When Should I Get My First Colonoscopy Exam?


One of the most powerful ways of protecting against or diagnosing colorectal cancer as early as possible is having routine colon screenings. However, approximately half of adults who are eligible have not received an initial colonoscopy procedure. Per the American Cancer Society (ACS), those having an average risk of getting colon or rectal cancer should start having periodic colon and rectal screenings when they turn age 45.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), millions of adults throughout the country are not getting their colon and rectal cancer recommended screenings tests, diminishing the opportunity for early diagnosis. To determine whether you are eligible for your first colonoscopy test, reach out to the team at Colorado Gastroenterology and schedule an appointment. Our experienced GI doctors commonly provide colonoscopies for Denver, CO adults.

What should I know about having a colonoscopy screening?

A colonoscopy procedure is a type of colon cancer assessment that is performed using a thin, bendable scope with an attached camera. It is placed into the rectum and on into the colon by a Colorado Gastroenterology GI doctor to evaluate for polyps (growths) or other irregularities that may exist. If abnormal tissues or growths are found, they can be taken off at the time of the procedure for further testing. Patients receive a safe, quick-acting sedation medication prior to the colonoscopy that will enable them to remain relaxed and comfortable throughout the procedure.

What is recovery like after a colonoscopy screening?

When your initial colonoscopy procedure is finished and you awaken from the anesthesia, our Denver, CO gastrointestinal experts will explain any discoveries with you. If we do discover areas of concern that need further evaluation, our GI specialists will craft a treatment approach individualized for your health needs and condition. We advise that you have a family member or friend escort you home once your colonoscopy is complete. After all sensations of the sedative medication have passed, you should be able to resume your regular diet and usual daily activities within 24 hours. In some cases, individuals notice minor symptoms for a few days following the procedure, such as abdominal discomfort, excess gas, and bloating. Should you have extreme discomfort, fever, or bleeding, we urge you to seek immediate medical attention.

How regularly should I receive a colonoscopy?

Experts advise that adults with an average risk of getting colon or rectal cancer start screenings when they are 45. Periodic colon cancer evaluations should be received every ten years until a person reaches 75. Following age 75, every patient should talk with their GI specialist regarding the screening interval suited to their medical needs.

Why is it recommended to undergo regular colorectal screenings?

Whereas a colonoscopy procedure can detect early stages of colorectal cancer, the process can also help doctors diagnose possible reasons behind additional GI concerns, like chronic fluctuation in bowel movements (loose stools and/or constipation), anorectal/abdominal pain, anemia and bleeding, hemorrhoids, and abrupt or unexplained weight loss. The highly experienced GI doctors at Colorado Gastroenterology offer the latest in advanced technology and procedures to diagnose and address a myriad of diseases affecting digestive health and wellness.

How can I set up my first colonoscopy in Denver, CO?

Regular colon and rectal cancer screenings are the optimal method of catching this serious disease early. If you are 45 years old or older and have an average risk of colon cancer, we encourage you to arrange for your initial colonoscopy screening at Colorado Gastroenterology. Please reach out to our team today to schedule a colonoscopy consultation with one of our Denver, CO digestive health specialists.