Dhiraj Gulati

About Dhiraj Gulati

Dhiraj Gulati, MD is board-certified gastroenterologist. He has advanced training for the diagnosis and treatment of digestive conditions that affect both upper GI and lower intestinal tracts. Dr. Gulati’s expert knowledge help patients find relief from troublesome issues and he works closely with them to find the best approach for their unique needs. Dr. Gulati is welcoming new patients to his practice locations in Aurora and Yorkville. Schedule an appointment online at www.rushcopley.com/Gulati

Colonoscopy: Have No Fear

Colonoscopy is a test use to examine the lining of large bowel or colon. The instrument has a light source, and a lens attached to a video monitor. The test is used for colon cancer screening and for diagnosis of various other diseases involving the colon in patients who may have bowel symptoms like bleeding or diarrhea.

Is the test as bad as it sounds? The answer is no. Fears and misconceptions persist like “will I be able to drink the prep”, or “it may hurt”, “complication may occur”, “I am not the one who will get colon cancer.” The fact is, colonoscopy is one of the safest procedures performed by a gastroenterologist.

Each year, 150,000 new cases of colon cancer are diagnosed and 50,000 people die from it. 60% of these lives can be saved by increasing awareness for screening of colon cancer. Colonoscopy not only helps detect precancerous growths called polyps but also gives the ability to remove them there and then. This prevents colon cancer in future.

Colonoscopy may be inconvenient but it’s not painful. It takes less than 45 minutes and you are sedated during this time. Colon prep these days are split into two halves, first half is taken the night before the procedure and the other half in the morning of the procedure, making it tolerable. In fact, lower volume prep solutions are also available these days.

Chances of someone having colon cancer over their lifetime is 1 in 20 which is high. This can be prevented by timely screening. Bottom line is, do not skip out on screening. Although colonoscopy is one of the most accurate test for colon cancer screening, there are other stool based tests which you may qualify for. So, talk to your doctor and get screened today.

Screening is Key to Fight Colon Cancer

Colorectal cancer (CRC) is a common and lethal disease. CRC is the fourth common cancer in the United States and second leading cause of cancer death. It is estimated that approximately 135,000 new cases of colon cancer are diagnosed annually in the United States. About 50,000 Americans are expected to die of CRC each year. Both men and women are at the same risk of getting CRC. About four of every 100 adults will be diagnosed with CRC in their lifetime. Risk factors for CRC include advancing age, family member with CRC, person history of colon polyps, obesity, smoking, heavy alcohol intake, red meat, and African-American race.

But despite all that, the good news is that CRC is preventable! Various screening tools help detect not only cancer but pre-cancerous polyps which when removed, preventing colon cancer. The U.S.Multi-Society Task Force on Colorectal Cancer (MSTF) has approved six screening tools which include Colonoscopy every 10 years, fecal immunochemical test (FIT) annually, CT colonography every fice years, FIT-fecal DNA  every three years, Flexible Sigmoidoscopy every five to 10 years, and Capsule colonoscopy every five years. Of these tests, colonoscopy is the only test which not just indentifies pre-cancerous polyps but has the ability to remove them at the same time. Screening for CRC should start at age 50. However, it may start early if you have a family member with CRC, or history of ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease.  Subsequent screening  interval and method may vary if at any point your screening test is abnormal.

CRC claims lives and many are preventable with timely screening. Although one screening method might be better than the other, any screening is better than no screening. Talk to your doctor today and get a test which works best for you.

Learn more about screening and schedule an appointment at www.rushcopley.com/services/digestive-health.