Colonoscopy vs. Sigmoidoscopy

Before jumping to these two words and getting often confuse in differing them you need to know about what ‘Endoscopy’ is. It can be remembered with an easy definition that Endoscopy is observing inside the body through natural openings (mouth, anus, ears) using camera. Colonoscopy and Sigmoidscopy are two examples of this (endoscopy) process. Both of these are the screen tests in which the endoscope is inserted through anus to examine problems like persistent diarrhea, bleeding from back passage and checking colorectal cancer. The main difference between them is that in sigmoidscopy just sigmoid colon and rectum are examined whereas in colonoscopy the whole of large bowel and several parts of small intestine are also examined.

What is Colonoscopy?

This is a compact screening test and due to to its bit convenience it is often not opted by the patients who are getting their bowel examine. But it should be kept noticed that it is a process of examining whole large bowel, whereas in sigmoidoscopy just examines left side of bowel, so it can happen that one may have everything ‘OK’ with the left side and have some trouble in any other part. In short, one suffering might not get examined in sigmoidscopy but in colonoscopy he/she can be checked as it is a thorough process.

What is Sigmoidoscopy?

It is the minimally invasive screening of the large intestine although it is very similar to the process of Colonoscopy as in both the process endoscope is entered in and the process is performed by the trained endoscopist. sigmoidscopy is the preferable screening test as it can be performed in just 20-30 minutes in any hospital and no sedatives might be given while preparing you for this examination. The other thing which makes it convenient is that it specifically examines parts like Sigmoid colon and rectum, where around three quarters of polyps and bowel cancers are found. That means it can point out any such harmful threat most often and it might be rare that these bowel cancers are present in other parts which can be examined by process of colonoscopy.

Key Differences between Colonoscopy and Sigmoidoscopy

  1. In colonoscopy whole of the large bowel is examined, whereas in sigmoidoscopy ‘sigmoid colon’ and rectum are keenly observed.
  2. As we know, colonoscopy is a compact process it may take 2-3 hours, while sigmoidoscopy can be done in 20-30 minutes approximately.
  3. Sigmoidoscopy is less invasive as one doesn’t have to prepare a lot to get this test, whereas Colonoscopy requires complete preparation.
  4. For the process of colonoscopy sedatives are given to the patient, whereas commonly in sigmoidoscopy not such kind of drugs are used.

Video Explanation

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