Is the Cologuard test a replacement for the Colonoscopy

Posted on Mar 19, 2023 in

Is the Cologuard test a replacement for the Colonoscopy


Doctors use the Cologuard and Colonoscopy tests for those 45 and older to help monitor blood in the stool, abnormal DNA, and precancerous cells. Cancer often starts with a growth, more commonly known as a polyp. Colon cancer is preventable using both the Cologuard and the Colonoscopy. But check the fine print before you skip the Colonoscopy!


Colon cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States, and rates are rising, particularly in adults ages 20 to 49. Unfortunately, approximately 30% of eligible people in the US still have not been screened for CRC.  Colon cancer screening decisions: What’s the best option and when? – Harvard Health


Colonoscopy, the gold standard

Test is 95% effective for detecting colon cancer and identifying large polyps

Cleansing preparation at home the day before

Light sedation while the doctor views the colon for polyps, then removes them simultaneously

Recommended every ten years

Insurance covers

The Cologuard, 13% false-positive rate leads to further assessment with Colonoscopy

Test is 92% effective for identifying cancer but only for 42% of the larger growths

A stool sample is obtained at home and then mailed to the lab

With the discovery of polyps, the next step is a colonoscopy

Recommended every three years

Depending on the insurance, partially covered

Those at high risk for colon cancer

A family history of Crohn’s disease or Ulcerative colitis

African American or Ashkenazi Jewish descent

Warning symptoms to ask your doctor about

A change in your bowel regimen, for example diarrhea or constipation

Blood in the stool

Abdominal pain, cramps, or gas

Weight loss

When screening is performed regularly and polyps are found, the survival rate is 90%.

Colonoscopy vs. Cologuard: Which Is Right for You? – Health News Hub