Frequency of colonoscopies?

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mbw1103
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 71
   Posted 4/23/2009 9:07 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi,
 
I'm curious as to how frequently others get colonoscopies.  I just found out today that I need my fifth colonoscopy since my Crohn's diagnosis 4.5 years ago.  My last one was in late August, the next will be in early May, so only about 8 months in between.  On a couple of occasions, my doctor has said that she was going to try to wait 2 years between repeating the colonoscopy, so I know that her preference is to space them further apart.  It's just that my body doesn't want to conform to her plans.  Each one seems warranted, but it's still frustrating to need them so often.  It's not even the prep and test that I mind; it's the concrete reminder that things aren't going so great and the need to impose on someone to take the time off of work to take me.  On the plus side, I can usually look forward to feeling better for a few days after the colonoscopy! :-)
 
Thank in advance,
Melissa

Kittikatt
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2004
Total Posts : 422
   Posted 4/24/2009 5:33 AM (GMT -7)   

My GI told me upfront he'd want to do one every 2-3 years, depending on how I was doing.

Had my first one in 2004 (which was how I got diagnosed) and had my 2nd one in 2007.  I was thinking he would do one this year but he hasn't mentioned it yet and I've been sicker than I've ever been the past year!  So who knows.  I have an appointment with him in June...maybe he'll mention it then.

The prep is awful, isn't it???  But I always think that a colonoscopy is really the ONLY true way to see what the heck is going on up in there when your bowels are on the fritz. shocked


Diagnosed in October, 2004 at age 32.
37/F/SC
Current Rx's: Colazal (generic), Omeprazole, Ferrous Sulfate, Librax, One-A-Day multivitamin, Probiotic, Omega-3 Fish Oil, Vitamin D, Vitamin A, Calcium-Magnesium-Zinc, Cranberry pills
Secondary conditions: mouth ulcers, joint pain, swelling ankles, extreme fatigue
Previous/occasional Rx's: 20mg Prednisone taper, Flagyl, Levaquin
No surgeries to date


MikeB
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 1169
   Posted 4/24/2009 5:44 AM (GMT -7)   
It's really as needed. Some GIS like a more frequent look to track inflammation, possible strictures, etc. Mostly it depends on symptoms and disease course. More severe disease seems to require more frequent scopes. And the standard of practice is that after 18 years of continuous disease, a scope is needed every 2-3 years for cancer screening.

mbw1103
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 71
   Posted 4/24/2009 6:48 PM (GMT -7)   
Thanks KittiKat and Mike. I guess i'm just among the lucky few who need a more frequent scope, but there's some reassurance knowing that there truly is hope of the 2 year break between scopes :-).

KittiKat - it all depends on the prep. I can't recall which method i used for my first scope, but it was awful in every aspect (both going in and out). By the second one, I switched to the miralax prep, which i find much more tolerable. I've also come to the conclusion A&D (or the like) and flushable wipes are a necessity, not optional as listed :-). I'm not to the point where I would say the prep is a breeze, but it's definitely tolerable.

Melissa

dt19&99
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 174
   Posted 4/24/2009 8:33 PM (GMT -7)   
I've had two... One in 2002 (the one that led to the initial diagnosis) and one two weeks ago (I hadn't been to a doctor in years so the new doc wanted to check it out for himself) and he hasn't mentioned anytihng about another... I hope it'll stay that way. The procedure itself wasn't bad because they knocked me out both times and I woke up feeling nice, the prep however I though was terrible. I don't remember what I did the first time around but this time they prescribed this halflytely stuff which was just awful (not to mention you had to drink like 2 liters of the crap). My dad had one a few months ago (the normal 50 year old checkup) and he only had to drink a small bottle of stuff for the prep, which sounded much more pleasant.

onthecan
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 318
   Posted 4/24/2009 9:52 PM (GMT -7)   
hi mbw the rule of thumb down here is if there is any sign of a stricture or narrowing or repeated bowel obstructions than a scope is needed i get one once a year for sure i get mine May,27th in the city i don't know the rule why they do them more often than some people get them but there always looking for something maybe polups could be i also had a stint put in at my last scope that was only 4 months ago but i was so sore she couldn't finish it so that is why the repeat. So good luck to you i know they are not very nice but they could possiable save your life. Your Frien Jenn yeah
Had Crohns 17 years had numerous bowel resections,fistulas,fissures,hemmies,kidney problems,fibro,arthritis,dignosed at 13 had GI feeding tube,nasal feeding tube,cental lines,ports,4 ruptured bowel emergency surgeries,TMJ,depression,current meds are Hydromorphone,30 ,Hydromophome,8 ,Ketoprofen,100 ,Trazadone,50 ,Lorazepam,10 ,Zopliclone,5 ,atriplyine,75 ,Losac,50 Tylenol Athritis ,B-12 injections ,Iron injections ,Gravol,75 Predisone,5mg ,Humira,40mg once a week.Still looking for the doctor with all the answers if you find him forward him to me please.P.S my bathroom is the nicest room in my house cause i spend so much time there,i am thinking about installing the computer and maybe a hot-dog stand.


mbw1103
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 71
   Posted 4/24/2009 10:09 PM (GMT -7)   
DT - from what i've heard the golytly and halflytly are among the most brutal of the preps. i'd love to only need to drink a tiny bit, but i'd be nervous about not being cleaned out enough. After going through the prep, the last thing i'd want to hear is that they couldn't do the scope.

Jenn - Thanks for letting me know that i'm not the only one in the frequent scope club. I agree, if the doctor says she wants to do it, i'll follow her orders. This one is to see if there's enough current disease to warrant trying Humira. After what we thought was a failed response to remicade a few years ago, a scope and pill endoscopy proved the crohn's was in remission - it turns out i had ibs in addition. My usual course of meds hasn't brought my current flare under control. Before she prescribes something stronger she wants to make sure it is crohn's and not ibs. Good luck with your scope - i hope it goes more smoothly this time.

Melissa

onthecan
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 318
   Posted 4/25/2009 8:37 AM (GMT -7)   
mbw1103 said...
DT - from what i've heard the golytly and halflytly are among the most brutal of the preps. i'd love to only need to drink a tiny bit, but i'd be nervous about not being cleaned out enough. After going through the prep, the last thing i'd want to hear is that they couldn't do the scope.

Jenn - Thanks for letting me know that i'm not the only one in the frequent scope club. I agree, if the doctor says she wants to do it, i'll follow her orders. This one is to see if there's enough current disease to warrant trying Humira. After what we thought was a failed response to remicade a few years ago, a scope and pill endoscopy proved the crohn's was in remission - it turns out i had ibs in addition. My usual course of meds hasn't brought my current flare under control. Before she prescribes something stronger she wants to make sure it is crohn's and not ibs. Good luck with your scope - i hope it goes more smoothly this time.

Melissa
smilewinkgrin Hi Melissa the bowel preps are the worst but please finish all your yummy drink cause you don't want to go through all that (D) for nothing trust me i tried it only once didn't drink near enough but i was ahving a flare up at the time so i thought it wouldn't matter it did she started my scope only to tell me that i wasn't cleaned out enough so they couldn't finish the test and i would have to go back again so i never did that again you would think with all the (D) we have we wouldn't have to do the bowel prep but i guess so. I'm on Humira now and tried Remicade and Methotrxate with no luck but the Humira seems to be doing its job so far so good it doesn't work miracles or nothing it took about 2 months before i noticed anything but now i'm finally seeing some differance the doctors have been tring everything to get me into remission also but my body just wouldn't respond hopefully the Humira works for you as well good luck with your scope. Jenn yeah
Had Crohns 17 years had numerous bowel resections,fistulas,fissures,hemmies,kidney problems,fibro,arthritis,dignosed at 13 had GI feeding tube,nasal feeding tube,cental lines,ports,4 ruptured bowel emergency surgeries,TMJ,depression,current meds are Hydromorphone,30 ,Hydromophome,8 ,Ketoprofen,100 ,Trazadone,50 ,Lorazepam,10 ,Zopliclone,5 ,atriplyine,75 ,Losac,50 Tylenol Athritis ,B-12 injections ,Iron injections ,Gravol,75 Predisone,5mg ,Humira,40mg once a week.Still looking for the doctor with all the answers if you find him forward him to me please.P.S my bathroom is the nicest room in my house cause i spend so much time there,i am thinking about installing the computer and maybe a hot-dog stand.


HM
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 211
   Posted 4/25/2009 9:06 AM (GMT -7)   
My GI has told me he is going to try to only do one every three years.  He said that is to check progress and for colon cancers.
 
That being said, my first GI who retired a few mos after he diagnosed me told me that he thought he would repeat it at 6mos -a year if he was going to be there.  He said he didn't know what his replacment would do for sure.
 
 

35/f   proud single mom of 2

Diagnosed with GERD/Acid Reflex 2002

Diagnosed with IBS 2007

Diagnosed with UC, then Crohn’s 2008

Current medications: Endcort 3mg 2X daily, Pentasa 2 500mg caps 2X daily, Prilosec 20 mg 2X daily (if needed), Probiotics, Calcuim/Mag/Vit.D. Flinstones multi with Iron and Vit. C 500mg daily


aoccc
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2005
Total Posts : 455
   Posted 4/25/2009 9:14 AM (GMT -7)   
waits for my very own do it yourself at home kit
SCD since 01, remission since 01, occasional Arby's breaks :)


onthecan
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 318
   Posted 4/25/2009 9:55 AM (GMT -7)   
cry  Hi HM sorry to hear you lost your doc that sucks i know mine was forced into retirement at 68 and was the smartest person i ever new,its not easy for me to warm up to a new doctor i don't know about you but it takes me a long time before i trust anyone doctors included. I would let the new doc know that your past doc was going to repeat the scope every year or 6 months cause alot of the new doc's don't view old files it wouldn't hurt to ask him. Good Luck Jenn yeah
Had Crohns 17 years had numerous bowel resections,fistulas,fissures,hemmies,kidney problems,fibro,arthritis,dignosed at 13 had GI feeding tube,nasal feeding tube,cental lines,ports,4 ruptured bowel emergency surgeries,TMJ,depression,current meds are Hydromorphone,30 ,Hydromophome,8 ,Ketoprofen,100 ,Trazadone,50 ,Lorazepam,10 ,Zopliclone,5 ,atriplyine,75 ,Losac,50 Tylenol Athritis ,B-12 injections ,Iron injections ,Gravol,75 Predisone,5mg ,Humira,40mg once a week.Still looking for the doctor with all the answers if you find him forward him to me please.P.S my bathroom is the nicest room in my house cause i spend so much time there,i am thinking about installing the computer and maybe a hot-dog stand.


Zanne
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 3763
   Posted 4/25/2009 2:50 PM (GMT -7)   
I went through a time a few years ago when I had about 8 colonoscopies in about 10 months or so, most of those we tacked on an endoscopy just for good measure. I was so sick and they couldn't figure out why, that I was just glad they were trying to do something. But since then, my GI doesn't like to jink things so to speak. He doesn't even like to set up appointments unless things are going down hill. Just call if I think I need to see him. Unfortunately, I had to call to set up an appointment cause I'm gradually having an increase in symptoms. I'm sure that when I see him I'll have to schedule a colonoscopy and I am not looking forward to it. As everyone else said, not the test so much, but the lovely prep. For the last few years, I have insisted on the pill preps, but I'm not sure if they are still allowed. Black box warning and all. I'm still going to try, but ....
Suzanne

CD 20 years officially, 30 unofficially. 3 resections '93, '95 '97
Managing with strict low residue diet, keeping symptoms to a minimum. All test show small amount of ulceration, still have occasional blockages. But still have a great time with my 2 daughters and husband!


Prednisone, 6MP,Prevacid, B12 shots, Bentyl, Xifaxan.....

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