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Seeing gastroenterologist and has been advised to undergo colonoscopy. Suggest alternative like CT Scan?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2009
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My wife is seeing a gastroenterologist and has been advised to undergo the colonoscopy procedure. I would just like a second opinion to understand if there are any alternatives to colonoscopy, something which is less invasive, with less chances of any side effects, like some kind of CT scan.
Posted Mon, 23 Sep 2013 in General Health
Answered by Dr. Yogesh D 26 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Colonoscopy is the gold standard

Detailed Answer:

Thanks for the query, I have gone through your complaints and understand the concern.

First I would like to tell you that, colonoscopy is the best diagnostic method available for certain conditions affecting the lower intestines as it gives an opportunity for taking a biopsy if an abnormality is found.

But, the decision to perform a colonoscopy is based on the exact complaints you have, so I would like to know why your doctor advised your wife to undergo colonoscopy, what were the complaints of your wife. Please do write back to me with details about what is going on with your wife and since how long.

I would also like you to answer few specific questions regarding your complaints,
1. Does your wife have bleeding while passing stools?
2. Does she get pain in the lower abdomen very often?
3. Why did you consult a gastroenterologist?
4. Has your wife lost weight significantly?

Please do write back with the answers so that I can suggest you the alternatives suitable in your case.

A high resolution CT scan can be of some use if the problem is outside the lumen of the intestines.

Capsule endoscopy is another alternative, and barium followthrough, or barium defecation studies will also be useful, but depending upon the nature of complaints.

MRI of the lower abdomen and pelvis is one more such alternative, but is not preferred generally due to low resolution.

Awaiting your response so that I can guide you better.

Dr. Yogesh. D
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