Alternative Colon Screening Methods

Air Contrast Barium Enema Radiography

In the air contrast barium enema radiographic procedure, contrast is instilled in the colon and x-rays are taken as a way to look for potential polyps. No sedation is used during this screening, and like a colonoscopy, bowel prep is required. If a polyp is found, the patient will need to be referred for a colonoscopy. 

CT Colonography

A CT colonography is a test where contrast is injected in the colon and images are taken of the inside of the colon and acts as a ‘virtual colonoscopy’. Like a colonoscopy, it requires the same preparation process. No sedation is used. If a polyp is discovered, the patient will need to be referred for a colonoscopy.

Fecal Immunochemical Test (FIT)

FIT is a test that is used to detect blood in the stool. If results are positive, scheduling a colonoscopy is necessary. Cologuard is a test that involves taking a stool sample at home and sending it off to a lab for testing. The lab will use special DNA technology to test for cells shed in the colon by cancers or polyps. This test requires a prescription from a physician and is covered by Medicare and most insurance companies for average risk individuals starting at the age of 50 and every 3 years thereafter.  To learn more about colon screening and colorectal cancer prevention, read Colorectal Cancer Q&A with Baptist Health gastroenterologist Dr. Paul Williams.

How to schedule your colon screening

Talk to your primary care provider and check with your insurance provider today about a colon screening. If you don’t have a primary care provider, Baptist Health can help. Call 1-888-BAPTIST (227-8478) today! 

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