Thanks for letting us know why you don’t want to have a colonoscopy.
Here are some of the reasons we hear, and the facts about those concerns.
- I have heard from friends and family that the preparation is not pleasant. As a matter of fact, it sounds awful.
Fact: This may have been true in the past…even if you remember doing the prep yourself more than ten years ago. Today’s prep is much easier. The new prep* is eight/8-ounce cups of fluid. This is half of the former prep. And, it’s flavored…so it tastes better.
- I don’t think my insurance will pay for it.
Fact: Most insurances pay for the screening when done as recommended by your doctor at five or ten-year intervals depending on whether polyps were found during your most recent screenings. Your first colonoscopy should be at age 50. When polyps are found and removed, the screening becomes a procedure. We do recommend that you check with your insurance on what payment you might be responsible for if something is found.
- I don’t have a family history of colon cancer.
Fact: Over 146,000 people in the United States develop colorectal cancer every year. Two of out three people diagnosed with this cancer have no family history but many lifestyle factors are associated with colorectal cancer. There are links to weight, diet, exercise, smoking and alcohol use. Additionally, type 2 diabetes increases the risk for developing colorectal cancer.
- If I have cancer, I don’t want to know.
Fact: Waiting until a colorectal cancer is in stage IV, only gives you a 5-year relative survival rate of 12%. However, if it’s caught in stage one, that survival rate goes up to 92%. This means that finding out early can save your life!
- I’m not having any problems, so I don’t think I need to have the screening.
Fact: Colon cancer can be developing for years without any symptoms. By the time symptoms such as bleeding, obstruction or anemia appear, the cancer will have advanced and be more difficult to treat.
- I wish there was something that could prevent cancer. Maybe I’d consider that.
Fact: Most colorectal cancers start as a small polyp. These polyps can be found and removed during a colonoscopy. This prevents the polyp from becoming cancer. This means that colonscopies can prevent colorectal cancer.
- I hate the thought of waiting for an appointment.
Fact: You won’t have to wait long. Call HFM Gastroenterology, (920) 320-3744 to set up your appointment. Typically, it can be in about two to three weeks. If you are over fifty or have a family history of colorectal cancer, take this important step today.
If you are over age 50, we hope you reconsider. You can learn more about HFM Gastroenterology and the great providers.
*Some kidney conditions may prevent patients from uses the new prep.