I have had IBS for most of my life and I have had rectal bleeding for the past 5 years. I am pretty sure it is an external hemorrhoid because there is a small lump and usually it will swell up and become itchy for awhile and then after I have blood the swelling will go down. This happens a couple times a year but the lump never goes away. My GI wants me to have a colonoscopy to rule out cancer or colitis or anything else but I am terrified of the procedure and have rescheduled it several times already. I am scared because I have been doing research and there seem to be a lot of cases where people think they just have hemorrhoids but it turns out to be cancer. Also about two years ago I changed my diet, I cut out dairy and junk food and try to eat healthy...I lost a lot of weight and I don't have much problems with IBS any more. Sometimes I still get diarrhea but it is usually due to eating poorly...I have constipation sometimes but I take probiotics for that and I feel much healthier than I use to about five years ago when I have chronic constipation and diarrhea which is when the bleeding first started. I also started having random stomach cramps recently, mostly on my sides and really low and to the right near my pelvis....these would come and go for about a month but I think it's gone now. I keep freaking out that I may have colon cancer but I also freak out about the colonoscopy...I'm afraid of complications and I'm just terrified. My colonoscopy is this Thursday and I'm probably going to cancel it. I'm too stressed out.
Colonoscopies are not bad at all. The prep is not fun - you'll spend a LOT of time in the bathroom! But the scope itself is easypeasy. And the peace of mind you'll have afterward is the best part. As with everything, the anticipation is the worst. You can do this and you'll be all the better for it.
I agree, a colonoscopy is not bad. The prep is no fun because you can't eat the day before. Only clear liquids and of course the laxative preps they give you. The procedure itself is painless, you won't remember anything. I was pretty hysterical for my first one (I've had 3) because a stool test had come back positive for possible cancer, however, after the colonoscopy everything was fine and I worked myself into a tizzy for nothing. I go back every 3 years to be safe since colon cancer runs in my family. Don't be afraid, just do it and get it over with and stop worrying
As the other folks have said, colonoscopies are not bad. I've had a bunch, since colon cancer also runs in my family. They are good to do, because if by any chance you do have it, it's best to catch it early.
Both of my relatives who had it just had surgery to remove the cancer and surrounding intestine, and they were fine.
For your own piece of mind, please just bite the bullet, so to speak, and get checked out. Okay?