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Colorectal Cancer Screening

Colorectal Cancer Screening

A colonoscopy is a test to check for precancerous growths (polyps) in the lining of your colon or rectum. Finding and removing polyps helps many people avoid a cancer diagnosis.

Colon cancer screening rates in South Texas are lower compared to other parts of the country. Doctors at Mays Cancer Center, home to UT Health San Antonio MD Anderson Cancer Center, are working to improve the health of our community by helping more people receive screening.

We take time to address your concerns so the experience is less overwhelming. We offer options to people who cannot have a colonoscopy for personal or medical reasons.

What you need to know about colonoscopy

  • Doctors use a thin flexible tube (colonoscope) to examine the lining of your colon and rectum for signs of cancer. You will not experience discomfort. You will be asleep for the procedure.
  • If the idea of a colonoscopy makes you uneasy or embarrassed, it’s better to talk to us than not get screening. We get to the source of your concerns and give you the encouragement and support you need. Some people can have a lab test as an alternative to colonoscopy.
  • Insurance plans cover colonoscopy or similar colorectal cancer screening tests by law. If you don’t have insurance, our team has specialists who can help you explore your options.

Schedule your colonoscopy today

To get more information about our services or to schedule your colorectal cancer screening test, contact us at 210-450-9000.

Why choose us for colorectal cancer screening?

A colonoscopy is the “gold standard” in colorectal cancer screening. This procedure is typically the ideal option. It allows us to find polyps or growths in the colon — and remove those polyps before they become cancer.

When you receive a colonoscopy at Mays Cancer Center, you benefit from our:

  • Experience: We perform a high volume of colonoscopies each year, and we deliver safe, thorough procedures. You get care from experienced doctors (gastroenterologists) who specialize in digestive health disorders such as colorectal cancer. Many of our specialists completed additional training through fellowships
  • Comprehensive approach: If you have a family history of colorectal cancer, genetic testing helps determine whether you are at risk. If you are, we may recommend starting regular colonoscopies at an earlier age to help manage that risk. 
  • Colon and rectal cancer expertise: If we detect signs of cancer, we refer you to our colorectal cancer experts. Our team includes surgeons, medical oncologists and radiation oncologists who specialize in treating colorectal cancer. Find out more about our gastrointestinal (GI) cancer program.

Other colorectal cancer screening options

We recommend colonoscopy to most people because it is such a reliable test. If your doctor finds polyps or signs of cancer using other screening techniques, you may still need a procedure, like a colonoscopy, to remove the polyps.

However, if you do not want a colonoscopy or cannot have one due to other medical conditions, you still have options, including:

  • Computed tomography (CT) colonoscopy: This test uses imaging technology to check the colon for abnormal growths that may be polyps.
  • Home colon cancer screening kits: You provide a stool sample and send it to a lab where doctors analyze it for signs of cancer.