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Medical Services


What to Expect for a Colonoscopy

Find out “what to expect” during a colonoscopy at Barnes-Jewish West County Hospital. Knowing what to expect may help ease your nerves and help you better understand the procedure and the importance behind it.

To schedule an appointmentIf you’d like to schedule
a screening colonoscopy,
call 314-542 WEST (314-542-9378)
or 1-800-392-0936

What is a colonoscopy? 

A colonoscopy is a procedure that allows the physician to view the entire length of the large intestine (colon) and can often help identify abnormal growths, inflamed tissue, ulcers and bleeding. It involves inserting a colonoscope, a long flexible, lighted tube, in through the rectum up into the colon. The colonoscopy allows the physician to see the lining of the colon, remove tissue for further examination, and possibly treat some problems that are discovered.

People from all over the region depend on Barnes-Jewish West County Hospital for colonoscopy and other G.I. services. If you live in West St. Louis County, you can have your screening colonoscopy right in your neighborhood.

Risk Factors

  • 50 or older
  • History of colorectal cancer
  • History of colon polyps (adenomatous polpys)
  • History of Inflammatory Bowel Disease (Crohn’s Disease, ulcerative colitis)
  • Family history of colon cancer (familial adenomatous polyposis or hereditary non-polyposis colon cancer)

If you are over the age of 50, have a family history of colon cancer, have a personal history of polyps we recommend you get screened for colon cancer. Colonoscopy is considered the gold standard for colon and rectal cancer screening.

Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths after lung cancer. However, colon and rectal cancers are among the most preventable, treatable and curable.

If you’re 50 and your primary doctor hasn’t mentioned or recommended a screening colonoscopy, ask. A gastroenterologist (or G.I. specialist) performs colonoscopies.

If you'd like to schedule a screening colonoscopy, call Barnes-Jewish West County Hospital at 314-542-WEST (314-542-9378) or 1-800-392-0936.

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