Virtual Colonoscopy

Virtual Colonoscopy is an innovative colon cancer screening program that has been used for more than 10 years. There's comfort that comes with knowing how your body is functioning before symptoms appear - particularly if you might be at risk. Premier Diagnostic Center provides a greater degree of knowledge by pairing the insight of our leading subspecialized radiologists with advanced colon scanning technology. This provides you and your doctor with a good, minimally invasive perspective on your colorectal health.

A Virtual Colonoscopy or Colon Scan evaluates your colon for polyps and early colon cancer. Performed using a CT scanner (also known as a "CAT" scanner), the virtual colonoscopy allows us to look for areas that may be unseen with other diagnostic techniques. The scan usually takes only 20 minutes.

Who should have a virtual colonoscopy?

Virtual colonoscopy may be an important screening test for people over 50 years of age, or those who have a family history of colorectal cancer (specifically parents or siblings). It is also appropriate for those who refuse or are unable to undergo traditional colonoscopy. If you are already experiencing symptoms, you may not be a candidate for this exam. Please talk to your healthcare provider about immediate care options.

Exam preparation

  • You will receive a preparation kit for cleansing your colon the day before your exam. This preparation must be started the day prior to your examination.
  • Notify a member of the Premier Diagnostic Center staff if you are nursing or if there is a chance you could be pregnant.
  • Bring prior x-rays or scans with you to your exam, if instructed.
  • Please arrive 15 minutes early to verify your registration.

During the exam - what to expect

  • At the time of the scan, carbon dioxide will be gently introduced into your colon using a small rectal tube; it is necessary to do this in order to detect small polyps.
  • You lie on your stomach on a cushioned table, and once comfortably positioned, the tabletop will move through a gantry (shaped like a big donut), which houses the x-ray tube and a set of detectors that capture images. A second set of images will be captured as you lie on your back.

After the exam - what to expect

  • Within a few days following your exam, the subspecialty radiologist who interprets your scan will send a report to your healthcare provider. If your report warrants follow up, your healthcare provider will be able to use the information to determine a health strategy that is right for you.