Flexible Sigmoidoscopy (Flex Sig)
- Using a short, thin, flexible tube with lights, the physician checks for polyps or cancer inside the rectum and lower third of the colon. This type of screening should be done every five years. If you physician uses Flex Sig along with High-Sensitivity FOBT, the test should be done every three years.
- This is typically used as a follow-up test if any abnormalities are found during one of the aforementioned screenings. If used for regular screening, this should be done every ten years. Physicians use a longer, thin, flexible tube with lights to check for polyps or cancer inside the rectum and entire colon.
Sometimes, physicians may try to use three other types of screenings. However, these are not recommended by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force and many insurance plans don’t cover these. A double contract barium enema allows the doctor to see the outline of your colon on an x-ray. A virtual colonoscopy also uses x-rays and computers to get a better picture of your entire colon. Lastly, a stool DNA test collects an entire bowel movement to be checked at a lab for cancerous cells.