FAQ #16 About Colon Cancer

March 18th, 2011 by mike Leave a reply »

Are colorectal screening tests done by your general practitioner or should they be done by gastroenterologists or other experts?

There are several types of colorectal cancer screening tests.

1. Fecal occult blood tests are usually provided by your general practitioner for you to take home with instructions for the test and how to return them to the laboratory for development.

2. Flexible sigmoidoscopy, which evaluates the lower 1/3 of the colon with an endoscope, is performed by some but not all general practitioners. General practitioners who do not perform flexible sigmoidoscopies in their office typically refer patients to a gastroenterologist of other specialist for the procedure.

3. Colonoscopy and virtual colonoscopy are a more extensive endoscopic evaluation of the entire length of the colon and is usually not done by general practitioners; it is done by gastroenterologists or other gastrointestinal specialists. The colonoscopy is considered the gold standard procedure for colon cancer screening by the American Cancer Society and many more professional organizations, and it is highly recommended that your general practitioner refer you to a Board Certified gastroenterologist or endoscopist to have the test done.

Source: PreventCancer.org

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