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Posted By : Anxious Gal - 10/2/2017 9:07 AM
Hi, I scheduled a colonoscopy for tomorrow. I'm 53 and this is my second colonoscopy, the first being almost ten years ago to the week when I was 43. To be clear, I couldn't care less about the actual procedure--if I thought it would keep me from developing issues, heck, I'd have one every year if I could.

No, I'm worried that the surgeon will find something wrong. The first colonoscopy was prescribed because I was having anal pain. Sharp, stabbing pains that came on fairly quickly with no warning. I had no other symptoms or issues. I was diagnosed with proctalgia fugax which is literally a pain in the butt--not uncommon. My colonoscopy revealed a clear colon. The doctor told me to come back when I reached fifty.

So, the age fifty rolls around and I go to make an appt. for another scoping. The insurance company would not entertain another colonoscopy until my full ten years were up. I didn't like that but I bided my time until the ten years would be up and made an appointment last November for the coming fall. I wanted to be right on track.

about five years ago, I started to take a twice yearly over-the-counter variety of tests to determine blood in the stool. I did both the FIT and FOBT (without a doctor's supervision) which the tests revealed no blood. I continued to do this up until last week. The last test revealed no blood.

I am absolutely convinced that the surgeon will find something tomorrow. For the past couple of days, I really have had no appetite due to worry. I probably won't actually need the prepping Colyte because I've basically worried myself into diarrhea this morning.

Other salient points:

I have no family history of colon cancer.
Again, I had a clear colonoscopy exactly ten years ago.
I have seen no visible blood in my stool.
The at-home kits reveal no blood in the stool (I took one last week).
I certainly have lost no weight.

This anxiety is causing me to imagine all sorts of scenarios and, although I know better, I've been Googling Cancer Survivor Stories and colon cancer diagnosis stories on Reddit. I have convinced myself that I should have paid out of pocket for a colonoscopy when I turned 50.

Anyone have a clear take on things? Thanks in advance.

Posted By : Steve n Dallas - 10/2/2017 9:37 AM
Good ol proctalgia fugax... I have one of those t-shirts too.

Just bite the bullet and get the colonoscopy over with. Odds are you'll be fine.

I managed to wait till I was 56 before getting my first one... I too feared what the doc would find... The longer I put it off the worse my fears became... Then I reached to point of thinking that doc would look at me and say "if you'd only come in sooner."

Anyway - yes. He found some pullups and removed them... No big deal...

And you're a head of the game in that you've been scanned once before.

Good luck and let us know how it goes.

Posted By : Scaredy Cat - 10/2/2017 10:07 AM
Hi AG and welcome!

I am sorry to hear that you are so anxious about this issue. I know what a challenge fear like this can be!

Have you had similar worries regarding health issues in the past? It sounds to me like you are dealing with Health Anxiety. You have the classic manifestations and habits of one suffering HA.

First and foremost, you should stop Google/symptom searching immediately. This will not reassure you, but only feed the fear. We have all taken the unofficial oath to stay away from Dr. Google here...he is a quack. smile

Secondly, use your positive mantras to get you through this waiting for your results after your procedure. You have a 2/3rds chance of everything being just fine (a good or neutral result, vs. a worrisome one) The only thing indicating that you have anything to worry about is the anxiety itself...and anxiety is a liar...don't listen to it!

We have great self help in our Resources at the top of the main forum page here for use in lowering your anxiety in general...as well as links specifically for Health Anxiety issues. Please take advantage of this...

...and consider looking into therapy if this is an ongoing challenge for you. There is help and hope for recovery from this type of worry.

Keep posting with us as well if you find it helpful. We care, understand and support is key!

Scaredy Cat
Moderator:Anxiety/Panic

"Courage is not the abscence of fear, it is feeling afraid and doing it anyway!"

"Worrying does not empty tomorrow of its troubles...it empties today of its strength."
Corrie Ten Boom

Panic Syndrome recovery due to CBT

Posted By : Anxious Gal - 10/2/2017 10:31 AM
Yes, I do have quite a bit of Health Anxiety. I believe that it all started a little over 10 years ago, when I had several family members die of various illnesses and I received a note in the mail that my routine pap came back abnormal. Of course, abnormal paps are quite normal and it didn't turn out to be much of anything. However, that I am sure that it put me on the road to anxiety that is getting worse.

Each yearly mammogram is fettered with days and weeks of worry.

Last summer, I had to have an ultrasound to determine some Is It Menopause? issues. The ultrasound found a small mass in my uterus. I didn't eat or hardly drink anything for three days except for a small bowl of garden fresh beets--HUGE MISTAKE. The follow up CT scan revealed that it was just another fibroid--completely benign. I had convinced myself of imminent death from uterine cancer. Interestingly, the doctor told me something about the colon (as viewed from the CT scan) and that it appeared okay but I don't think pelvic CT scans reveal much about a colon so I didn't give that much credence. Then she asked me if I had scheduled a colonoscopy yet which leads me to believe that I do have something to be concerned about.

I will look at the Resources. I am a mess today and can hardly get any work done.

Posted By : Scaredy Cat - 10/2/2017 10:52 AM
Oh you poor dear! I know exactly what you are feeling.

I went through CBT for panic disorder connected with fears in regard to health...which did help immensely. I still struggle with worries, but nothing like I did previously.

Keep posting here and know you have found a place where you are understood and will be in support whenever you need it!

((((Hugs))))

S.C.
Moderator:Anxiety/Panic

"Courage is not the abscence of fear, it is feeling afraid and doing it anyway!"

"Worrying does not empty tomorrow of its troubles...it empties today of its strength."
Corrie Ten Boom

Panic Syndrome recovery due to CBT

Posted By : Anxious Gal - 10/4/2017 6:42 PM
So, I had the scoping yesterday and it turned out fine. I'm going to seek help for these anxieties. I can't go on with the constant worrying. Thanks for your support!

Posted By : Scaredy Cat - 10/4/2017 9:22 PM
AG,

I am so glad all went well...great job on getting through it!!!

I am so proud of you...and know that you will make progrss with the help that you are going to seek.smile

Keep us updated, and we will be here to cheer you on in your recovery!

S.C.
Moderator:Anxiety/Panic

"Courage is not the abscence of fear, it is feeling afraid and doing it anyway!"

"Worrying does not empty tomorrow of its troubles...it empties today of its strength."
Corrie Ten Boom

Panic Syndrome recovery due to CBT

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