Colonoscopy Toronto: Types of Colorectal Cancer Screenings and Why Colonoscopy Is Most Preferable

Regular colorectal cancer screenings are essential for the early detection and prevention of this potentially deadly disease. Several screening options are available, each with its benefits and limitations. In this blog, we will explore different types of colorectal cancer screenings and why a colonoscopy is considered the most preferable and effective method for detecting and preventing colorectal cancer.


Colonoscopy is widely regarded as the gold standard for colorectal cancer screening. During this procedure, a thin, flexible tube with a camera (colonoscope) is inserted into the rectum and guided through the colon. It allows a physician to examine the entire colon and rectum, identify polyps or abnormal tissue, and even remove them for further analysis. A colonoscopy is not only a screening tool but also a therapeutic procedure, as it can prevent colorectal cancer by removing precancerous polyps.

Flexible Sigmoidoscopy:

Flexible sigmoidoscopy is a screening procedure that involves examining the rectum and lower part of the colon (sigmoid colon) using a flexible tube with a camera (sigmoidoscope). While it provides a partial view of the colon compared to a colonoscopy, it can still detect polyps or abnormalities in the lower portion of the colon. If any abnormalities are found during a sigmoidoscopy, a colonoscopy may be recommended to evaluate the entire colon.

Fecal Occult Blood Test (FOBT) and Fecal Immunochemical Test (FIT):

FOBT and FIT are non-invasive tests that detect hidden blood in the stool, which may indicate the presence of colorectal cancer or polyps. FOBT uses a chemical reaction to detect blood, while FIT uses

antibodies specific to human blood. These tests can be done at home using a kit provided by your healthcare provider, and the stool sample is then sent to a lab for analysis. Positive results from FOBT or FIT typically warrant further evaluation with a colonoscopy.

Stool DNA Test:

Stool DNA tests, such as the Cologuard test, are relatively newer screening options for colorectal cancer. This test examines stool samples for certain DNA markers and abnormal changes in genes associated with colorectal cancer. It can also detect the presence of blood. A positive result from a stool DNA test usually requires a follow-up colonoscopy.

Virtual Colonoscopy (CT Colonography):

Virtual colonoscopy, also known as CT colonography, is a non-invasive imaging test that uses a CT scanner to create detailed images of the colon. It provides a virtual visualization of the colon’s inner lining, enabling the detection of polyps and abnormalities. If any polyps or abnormalities are identified, a follow-up colonoscopy may be required for removal or further evaluation.

Why Colonoscopy Is Most Preferable

Colonoscopy provides a complete and detailed examination of the entire colon, enabling the detection of both small and large polyps or lesions. Precancerous polyps can be identified and removed during the procedure, significantly reducing the risk of developing colorectal cancer. Colonoscopy has high sensitivity and specificity, minimizing the chances of false-positive or false-negative results. Based on the findings during the colonoscopy, the doctor can recommend appropriate intervals for future screenings.

When it comes to screening for colorectal cancer, there are multiple options available. However, colonoscopy stands out as the preferred choice for many due to its comprehensive examination capabilities and the ability to remove polyps during the procedure. It is highly accurate and allows healthcare professionals to establish appropriate intervals for future screenings based on individual risk factors and medical conditions. If you’re considering colorectal cancer screening in Toronto, North York Endoscopy Toronto is an excellent option. Their team of experts provides colonoscopy services in a professional and caring environment. By consulting with North York Endoscopy Toronto, you can determine the most suitable screening option based on your specific circumstances. Remember, early detection through regular screenings is crucial in the fight against colorectal cancer and in promoting better health outcomes. Don’t hesitate to prioritize your health by scheduling a colonoscopy with North York Endoscopy Toronto today.

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