Everyone should know that a lower GI is a very common and important exam used to diagnose many colon conditions. A lower GI examination, also know as a barium enema, is an x-ray examination of the large intestine. The large intestine, or large bowel, consists of the entire colon, including the appendix, rectum, and sigmoid colon. This commonly performed test is essentially the predecessor to the more familiar colonoscopy. A lower GI is used worldwide to help diagnose fatal diseases and many other problems that affect the large intestine.
Some of the reasons that your doctor might order this exam are if you are experiencing diarrhea, constipation, blood in your stool, unexplained weight loss, anemia, to screen for colon polyps or colorectal cancer. Because this test demonstrates the large bowel, it is imperative to clean out the bowel completely. The smallest amount of stool left in the intestine can affect the accuracy of the test. To ensure the colon is cleaned the...