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David A. Kloss

M.D., F.A.C.S.
Phone: (218) 631-3510

Dr. Kloss
In the News

Dr. Kloss pioneers aortic stent graft procedure.

Dr. Kloss on screening colonoscopy
  • As talkshow guest

  • Surgical Services...

    Screening Colonoscopy

    Colon cancer is the number 2 cancer killer behind lung cancer in America. Cigarettes are the most important and preventable cause of lung cancer. But colon cancer is not so clearly linked to a preventable cause. The medical profession believes colon cancer in America is linked to our diet which in high in animal fat, high in cholesterol and low in roughage (raw vegetables) and low in unprocessed bran and wheat. In addition we don't drink enough water throughout the day and lead a very sedentary, inactive life style.

    In ways that are not entirely clear, these factors combined with family history and dramatically increase the incidence of colon polyps and colon cancer in America.

    The good news is that a colonoscopy can detect colon polyps and colon cancers before they can cause troubles (invade the surrounding tissues or spread to the liver).

    Pictured above, left: Normal, healthy colon; right: colon with small polyp

    But a colonoscopy won't prevent colon cancer if you don't have your own screening colonoscopy done! We have found that very often in families, it is the wife who has the colonoscopy first. For some reason men put it off (sometimes for years; and sometimes with very terrible consequences). So, men, listen to your wives and come in for your screening colonoscopy!!

    The colonoscopy is an outpatient procedure. Dr. Kloss is a board certified general surgeon and highly proficient in both "screening colonoscopy" and "diagnostic colonoscopy". What is the difference? A screening colonoscopy is done not because you are having any symptoms, but just because you have turned 50 (the usual age to have your first colonoscopy done) or perhaps 45 (if you have a close relative with colon cancer). A diagnostic colonoscopy is done not as a "routine" but because you are having symptoms (perhaps bleeding or abdominal pain or a change in your bowel habits). If these things are happening to you, PLEASE see your medical doctor and arrange to have a colonoscopy! We don't want to miss a chance to save your life! Colon cancer is treatable and even preventable if caught in time!

    image of snaring polyp for biopsy
    Just like most hernia surgery, colonoscopy is most often done as an outpatient. Most insurance companies allow "MAC" anesthesia with an anesthetist assisting the surgeon; the surgeon performs the colonoscopy while the anesthetist monitors your breathing. You will be very comfortable. If a polyp or suspicious mass is found, a biopsy will be done and the lesion evaluated by the pathologist.

    Several days later you'll have your result and if the colonoscopy was negative you'll be "good to go" for 5 to 10 years depending upon your family history!!

    Pictured above, left: a large colon cancer; right: a "snare polypectomy"

    Please check out the American Cancer Society's web page ( if you have further questions regarding colon cancer screening.

    ...more information on colonoscopy and colon cancer screening

    415 Jefferson Street North   •   Tri-County Hospital   •   Wadena, Minnesota