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Saturday, October 15, 2011

Virtual Colonoscopy Anyone?

 I consider myself to be quite tech savvy but sometimes even I am blown away at what we have achieved! One of the few constants as a surgeon is that you are likely to find at least one constipated patient per week, at least one obstructed patient a month and at least one Colon cancer a year.

The Gold Standard for detecting this deadly disease is, and has been for a while now, a Colonoscopy. I fear, though, that this simple, but wonderful examination has finally met its match. Like most things on the cloud now, this is just one more thing that has gone virtual. This is a big leap from the olden days, when even the television monitor wasn't available to the proctologist. This is how he did it then.

Virtual Colonoscopy is here and is here to stay in my opinion. It's just a matter of time before more centers pick up the technology and offer it at a price that would rival the regular colonoscopy exam (which is quite cheap right now). The images are just stunning. The advantages are tremendous. 

The regular colonoscopy is a fairly uncomfortable procedure. Imagine, having a pipe shoved up your rear end with a machine pumping air in so as to open up the colon for easy maneuverability. Shudder!! A lot of people have to put up with it though, and they do (or did) for lack of options so far! 

Of course there is capsule endoscopy but I don't think that will last. First, it's too expensive and not likely to get cheap. Second, you still have to collect the capsule the next day, after it has passed all through your bowels, which reduces compliance a lot (for obvious reasons)

Virtual Colonoscopy should come as a saviour to people who need a endoscopy and don't want to go through the options above! I haven't been able to fully judge the potential of this yet but am hoping to do this soon. Here's a comparison of images for you to ponder over!


Anjum Dhir Kulkarni said...

This is great, anything that eases any sort of pain and discomfort is always welcome!:)

Unknown said...

Virtual colonoscopy is a procedure used to look for signs of pre-cancerous growths, called polyps; cancer; and other diseases of the large intestine. Images of the large intestine are taken using computerized tomography (CT) or, less often, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). A computer puts the images together to create an animated, three-dimensional view of the inside of the large intestine.

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