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Can a emergency CT scan detect bowel cancer?

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Can a emergency CT scan detect bowel cancer?

Postby guin » Wed Apr 11, 2012 8:35 pm

i was taken to A&E a month ago with lower abdominal pain and constant diarrhoea,i was taken through to have a CT scan but i have since heard that when you have this scan,you have a tube up your bottom to pump air in and have to lie in 2 different positions but when i had my scan done all they did was inject something into the drip on my hand and i was then put in the scanner so does this mean i was not scanned properly enough for a correct diagnosis,i was told my bowel looked clear and i also had a ultrasound 2 days later that was also clear but im worried they did not scan me right and that i could have have bowel cancer i know it is a very small chance but still worried,,i have had diarrhoea for about 10 years and 10 years ago i had a sigmodoscopy which was clear but the diarrhoea has always been brown and a little thick but more recently it has been yellow and watery so i think something could be wrong and that i was not scanned right,,whilst in hospital they found i had a overactive thyroid for which im waiting to start my treatment,,,im 31 and female any help would be great,i live in the UK
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Can a emergency CT scan detect bowel cancer?

Postby boot » Wed Apr 11, 2012 8:36 pm

No, a CT scan doesn't test for cancer. The only way to test for cancer is to take a biopsy and see if the cells are cancerous. If you think you have colon cancer, you need to go and get a colonoscopy done. If you have small abnormalities in the wall of your colon called polyps, they'll snip them (it doesn't hurt because you don't have pain receptors in your colon) and then test them for cancerous cells in a lab.
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Can a emergency CT scan detect bowel cancer?

Postby taji93 » Wed Apr 11, 2012 8:42 pm

a ct scan can only detect cancer or a tumor if it is big enough to be seen. a few mm at least and even then they wont assume its cancer without further tests. as you have been suffering from diarrhoea for a long time i doubt it is cancer. yellow stools indicate an infection. i would request for another colonoscopy. maybe your overactive thyroid causes quicker bowel movements.
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Can a emergency CT scan detect bowel cancer?

Postby leonardo » Wed Apr 11, 2012 8:50 pm

Yes a CT could detect colon cancer, but what you heard about the procedure is wrong,
You need to see a GI doctor, not a hospital and have a colonoscopy, not a sigmoidoscopy.
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Can a emergency CT scan detect bowel cancer?

Postby amlawdd31 » Wed Apr 11, 2012 8:54 pm

They probably gave you iodine through the i.v. so it would allow activity to light up on the scan (if there were any). If it didn't show any kind of growth, then don't worry that it's cancer. There are tons of GI problems it could be. Has anyone ever talked to you about irritable bowel, food allergies, or Crohn's? Those are just a couple ideas.

The test with pumping air up your bum is a colonoscopy.
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