Your old-school specialist who has invested his or her time and money in the old-school colonoscopy will disagree with this but:
In a study of people at average risk for colorectal cancer, a screening technique known as virtual colonoscopy was just as accurate as traditional colonoscopy at detecting potential signs of colon or rectal cancer, and was less invasive.
You can check that report at the National Cancer Institute, part of the U.S. National Institutes of Health.
Where do I get one?
That handled, how do you find a place to get a virtual colonoscopy?
Your primary care physician may be able to direct you.
If that doesn’t work, ask your primary care physician who he or she recommends for CT scans. And call them. If they do it, fine. If not, they probably know who does.
You can also run a Google search on virtual colonoscopy and add your state. For my state, I’d search virtual colonoscopy arizona.
Are you sure this is legit?
I don’t always think one expert opinion means everything, but let’s look at the respected Mayo Clinic.
For traditional colonoscopies they use Versed, which I think is a mistake, and even suggest it’s okay to use Versed with no other pain medication. That can probably be changed when necessary, especially if you insist.
And they also do Virtual Colonoscopy.
Here’s what I found at the Mayo Clinic website:
“Mayo Clinic was the first institution to report in the scientific literature on the clinical effectiveness of this technique, and the first to offer it for routine care. Physicians at Mayo Clinic in Rochester and Arizona have performed more than 4,000 CT colonographies, more than any other medical center.”
They use the Virtual Colonoscopy for “routine care.” If you look at their website, you’ll also see they quote the same study the National Cancer Institute quoted above.
I also found this interesting, and encouraging:
“If polyps are seen, a patient at Mayo can undergo a (standard) colonoscopy to remove the polyps the same day. This averts the need for another round of bowel preparation.”
Sounds like a sound, patient-centered approach to me, as long as the standard colonoscopy uses an anesthesiologist and Propofol.