A colonoscopy is a common procedure done to help detect colon cancer and other abnormalities in the large intestine. According to the Centers for Disease Control
(CDC), nearly 15 million colonoscopies were performed in the U.S. in 2012.1
The procedure is recommended for people over age 50, but it may be done in younger patients if they have a personal or family history of disease.2
This test is also done to evaluate a range of lower gastrointestinal symptoms, such as anemia, pain, bleeding, or a change in bowel habits, or for general cancer screening.