TomBAvoider Posted March 13, 2018 Report Share Posted March 13, 2018 I have a PCP whom I generally like, but who adheres pretty strictly to conventional medicine precepts. This can be good and bad. One issue is his insistence on carrying out recommended tests once you reach a certain age. Some tests I just go along with, even though I have no particular interest in them, like PSA, which he routinely orders and which I don't mind insofar as it's part of the same blood sample being taken, so meh, why not (I've had them now for 5 years, and the results are always below 1 ng/mL). Now however, he is pressuring me to have a colonoscopy - no actual issue, just as a routine check. Unlike the PSA test, this is a highly invasive procedure, and I do have some strong concerns. My concerns center around not just the usual discussion of benefit vs risk we've been hashing out on this board, but something I have not seen discussed here at any length (unless I've missed it), is the issue of gut biome. We are learning more and more about the importance of the gut biome, and accordingly, I have attempted to cultivate my gut biome to the degree that I can, and with the limited tools and knowledge available to me. So, I've been careful to consume a ton of fiber of various kinds, fermented foods, prebiotics and probiotics, variety of F&V and grains to increase gut biome diversity . I have also attempted to limit foods which might skew my gut biome toward bad bacteria, avoid antibiotics as much as I can as well as medications which can affect the biome etc. In short, I've tried insofar as I can, to take care of my gut biome. A colonoscopy - the preparation phase in particular - decimate the gut biome. I've tried to google for more info, but as is repeatedly stressed, the issue has not been studied much, though it is acknowledged as a concern. Of the few studies we have, there is strong indication that both the load and the diversity of the biome collapses (31 fold!): https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/837467 - and the profile of what comes back can be drastically affected, very often in favor of "bad" bacteria (especially for folks with IBD etc.). There are conflicting reports about the degree to which the biome recovers after this procedure. It seems some strains never come back, other strains are over-represented. Obviously, I would try to replenish with pre-pro-biotics, fiber, F&V etc., but I am worried about the harm this is doing and to what degree this represents a risk of permanent impairment of a gut biome I've spent decades cultivating. Thoughts? Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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