Having a colonoscopy

It is an examination of the bowel performed by passing a thin, flexible tube, called a colonoscope, via the back passage and along the large intestine (colon). The test is usually performed as a day-case under conscious sedation. This allows examination of the large bowel (colon) and last part of the small bowel (terminal ileum). It may be necessary to take a biopsy (small piece of tissue) for further investigation. This is done painlessly through the tube using tiny forceps. The test takes about 20-30 minutes to complete. The test sometimes picks up polyps (small projections of tissue) which are easily removed and prevent the development of bowel cancer. Why not listen to Dr Pollok talking about bowel cancer and colonoscopy in a recent radio interview.
Colonoscopy procedure code H2002 

Having a Flexible Sigmoidoscopy

Sometimes a shortened version of a colonoscopy procedure called a flexible-sigmoidoscopy may be done instead which visualises the left side of the colon only. This procedure takes about 10-15 minutes and does usually require sedation or prior bowel prep. When you arrive at the day-case unit the nurse caring for you will insert an enema  to clear your bowel prior to the procedure. Flexible Sigmoidoscopy procedure code H2502

An information leaflet on preparation for colonoscopy may downloaded as a PDF document (see below) or is available from Parkside Hospital pharmacy, telephone 0208 971 8000.

What is an endoscopy (gastroscopy or OGD)?

It is an examination of your oesophagus (gullet), stomach and duodenum (the first part of the bowel beyond the stomach). A thin flexible tube is passed through the mouth into the stomach. The test is performed as a day-case under light sedation or local anaesthetic sprayed on the back of the throat. The test is very quick and much easier than might be thought. It is important that you have nothing to eat or drink for at least4 hours before the test. You may take your regular medications but should inform Dr Pollok if you are on blood thinning medicines. The test helps to diagnose acid reflux or oesophagitis, hiatus hernia, gastric or duodenal ulcer disease, Barrett’s oesophagus, coeliac disease and less common conditions including oesophageal and stomach cancer.

Gastroscopy or upper GI endoscopy or OGD (short for oesophago-gastro-duodenoscopy) procedure code G6500

There are 3 main types of endoscopy –procedure codes below-to look at the stomach and the bowel:-

Endoscopy also known as Gastroscopy or OGD short for oesophago-gastro-duodenoscopy, to look at the food pipe (oesophagus), stomach and first part of the bowel beyond the stomach called the duodenum

(procedure code G6500)


Colonoscopy, to look at the large bowel (called the colon) or lower GI tract for which you take a bowel prep fro the day before

(procedure code H2002)


Flexible Sigmoidoscopy, to look at the lower part of the large bowel (called the colon) without full bowel prep

(procedure code H2502)