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Is there an age limit for a colonoscopy?

February 01, 2020

On call

Q. I'm 80 and no longer do colon cancer screening. However, I recently noticed some bleeding from my rectum. Does that change my need for a colonoscopy?

A. Screening for a disease means the person has no symptoms. Since you now have rectal bleeding, a colonoscopy would be considered not a screening test, but a diagnostic test. Whether you have it now or wait to see if more bleeding occurs depends upon many factors. The most important question is whether anything found on the colonoscopy will lead to treatment that improves your quality of life.

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