Being at risk of having colon cancer can be a scary thing. Thankfully, there are certain screening techniques you can use to detect polyps and malignant tumors even before patients show symptoms of the condition. It’s best to learn about them if you’re planning to take up colorectal cancer CE.
This is a procedure that allows doctors to examine the colon, which is a part of the large intestine. They work with a small camera that’s attached to a flexible, lighted tube to see through colon content. It’s inserted into the rectum while the patient is sedated, enabling physicians to look for polyps or cancer tumors. They may remove these abnormal growths during the process and use them as tissue samples for biopsy.
Double-Contrast Barium Enema (DCBE)
Certain medical conditions prevent some people from undergoing a colonoscopy. In these instances, doctors perform a DCBE so they can assess a person’s colon. It’s a contrast radiography technique in which patients take an enema containing barium before going through fluoroscopy. The substance is a special dye that coats the lining of the gastrointestinal tract, so polyps and tumors would stand out in x-rays.
Stool DNA Tests
For people who prefer non-invasive evaluations, a stool DNA test is the best option. It requires no preparations or restrictions, and the person doesn’t have to undergo a medical procedure. They just have to send a stool sample to the hospital so lab technicians can examine it and look for polyps or cancer tumors. These abnormal growths shed DNA that ends up in the fecal matter.
Fecal Occult Blood Test (FOBT)
It’s similar to the previous item where a person sends their stool sample to the lab. But, instead of testing for DNA, FOBT is used to find blood in fecal matter. Polyps and cancer tumors bleed from time to time, so a positive result may indicate a colorectal disease.
You have to do some preparations before collecting a stool sample. This includes avoiding Vitamin C-rich foods like citrus fruits, juices, and supplements. You also have to take several specimens over a ten-day period to increase the chances of detecting gastrointestinal bleeding.
Attending a colorectal cancer CME and learning about these screening techniques allow you to detect the condition early. If you have patients over 50 or you know someone who has a family history of cancer, you can help them out with the knowledge of these processes.