What is a colonoscopy?


A colonoscopy is a procedure used to detect changes or abnormalities in the colon and rectum. The colon, or large intestine, is part of your digestive system. It connects the small intestine to the rectum.

How it works


During a colonoscopy, a long and flexible tube called a colonoscope is inserted through the anus and carefully pushed into the rectum and colon. A tiny video camera at the tip of the tube allows the doctor to view the inside of the entire colon.

This procedure is usually done under sedation for the patient's comfort.

Why do you need a colonoscopy?

Your doctor might recommend a colonoscopy if you have symptoms that suggest potential abnormalities in your colon or rectum.

These symptoms include:

  • Rectal bleeding
  • Blood in the stool
  • Changes in bowel habits such as constipation or diarrhoea
  • Abnormal weight loss
  • Abdominal pain

Screening for cancer

Colonoscopy is also a screening method for colon cancer, colon polyps and inflammatory bowel diseases.

Consider going for a colonoscopy if you:

  • Are above 45 years old
  • Have a family history of colon cancer

What are the risks and complications of a colonoscopy?

A colonoscopy is considered to be a safe procedure. Risks such as adverse reaction to the sedative, bleeding from the biopsy site or perforation of the colon or rectum wall are rare. Less than 1% of patients suffer from these complications.

Why choose Mount Elizabeth Hospitals?

At Mount Elizabeth Hospitals, we have built a reputation for quality gastroenterology care and treatment in Singapore and the region.

Our skilled team of gastroenterologists, specialty nurses and therapists adopt a holistic approach to ensure our patients undergoing colonoscopy receive an accurate diagnosis and follow-up care.

Recover in the soothing and pleasant ambience of comfortably-furnished rooms in our well-equipped private hospital.

Estimated cost

Private healthcare can be affordable. Use our Hospital Bill Estimator to determine the estimated cost of this procedure. If you have hospital insurance, find out how you can use your insurance.

Our gastroenterologists and general surgeons

At Mount Elizabeth Hospitals, our colonoscopy patients are in the good hands of our team of gastro specialties and general surgeons who specialise in the full spectrum of gut and digestive system issues.

Our specialists are skilled in the use of minimally-invasive diagnostic tools like endoscopic ultrasound (EUS) as well as advanced surgical techniques that eliminate the need for open surgery.

Please check with your insurance provider for more information, and for their most up-to-date list of panel doctors.

^Specialists may qualify to be on the Extended Panel (EP). You may enjoy selected panel benefits depending on your policy and riders.
This page has been reviewed by our medical content reviewers.

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