Why it's doneBy Mayo Clinic staff
Your doctor may recommend a flexible sigmoidoscopy exam to:
- Investigate intestinal signs and symptoms. A flexible sigmoidoscopy exam can help your doctor explore possible causes of abdominal pain, rectal bleeding, a change in bowel habits, chronic diarrhea and other intestinal problems.
- Screen for colon cancer. If you're age 50 or older and at average risk of colon cancer — you have no colon cancer risk factors other than age — your doctor may recommend a flexible sigmoidoscopy exam every five years to screen for colon cancer. Sigmoidoscopy is one option for colon cancer screening. Talk with your doctor about your options.
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- Colorectal cancer screening. Bloomington, Minn.: Institute for Clinical Systems Improvement. http://www.icsi.org/guidelines_and_more/gl_os_prot/preventive_health_maintenance/colorectal_cancer_screening/colorectal_cancer_screening_6.html. Accessed May 2, 2011.
- Flexible sigmoidoscopy. National Institute for Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. http://digestive.niddk.nih.gov/ddiseases/pubs/sigmoidoscopy/index.htm. Accessed April 29, 2011.