Silver Cross Hospital

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A sigmoidoscopy is usually a outpatient, endoscopic procedure that examines the inner lining of your rectum and the lower part of your colon (the sigmoid colon) by using a lighted flexible tube connected to an eyepiece or video screen for viewing. 

Patients are usually not sedated during a sigmoidoscopy. During the procedure, your doctor might ask you to shift every so often to make it easier to move the scope. This may cause some discomfort, but it is typically not painful. If there are any polyps or growths, the doctor may remove them along with abnormal areas in your colon may require small pieces of tissue removed for further examination. The procedure usually takes 10-20 minutes.

A sigmoidoscopy is performed to help the doctor check for:

  • bowel disorders (diarrhea, constipation, or irritable bowel syndrome (IBS))
  • rectal bleeding
  • ulcers
  • abnormal cells
  • polyps (usually benign growths)
  • colon and rectal cancer 

The procedure may help determine the specific causes of symptoms and conditions that can be monitored for effective treatment. Polyps and tumors can be discovered at an early stage before symptoms are present. Depending on your personal health history and if your family has a history of colorectal cancer, a sigmoidoscopy might be performed every 5 years starting at the age of 50.



Located at 1900 Silver Cross Blvd., New Lenox, IL 60451   Main Phone (815) 300-1100

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Physicians on Silver Cross Hospital’s Medical Staff have expertise in their areas of practice to meet the needs of patients seeking their care.  These physicians are independent practitioners on the Medical Staff and are not the agents or employees of Silver Cross Hospital. They treat patients based upon their independent medical judgment and they bill patients separately for their services.