MUHC Dr. B Stein, Dr. S Liberman (514) 934-8486 Dr. V Baffis, Dr. G Wild, Dr. P Szego (514) 934-1934. THE JEWISH Dr. A Cohen, Dr. J Wyse, Dr. P Galiatsatos (514) 340-8222. MEDIC ELLE Dr. J Nawar, Dr. C Mueller. (514) 788-2888. CITE DE LA SANTE Dr. D Farber (450) 668‑1010.

TO CONTACT YOUR PHYSICIAN MUHC Dr. Barry Stein, Dr. Sender Liberman (514) 934-8486, Dr. Vicky Baffin, Dr. Gary Wild, Dr. Peter Szego (514) 934-1934 Jewish General Hospital (514) 340-8222 Dr. Albert Cohen, Dr. Jonathan Wyse, Dr. Polymnia Galiatsatos CITE DE LA SANTE (450) 668‑1010 Dr. David Farber MEDIC ELLE (514) 788-2888 Dr. Josiane Nawar, Dr. Carmen Mueller., MONTREAL

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Frequently Asked Questions

WHERE CAN I LOCATE MY PHYSICIAN
What is a colonoscopy?
How is a colonoscopy performed?
What is a polyp?
What happens after the colonoscopy is performed?
Why is a colonoscopy performed?
What are the risks of a colonoscopy?
What is required to prepare for a colonoscopy?
To empty your colon, your physician may ask you to:
The day of the appointment you will need:
What is a virtual colonoscopy?
How is a virtual colonoscopy performed?
Why is a virtual colonoscopy performed?
What are the risks of a virtual colonoscopy?
Is the preparation for a virtual colonoscopy any different from a traditional colonoscopy?

 

Colonoscopy

Virtual Colonoscopy

How is it performed?

Tiny camera on a flexible tube passes through the anus examining the entire length of the colon

Uses computer software to generate internal, 3D images of the bowel, allowing the physician to move through the colon with the click of a mouse.

What are the risks?

  • Adverse reaction to sedative.
  • Bleeding from the area where a tissue sample, polyp or abnormal was removed.
  • Very small risk of a tear (perforation) in colon or rectum (0.35% as per the Colorectal Cancer Association of Canada).
  • A small risk that an existing or developing cancer lesion may be missed. 
  • Very small risk of a tear (perforation) in the colon or rectum wall (due to the colon and rectum being inflated with air or carbon dioxide).
  • Adverse reaction to the contrast agent sometimes used can occur.
  • Radiation used during a virtual colonoscopy is unlikely to be dangerous, but the effect of cumulative radiation exposure after repeated exams is unknown.
  • A small risk that an existing or developing cancer lesion may be missed. 

What is involved in the preparation?

  • Follow a special diet the day before the exam.
  • Take laxative.
  • Use enema kit.
  • Adjust medication.
  • Follow a special diet the day before the exam.
  • Take laxative.
  • Use enema kit.
  • Adjust medication.
  • Take medication to identify stool in your colon.

Advantages

  • One of the most sensitive tests currently available.
  • Physicians can detect and immediately remove polyps or other abnormal tissue.
  • Less invasive than traditional colonoscopy.
  • No sedation required.

 

Disadvantage

  • Test may not detect all small polyps, nonpolypoid lesions (flat and depressed abnormal pieces of tissue), or cancers, but it is one of the most sensitive tests currently available.
  • Thorough cleansing of colon is necessary.
  • Typically some form of sedation is used which requires someone to accompany the patient in order to drive them home.
  • Uncommonly sedation or instrument complications can occur.
  • Test may not detect all small polyps, non-polypoid lesions (flat and depressed abnormal pieces of tissue), or cancers.
  • If a polyp or other abnormal tissue is detected, a traditional colonoscopy will be required to remove or biopsy the tissue.
  • Thorough cleansing of colon is necessary.
  • Exposes patient to a low dose of radiation (more than a chest x-ray but less than a conventional CT scan).
  • Since no sedation is required patients may feel discomfort when air is pumped into the colon.