Digestive health is important to your overall health and well being. Expert gastroenterologists and medical staff at Summit Medical Group promote digestive health as well as diagnose and treat diseases of the digestive tract.
If you have concerns about your digestive health, ask your primary care physician which specialist might be right for you.
Every year, more than 130,000 people learn they have colorectal cancer, and more than 46,000 people die from colon-related cancers. Colon screening with a colonoscopy is one of the best ways to prevent colon cancer. You also can help protect yourself from some of the unwanted effects of colorectal cancer if it is detected early. Colorectal cancer is common enough that colonoscopy after age 50 is recommended as a routine screening procedure.
Colonoscopy is an outpatient procedure that allows your gastroenterologist to carefully examine your rectum and the inside of your colon to be sure it is healthy. When colorectal cancer is detected early, it can be treated effectively and it often can be cured.
During a colonoscopy, your doctor will insert a slim, flexible, lighted tube through your anus to examine the inside of your colon and rectum. If you have tissue that appears abnormal, your doctor will remove a small piece of it to test for cancer. The test is called a biopsy.
Another test you might have is a double-contrast barium enema. During the procedure, fluid that contains barium, a special element that allows the radiologist to see details in your tissues, is put into your colon. X-rays are then taken that show the inside of your colon. If the X-ray images show abnormal tissue such as polyps or cancer, you will need a colonoscopy to get a sample of the tissue for lab tests.
If your doctor finds cancer in your colon, you might have additional tests and scans to find out whether the cancer has spread to other parts of your body.
Live Well, Stay Well Tip
Starting at age 50, be sure to have a colonoscopy every 10 years. If you have had a colonoscopy and your physician found a polyp during the procedure, he or she is likely to recommend that you have a colonoscopy every 5 years.
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Our Gastroenterology Services
Common digestive health conditions we treat include:
- Acid reflux/heartburn
- Celiac disease
- Colon cancer
- Crohn’s disease/ulcerative colitis
- Intestinal parasites
- Irritable bowel syndrome
- Liver disease
- Stomach ulcers