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What Is a Colonoscopy?

A colonoscopy is a common endoscopic procedure done to examine the large intestine, colon and rectum. Dr. Murrell, a colorectal specialist, will perform a colonoscopy in Los Angeles at his office as a way to diagnose or treat a number of colorectal conditions.

Dr. Murrell on NFL Total AccessSpeaking About Colonoscopies

Dr. Zuri Murrell joins Mike Frierson on NFL Total Access to talk about colorectal cancer and the importance of getting a colonoscopy.

Dr. Murrell talks about colonoscopy on NFL Total Access

How Is a Colonoscopy Performed?

A colonoscopy is done with a colonoscope, a very thin, flexible endoscopic tool that is used to both examine the colon and rectum and also treat colon and rectal conditions. A small lighted, digital camera lets Dr. Murrell exam every inch of the walls of the colon and rectum.

If needed, forceps, loops, or swabs can be used through the colonoscope device. These small tools can also be used to test and do a biopsy of the areas of the intestinal wall or remove polyps from the colon or rectal area. Typically this is an out patient procedure that Dr. Murrell performs at his Los Angeles office.

Why Choose Dr. Zuri Murrell For a Colonoscopy in Los Angeles?

Dr. Murrell is a world-renowned colorectal surgeon serving West Hollywood, Los Alamitos, Beverly Hills, Long Beach and beyond. His focus is on restoring quality of life for patients struggling with colon cancer, Crohn’s disease, hemorrhoids, colitis, and IBS using a minimally invasive surgical approach. Dr. Murrell is board-certified in colorectal surgery and was voted Top Doctor for Colon and Rectal Surgeries in 2015-2020 by his peers in Los Angeles Magazine.

Dr. Murrell takes his time to help patients understand their diagnoses and empowers them with personalized treatment options. As a nationally recognized colorectal surgeon, Dr. Murrell gives back to the community by training colleagues and students at the prestigious Cedars-Sinai in Los Angeles.

These are Dr. Murrell's credentials:

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Why Have a Colonoscopy?

A colonoscopy is not only a method for screening the bowel for cancer or determining the cause of stomach pain or diarrhea. It is also a method of cancer prevention. During the procedure Dr. Murrell looks for polyps which are clumps of abnormal tissue that grow on a mucous membrane. Polyps can occur in the nose, uterus as well as in the colon or rectum.

Most polyps are benign but some are precancerous. Removing polyps during a routine colonoscopy prevents them from becoming cancerous which is why this is one cancer that can be prevented by a test. Dr. Murrell is a strong advocate of regular colonoscopy screenings for this reason and provides among the most gentle, thorough colonoscopy Beverly Hills can provide.

Dr. Murrell has treated thousands of patients for colon-rectal conditions. What sets him apart is the care he and his staff take to educate their patients about colonoscopy procedures.

Each of Dr. Murrell’s patients is counseled as to why colonoscopies are vital in screening for an early detection of colon cancers. Symptoms of colon and rectal cancer are often not present until the condition has reached advanced stages. When detected and treated early, the cure rate for colon cancer is 80% or better. For this reason, Dr. Murrell regularly administers one of the most thorough colonoscopies in Los Angeles and Beverly Hills and recommends that patients age 50 and over with normal risk factors for colon cancer get screened on an annual basis.

Patient Testimonial

I was referred to Dr. Murrell by my OB/GYN because I turned 50, so it was time for my colonoscopy! His office got me in for a consultation within a couple of days, and his entire staff was warm and friendly. Dr. Murrell himself was engaging, funny, and a very good listener. I think he's just amazing!! I highly recommend him!


Why Being Proactive Is Important

A colonoscopy is done for a number reasons including:

  • To detect colorectal cancer or precancerous polyps
  • To determine the cause of rectal bleeding, black, bloody or dark stool, for example due to an anal fissure or hemorrhoids
  • To examine the cause of chronic diarrhea or long-term abdominal pain
  • To determine the cause of iron deficiencies
  • To study the cause of unexplained, sudden weight loss
  • To examine the colon after abnormal test results from imaging scans such as CT, MRIs or other x-rays
  • To treat Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Colonoscopies also are a highly useful tool for determining the cause of abdominal pain or other intestinal problems. If you are experiencing any such symptoms Dr. Murrell can perform a colonoscopy in Beverly Hills at his practice and utilizing this technology, he can accurately diagnose and then properly treat your condition.

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Dr. Murrell on Fox 11 News

Dr. Murrell on the Importance of Getting a Colonoscopy and Treating Colon Cancer

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What is the Aftercare Procedure?

After a colonoscopy examination, you may pass gas or feel bloated for a few hours. The air is clearing from your colon. Walking may help relieve discomfort.

Be gentle with your digestive system. Eat and drink items that are easy to digest, such as water and fluid-based foods that also avoid dehydration. Your doctor may also recommend you follow a soft, low-residue diet immediately after the procedure.

If polyps are removed during your colonoscopy, it may take up to a week to fully recover. During your recovery period, avoid activities that will exert you, including lifting anything over five pounds. It is normal to experience some minor rectal bleeding.

Colonoscopy FAQ's

Do you get colonoscopy results immediately?

If the results of a colonoscopy are normal, the doctor will let you know right away. If a biopsy is performed or a polyp is removed, it may take several days to determine the findings. The official lab results will arrive in a few weeks.

Is it better to have a colonoscopy in the morning or afternoon?

According to medical studies, the results may be more accurate when a colonoscopy is performed earlier in the day during the morning hours. While it may be inconvenient to arrive early, the benefits of a clearer diagnosis are undeniable.

Can I go to work the day after a colonoscopy?

Patients will need a friend or family member to drive them home after surgery and assist them for the first 24 hours. No driving or machinery use should occur during this time as the sedation wears off. Patients may feel gassy or bloated temporarily after their procedures, so they may want to wait a day before returning to work for this reason as well.

What happens if they find cancerous polyps during a colonoscopy?

If a polyp is found to be cancerous, the surrounding lymph nodes will also be biopsied to ensure that the cancer has not spread to other regions of the body. Radiation or chemotherapy may be recommended, depending on the specifics of the case.

Can you be left alone after a colonoscopy?

Patients are sedated during a colonoscopy, so afterward, they will be groggy and may lose coordination. It is imperative that a responsible adult accompanies the patient home after their surgery and stays with them for the first 24 hours.

Do colonoscopies hurt?

During the procedure itself, your colonoscopy will not hurt. Most patients cannot feel the tube when it is inside of them, and there is no pain during the post-procedure process.

At what age are colonoscopies unnecessary?

While there's no upper age limit for colon cancer screening, most United States medical organizations agree that the benefits of screening decline after age 75 for most people. Additionally, there's little evidence to support continuing screening after age 85.

Do I have to wait a month for a colonoscopy?

You should have your colonoscopy within ten months, but sooner is better. Waiting that long can increase your chance by up to three times of being diagnosed with an advanced stage of cancer.

Is a Colonoscopy Covered by Insurance?

Dr. Murrell is a non contracted provider with all PPO plans. He is in network with Medicare and he is also in network with Tricare Select. Please call to confirm your specific insurance plan.

Schedule Your Colonoscopy Today

Is it time to schedule your colonoscopy? Do you have questions about the procedure? Dr. Murrell performs hundreds of colonoscopy procedures each year and is ready to answer any questions you might have. Give us a call at (323) 310-1137 or click here to make an appointment today with one of the top colonoscopy doctors in Los Angeles, Zuri Murrell.

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UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine - Dr. Zuri Murrell
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American Board of Colon and Rectal Surgery - Dr. Zuri Murrell
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