An anoscope is a lighted speculum used to perform a procedure called an anoscopy. An anoscopy is an examination of the anus and rectum using an anoscope. It can be used to evaluate a number of health problems, including tears inside the anus, abnormal cell growth, and hemorrhoids.
There’s no real preparation necessary before a person has an anoscopy. Patients may choose to urinate and have a bowel movement before the procedure in order to increase their comfort during the exam. Usually, anoscopies are performed in a doctor’s office, and hospitalization is not required. A patient may learn the results of his exam soon after having the procedure. Since there are no lab results to wait for, a doctor can share the results of the exam right away.
The anus is the opening at the end of a person’s digestive tract, and the rectum is the final few inches of it. When a doctor uses an anoscope to examine this area, he usually has a patient bend over or lie on a table with his knees up in order to allow better access to the area. He then applies a lubricant to the anoscope. This makes the instrument easier to insert into the anus and ensures a greater comfort level for the patient. The doctor then inserts the instrument into the patient’s anus.
An anoscope is only a few inches long and is about as wide as a bowel movement. It’s inserted just a few inches into the anus, but some people find the idea of the examination uncomfortable and clench their muscles in response. To ease insertion, a doctor may ask the patient to push as if he is trying to have a bowel movement, relaxing his muscles immediately after the push. Not only can this help to make the insertion of the instrument more comfortable, but it may also help the doctor to note any bumps or blockages in the anus.
The light on the end of an anoscope allows a doctor to view abnormalities in the anus and the lower portion of the rectum. Once the examination is finished, a doctor usually removes the instrument slowly in order to prevent discomfort for the patient. Examination by anoscope isn’t dangerous. A patient with hemorrhoids may experience slight bleeding after the examination. Pain isn’t typical for those who have anoscopies, but many people feel the urge to have a bowel movement during the exam.