Screen tests for colon cancer

--Visual examination of your rectal area (Look for visible signs of irritation or inflammation in that area)

-- Digital rectal exam. a doctor puts on the ol' rubber gloves, lubricates a finger, and sticks the finger right up there to feel for unusual things: swelling, the state of your "sphincter muscles," and for tenderness, which could be a sign of anla fissures or inflammation.)

--Anoscope exam ( a short lighted tube, similar but much shorter than a sigmoidoscope is inserted to look for signs of inflammation or polyp growth.)

--Occult blood test ( Also known as fecal occult blood test (FOBT), this test checks for "hidden" blood in the stools...Certain things in your diet, some medications, or the presence of hemorrhoids (and especially an inflamed anus, called anusitis) could give you false positive results).

--Sigmoidoscopy (a short tube with a lighted microscope on the end is inserted about 6 inches into your rectum. The lining of your colon can be examined this way, and any inflammation or polyps (growths that can be benign or malignant) can be seen.

--Colonoscopy (Prior to this test, you'll need to be "cleaned out" with laxatives and a liquid diet so that the field of vision is clear.)

M. Sara Rosenthal

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