Colorectal Cancer Screening (colonoscopy)
Unlike many cancers, colon cancer is preventable. A colon cancer screening can help decrease your risk for colon cancer. Colon cancer starts from little growths called polyps that develop on the lining of the colon or rectum. Over time, some of these polyps can become cancerous. Several screening tests can be used to find polyps and detect cancer, such as a colonoscopy or a Fecal Immunochemical Test (FIT). Talk to your doctor about which test is right for you.
The American Cancer Society and the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recently revised their guidelines to begin colorectal cancer screening at age 45. Contact your health insurance provider to learn about coverage information for colorectal cancer screening. Learn more about screening and risk reduction.
Early Detection Saves Lives
Colorectal cancer can often be prevented with regular screenings. Separating the facts from fiction can help protect your health. Learn more about myths and misconceptions.
For your convenience, we offer locations for a colonoscopy screening across the Portland metro area, including at Providence Portland Medical Center on Portland’s east side.
A colonoscopy is an outpatient procedure and usually takes less than 30 minutes to perform. With a colonoscopy, your doctor can carefully evaluate sensitive conditions like ulcers, polyps, cancer, or other colorectal issues such as inflammation and infections. The detailed images created by the colonoscope also allow for accurate diagnoses of colon cancer and help determine next steps for cancer treatment. If no polyps are found, this test only needs to be done about once every 10 years.
You will be given medications to help you relax during the colonoscopy so it won’t be safe for you to drive home after your procedure. Please make arrangements to have a driver accompany you to your colonoscopy appointment.
Because colonoscopies require entry into the gastrointestinal tract, your doctor will also ask that you prepare your bowels before the procedure. This preparation may take place up to three days before your colonoscopy and will require you to alter your diet and take medication that is designed to cleanse your colon. Learn more about what to expect.
To schedule a colonoscopy, call 844-972-1299 or complete the form to request an appointment.
Other Colon Cancer Screening Options
In addition to colonoscopy, several non-invasive screening options are available, such as the fecal immunochemical test (FIT), which you can perform at home. The FIT tests (including Cologuard) detect hidden blood in the stool and use DNA to detect cancer cells. These tests require you to collect samples of your stool. If results are negative, your doctor will probably recommend you repeat the test one to two times a year.
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At Providence, you'll have access to a vast network of dedicated and compassionate providers who offer personalized care by focusing on treatment, prevention and health education.