87
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(I believe that if no polyps are found then the frequency is every 10 years).
Perhaps. There may be some variation from place to place. I have heard the recommended frequency is every 5 years, unless you are in a higher risk category because, e.g., of having a relative who had CR cancer or having had a pre-cancerous polyp detected by a previous colonoscopy. Then it is generally every 3 years. I am in a high risk category.
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Old 10-09-2010, 10:22 PM   #88
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Perhaps. There may be some variation from place to place. I have heard the recommended frequency is every 5 years, unless you are in a higher risk category because, e.g., of having a relative who had CR cancer or having had a pre-cancerous polyp detected by a previous colonoscopy. Then it is generally every 3 years. I am in a high risk category.
I'm sure that you are correct. I have no family history and 2 negative examinations which I assume is why I was told to come back when I'm 60.
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Old 10-10-2010, 12:46 AM   #89
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... unless you are in a higher risk category because, e.g., of having a relative who had CR cancer or having had a pre-cancerous polyp detected by a previous colonoscopy. Then it is generally every 3 years.
Oh great.

I think I'll go have another bucket of yummy fiber.
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Old 10-10-2010, 02:51 AM   #90
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No need for pictures Rich. Having performed anoscopies / rectoscopies in the past (colonoscopies are not in my normal scope of practice), I can tell you that 99.9% look the same. The epithelial tissue is very similar in the mouth and rectum (and vagina too by the way). If you can visualize what the lining of your mouth looks / feels like, you know what your clinicians see in your lower GI tract.

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This thread is useless without pictures.
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Old 10-10-2010, 08:00 AM   #91
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I was diagnosed with rectal cancer in 2005 by a colonoscopy. I did have symptoms, though it wasn't obvious at the time, since the blood in my stool was attributed to hemorrhoids. So, formally, my colonoscopy was for screening. After I was treated for rectal cancer, I became interested in CR cancer, and have read on line of a fair number of people who were diagnosed through a screening colonoscopy but who had no symptoms at all. It really happens, though not often (probably because not all that many people get screening colonoscopies starting at 50, even though that is the standard of care).
That's what my mother had - thought it was hemorrhoids 'til the biopsy came back positive for cancer. Thus...I have colonoscopies more than I want.
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Old 10-10-2010, 08:21 AM   #92
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Finally braved up last year and got my first exam ( a couple years late).

I don't remember the actual procedure... whatever sedative they gave me put me out.

Drinking that liquid and purging the night before was the worst part that I remember.


Since I did not have any problems (and no family history)... The Doc said I should have the procedure again in 10 years.
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Old 10-10-2010, 09:44 AM   #93
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Yes, you'll need a designated driver, you'll be loopy when you get finished. As far as the prep, I had always heard about the awful crap you have to drink, but I was quite happy when my Dr. gave me a presecription for some pills, and also told me to pici up some Ducolax off the shelf to take. That combo did the trick, and it was much better than having to suck down the liquid plummer or whatever the heck that nasty stuff is. Worked like a charm! Relax...it'll be much easier than you expect. The worst part is of course, the prep, and also the anxiety leading up to it. Then...in a few minutes...it'll be over & you can get back to your life. Last thing...I'm not a proponent of military medical facilities or Drs. Just me...no offense to anybody. I'd reccommend a gastro-enterologist specialist in the civilian world. Best of luck to you!
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Old 10-10-2010, 11:31 AM   #94
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Hmmm, now I am sitting here wondering if I should give the hospital a call. After using the two sachets of Picolax today I am still not running clear like they want you to. Almost disappointed in a mentally sick way. After seeing all the talk about horrible, nasty, wanting to throw up etc on the stuff you drink..... tasted just fine and hasn't been any different than just using an Exlax (although quicker). Just hasn't seemed to really do all that much. Any idea exactly how clear things are supposed to be? Getting towards 6pm here. Guzzling water......
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Old 10-10-2010, 11:41 AM   #95
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Hmmm, now I am sitting here wondering if I should give the hospital a call. After using the two sachets of Picolax today I am still not running clear like they want you to. Almost disappointed in a mentally sick way. After seeing all the talk about horrible, nasty, wanting to throw up etc on the stuff you drink..... tasted just fine and hasn't been any different than just using an Exlax (although quicker). Just hasn't seemed to really do all that much. Any idea exactly how clear things are supposed to be? Getting towards 6pm here. Guzzling water......
I'd think that an answer is too graphic to post, but by now anyone reading this thread probably can handle it - besides F4mandolin sounds like he or she is a person in need of an answer right now.

Every colonoscopy I've had (read back on how many) I was not "clear" the night before. Light urine-colored instead. And passing nothing except fluids. I never heard anything the next morning about that not being enough.
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Old 10-10-2010, 11:45 AM   #96
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Hmmm, now I am sitting here wondering if I should give the hospital a call. After using the two sachets of Picolax today I am still not running clear like they want you to. Almost disappointed in a mentally sick way. After seeing all the talk about horrible, nasty, wanting to throw up etc on the stuff you drink..... tasted just fine and hasn't been any different than just using an Exlax (although quicker). Just hasn't seemed to really do all that much. Any idea exactly how clear things are supposed to be? Getting towards 6pm here. Guzzling water......
I would give them a call. On my 2nd colo I was not running clear and after the exam at 8am the Doc said he couldn't see the far end of the colon so he sent me home with more laxatives and a water enema kit and I came back at 3pm to have another colo.

So, although I said I have 2 colo's I have really had 3

The first one I had was also a big disappointment as afterwards the Doc said I had an exceptionally long colon so his instrument was too short, and he immediately sent me downstairs for a barium enema and scan to check the rest of the colon
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Old 10-10-2010, 11:57 AM   #97
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Any idea exactly how clear things are supposed to be?
No, I've never seen it discussed. But I never get beyond a brownish cloudy liquid, myself. Not completely clear.
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Old 10-10-2010, 12:00 PM   #98
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TMI.....
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Old 10-10-2010, 12:14 PM   #99
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Reaching for new heights here, be aware that "clear" means you can see through it, like a glass of water. Clear fluid can have color (koolaid, 7-up) or it can lack color - it's clear regardless. Opaque (milk), mixed with solids (muddy water), or cloudy imply "not clear."

I gotta go watch some baseball or something...
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Old 10-10-2010, 12:19 PM   #100
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Reaching for new heights here, be aware that "clear" means you can see through it, like a glass of water. Clear fluid can have color (koolaid, 7-up) or it can lack color - it's clear regardless. Opaque (milk), mixed with solids (muddy water), or cloudy imply "not clear."

I gotta go watch some baseball or something...
So there you have it F4, a clear definition

Next time you skip to the loo, collect some in a glass and hold it up to the light.
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