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Bowel Scoping!

(21 Posts)
rosinavera Sat 03-Aug-19 18:36:10

I've just had an appointment to have this procedure done and I wondered whether anybody can tell me whether this is a routine thing now when you're 55 to be called up for this procedure or could it be because I've had cancer (but not of the bowel) and they're checking me out?

Also for those of you who've had it done (and please be honest) - is it horrendous? :-(

OP’s posts: |
Mintjulia Sat 03-Aug-19 18:52:38

I was invited along at the same age. I’m healthy, but they’re trying to test everyone at that age I think. I was definitely a bit scared but it wasn’t too bad.

More uncomfortable than a smear but not painful. It helped that I had a lovely all-female team who made me laugh and relax.

PestoCaffeinisto Sat 03-Aug-19 18:55:25

It’s a routine procedure to be offered when you reach 55. It takes 10 mins & a little bit of discomfort. But worth it for the peace of mind.

rosinavera Sat 03-Aug-19 18:56:30

Thank you Mintjulia for replying! Can I ask if you were offered pain relief - I have to confess to being a bit of a wimp! :-0

OP’s posts: |
Scoleah Sat 03-Aug-19 18:58:47

I read the Title as Bowel Scooping! blush

rosinavera Sat 03-Aug-19 19:02:39

@Scoleah Ha ha!! :-) It doesn't sound nice either spelling does it?! :-0

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Mintjulia Sat 03-Aug-19 19:04:28

No, I wasn’t offered pain relief.

I rang them up and asked if it was a female doctor because I knew I wouldn’t have been able to relax with a man there.

They seemed to think this was an odd question hmm but they managed to find me an all-female day and I psyched myself up and went.

Gatekeeper Sat 03-Aug-19 19:04:51

I was invited too-it's a standard thing nowadays for everyone 55 and over. I was given a gown and some crotchless disposable shorts to wear and sat in the waiting room with my clothes in a shopping basket! I sat next to a bloke and we were chatting about how nervous we were when a nurse came along and seperated us into male and female waiting areas which i though odd.

When I went to the procedure room I was scared stiff and was a bit teary but the team ( four of them) tried to reassure me. The nurse doing the actual screening did an internal first and then put the thingy up that inflates the bowel with gas. I won't lie...I found it painful like horrible cramps and shouted out a few times. Bloody relieved when she said 'nearly finished'. Team congratulated me on having' a lovely clean bowel' grin and I got a nice photo of it to incorporate in this years Christmas card. The actual procedure only took five mins and although it wasn't nice I would recommend people having it done

Egghead68 Sat 03-Aug-19 19:11:40

Sigmoidoscopy? I don’t think they routinely offer any pain relief or sedation. It shouldn’t be too uncomfortable though because they don’t go very far up the colon.

tryingtobebetterallthetime Sat 03-Aug-19 19:14:50

Are you booked for a colonoscopy or a flexible sigmoidoscopy? I am asking because they are quite different in the need for sedation etc.

I have had both a number of times because I have ulcerative colitis. Had a flex sig a month ago and it was only a teeny bit uncomfortable and I did not have any sedation. It was also very quick and I walked out on my own. The prep was just a Fleet enema.

A colonoscopy goes further up. You have to prepare by fasting and drinking a strong laxative solution that will empty your colon. I have always had sedation through an IV. I have been more uncomfortable during a colonoscopy, but those times were when I had a flare up of my ulcerative colitis. Most people find they are fine. I have had to wait in a recovery area being monitored by nurses for 1/2 hour afterwards, the been given a snack of juice and cookies. You can't take yourself home and someone must collect you.

It is well worth it to get screened. They can remove polyps that might develop into colon cancer. Neither procedure is what anyone would call fun, but again, it is worth it.

All the best.

tryingtobebetterallthetime Sat 03-Aug-19 19:17:50

The last two scopes I had they did not use air to inflate the colon so it was less uncomfortable afterwards having to pass the gas. I think they use something else that just gets absorbed.

rosinavera Sat 03-Aug-19 19:48:24

@tryingtobebetterallthetime - it's for a flexible sigmoidoscopy. I've just read the leaflet again and it says they can give you gas and air if it's too uncomfortable! :-0

OP’s posts: |
rosinavera Sat 03-Aug-19 19:52:10

@Mintjulia Might follow your lead and ask for a female team too!! :-0

OP’s posts: |
tryingtobebetterallthetime Sat 03-Aug-19 20:25:36

I was a bit nervous about sedation for the sigmoidoscopy so they put in the iv. But in the end the doctor told me it would be quick so I said go ahead without. I am in Canada and have never been offered gas and air. I think it is only used here for childbirth but I am not sure. It is good that it will be available for you.

Try not to worry. I know that is hard as I always do but once it is over I wonder why I was so worried!

rosinavera Sat 03-Aug-19 20:29:30

@tryingtobebetterallthetime Thank you so much x

OP’s posts: |
MinesaPinot Sun 04-Aug-19 20:03:45

I had it last year. It is something that they offer now once you hit 55. I have acute health anxiety and I managed to get myself very anxious and teary. I have to say I found it quite uncomfortable but the whole team were lovely. Luckily DH came with me, and the nurse took him round so that he was there when I came out (and could have a few tears on his shoulder!). There were a couple of tiny polyps which they dealt with, and a diverticular pocket which they found which explains why I feel that I get trapped wind in my lower left bowel every so often. DH and I went out on the way home and I felt much better after that!

rosinavera Sun 04-Aug-19 20:59:03

@MinesaPinot Thank you for answering and everybody else that I haven't mentioned too. I was thinking of going on my own but I think perhaps it might be a good idea to take my husband with me as a few of you have felt teary afterwards x

OP’s posts: |
SirTobyBelch Mon 05-Aug-19 00:00:59

Yes, it's routine. I've got mine next Monday. I was supposed to have it done in March but turned out to have excessively high blood pressure and had to have it postponed until that was sorted out.

TapasForTwo Mon 05-Aug-19 00:05:06

I have never heard of this. I am 60 and it isn't offered round here. We just do the poo test from 60. Do all other health authorities offer it?

SirTobyBelch Mon 05-Aug-19 00:16:32

It's being rolled out across the country. It's not offered everywhere yet: www.nhs.uk/conditions/bowel-cancer-screening/bowel-scope-screening

TapasForTwo Mon 05-Aug-19 05:16:09

I won't get called for one then as I am 60.

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