What is a flexible sigmoidoscopy?

A flexible sigmoidoscopy is a procedure to look at the inside of the left, lower part of your colon (large bowel) using a flexible telescope (see figure 1).  A flexible sigmoidoscopy is a good way of finding out if there is a problem in the lower part of your large bowel.

Sometimes a polyp (small growth) is the cause of the problem and the endoscopist may be able to remove it during the procedure.

Flexible Sigmoidoscopy

See large

Figure 1

Are there any alternatives to a flexible sigmoidoscopy?

Other options include a colonoscopy, a barium enema (an x-ray test of your large bowel) or a CT colography (a scan of your large bowel).

What does the procedure involve?

A flexible sigmoidoscopy usually takes 15 to 20 minutes.

The endoscopist will place a flexible telescope (endoscope) into your back passage. Air will be blown into your large bowel to help the endoscopist have a clear view. The endoscopist will be able to look for problems such as inflammation or polyps. They will be able to perform biopsies and take photographs to help make the diagnosis.

What complications can happen?

  • Allergic reaction
  • Breathing difficulties or heart irregularities
  • Infection
  • Making a hole in your colon
  • Bleeding
  • Incomplete procedure

How soon will I recover?

If you were given a sedative, you will usually recover in about an hour. You may feel a bit bloated for a few hours but this will pass.

The healthcare team will tell you what was found during the flexible sigmoidoscopy and discuss with you any treatment or follow-up you need.

You should be able to return to work the next day unless you are told otherwise.


Acknowledgements

Author: Mr Jonathan Lund DM FRCS (Gen. Surg.)

Illustrations: Medical Illustration Copyright © Medical-Artist.com


Issue date
2017-03-01
Expire date
2018-02-28

How long does it take?

Expected length of hospital stay

Day Case

Fixed prices

Private Flexible Sigmoidoscopy treatment prices.


Option In London Outside London Under 16's
£1550.00 £1375.00 n/a

Flexible Sigmoidoscopy - where does it take place?

HCA Healthcare UK hospitals offering Gastroenterology treatments

See below for the HCA hospitals that offer private Flexible Sigmoidoscopy treatment.

Treatments in Gastroenterology

Private Gastroenterology treatments at HCA Healthcare UK.


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