Flexible sigmoidoscopy

A Flexible sigmoidoscopy is a procedure that involves your doctor examining the rectum and lower colon. A flexible tube which is 60cm long is inserted gently via the anus and guided slowly through the rectum and lower colon.

This procedure is used to identify the causes of bleeding in the rectum, changes in your bowel habit and symptoms such as pain in the rectum along with diarrhoea. A Flexible Sigmoidoscopy can be used as part colon screening and imaging for colon cancer.

At Hadley Wood Hospital our consultants are professionally trained with many years experience therefore can offer the most appropriate advice to our patients and tailor each service to their needs.


For the procedure you will lie on a narrow bed facing the left and your knees bent. This procedure does not require an aneasthetic when taking place. Your doctor will gently put the scope into your back passage and advance to the large intestine. You can be offered pain relief from your doctor if you feel some discomfort.

Photographs of your bowel lining will be captured, if any abnormal areas are spotted tissue samples will be taken and polyps will be removed. Samples taken will be sent to the laboratory and examined by a pathologist.

You should be able to eat and drink after and return home the same day. When you arrive home you may feel a little bloated from the gas however this will pass after a couple of hours.

For more information, a quotation or to book an appointment, please contact our dedicated enquiries team who are available Monday – Friday from 8am – 6pm on 020 7317 7751 or rf.privateenquiries@nhs.net