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M1954 M1954 3

Late getting colonoscopy

let me say I do suffer from generalized anxiety and I always think the worst when it comes to my health that us why I try to be in time for all of my tests.  I was mortified when I realizedrecentkyi was actually due fir my 10 year colonoscopy in 2015 instead of 2106 actually due December 2016.  I fortunately don't seem to have symptoms but I have stuck in my mind that because I'm late it's now going to be bad news.  I am getting it done next month and some days  I worry obsessiveyabout the results.  What bothers me the most is if there is bads news it would be my fault for screwing up the date. I love my life so much with my family I couldn't bear to think I caused this.  Thank you for listening. I am a healthy 63 year old woman loving  life but afraid basically because I'm late. I had a perfect one in December 2005.

10 Replies

  • craig84609 craig84609 M1954

    I wouldn't lose sleep over this. I was over 5 years overdue for one that had been suggested that I go in every 18 months due to me having Crohn's disease so my cancer risk is several times higher than the average person. I waited ten years to have my next one. They found three polyps and one was large, but none of them were cancerous. Don't worry, just get it done for your peace of mind. If I were healthy I wouldn't even go in for one. There are risks to these tests and it isn't a risk that I like to take, but it is the only way they have of checking the progression of the disease I have. Most likely you will be fine.

  • etheremail etheremail M1954

    There's no particular magic in the dates. If you were given a 10 year period it meant you were seen as very low risk. I missed my10 year test by 5 years so don't worry. Polyps turning into tumours are very slow generally. If you were clear in 2005, it's very unlikely you will have anything serious now. I think the consultants who are doing these tests again and again are usually pretty good at assessing the risk level. So don't worry. My consultant didn't even comment on my being five years late...

    • john01315 john01315 etheremail

      I could use Dr Google, but I'll ask here. My 3 year colonoscopy is at the end of this year, it will be 4 years after surgery. Any idea how long a new tumour would take to develop and grow? The yearly one was all clear, but being me, I'm already starting to be anxious about the approaching one! 

      They took about half my bowel in an extended right hemicolectomy. CEA tests have all been good, as was  CT scan after 18 months. 

    • etheremail etheremail john01315

      Sorry to hear that and very good luck to you. Glad they got it. I expect the one yearly is just to check they did get everything (as with the scans). That being so they will now want to check if any new polyps are there because some people have a tendency to develop them as we know and they will want to treat them while they are easy to remove and before they or any of them become malignant which usually takes a period of time AFTER the polyp has itself been there for a period of time. The three year window is obviously sensible because of your prior history but I am sure is chosen with plenty of safety room. I know someone who always develops one or two in the three yearly period but they are always zapped and none had turned malignant. The thing I don't know is if different segments of the gut are more prone to be affected in different people (bit like Crohns disease) but if that is the case you may never even have a polyp again. Primary Bowel cancer is a terrible thing but it has one thing in the patient's favour. It is generally a slow one to develop and it often has this polyp stage first so at least it's one that can be caught if you have the colponoscopies. Often I think people fuss a bit too much about the exact dates between colponoscopies but if you have had trouble then I think you stick to the exact date they give you and report any unusual symptoms even in advance of that date. Sounds as if you are doing very well (and I have made the sign about not tempting fate lol) and best of good luck you you in the future. Other people on this site who have been in your boat may be able to give you more specific thoughts.

    • john01315 john01315 etheremail

      Great reply! Thanks Etheremail. My weird logic is that the chances of finding anything are half what there were, as I've got only half my bowel. Hmmm. It seems as if polyps etc take quite a while to develop and then more time to become a cancer problem. Nothing was found just over 2 1/2 years ago with the colonoscopy. Or the CT scan about 18 months ago. But sadly, I am a worrier. I'm getting councelling which may help. On top of all that, my gallbladder was removed with open surgery 3 weeks ago. Getting quite a collection of scars, with the hernia. But that was the same incision as the cancer. Anyway, enough of that, or I'll start writing with all the surgical findings and details. And recent blood tests, etc etc. Thanks again and best wishes to you wherever you are...

    • etheremail etheremail john01315

      Thanks John. Worry is a beast! Truth is anything could happen to any of us at anytime and the thing that has got our name on it is the one we usually didn't even think about like people who have a plane crash into their house. We can only work with logic and logically you should be fine at 3 years and if anything is poking its nose above the surface it can be zapped years before it does any harm. The medics are pretty conservative so they usually build in a big margin for error and I have seen that people who had malignant bowel tumours normally are in the same routine for testing as you. So I shouldn't get too stressed cos that isn't good for your digestive system.

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