The Colorectal Screening Clinic or CRC offers colonoscopy screenings and care to ANMC patients. Colorectal or colon cancer is one of the most frequently diagnosed cancers among Alaska Native people and also one of the most preventable and treatable types of the disease. An important step to preventing colon cancer is to be screened.
ANTHC recommends that Alaska Native men and women begin screening by age 40. Screening tests can find colon problems early, so they can be taken care of before they get serious.
How do I make an appointment?
To make an appointment, your primary care provider or another specialty clinic must set up the referral.
If you have any questions, please contact our clinic and we can work with you and your provider on the appropriate referral.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a colonoscopy?
A colonoscopy is an exam of the lower part of the gastrointestinal digestive tract, which is called the colon or large intestine or bowel. The colon is a muscular tube which is about 5-feet long, responsible for absorbing salt and water, and eliminating waste or stool from the body. A colonoscopy is a safe procedure. Colonoscopies look for and can biopsy or take a tissue sample to look for changes in the colon which may be an early sign of cancer before symptoms appear.
How is a colonoscopy performed?
You will be given medication (see below question about preparation) to help relax and then placed on your side. A colonoscope, which is a lighted, thin and flexible tube with a small camera, is inserted into your anus to advanced through your entire colon to the beginning of the colon called the cecum. The procedure generally takes between 20 and 60 minutes.
How do I prepare for my colonoscopy?
Your colon must be completely clear of stool before the colonoscopy, so your provider can see any abnormal areas. In order to do this, you will be instructed to follow a clear liquid diet with no solid food the day before your procedure. You may drink water, clear broth, juice, coffee or tea (no creamer or milk), and Jell-O (no red colors to avoid being mistaken for blood).
You will also be given medication known as the “prep” to assist in eliminating the bowel of stool. This is a liquid laxative plus several pills to ensure your colon is free of stool for your colonoscopy to be a good study.
During your preoperative visit, your provider will review your medications with you and let you know which prescriptions you may continue to take and which ones you will need to pause prior to your colonoscopy procedure.
Clinic Hours and Contact Information
Hours: 8 a.m.-5 p.m., Monday-Friday
Phone: (907) 729-4444
Location: Check-in at the Surgery and Urology Clinic front desk
Alaska Native Medical Center, first floor on Mountain Path 1