A flexible sigmoidoscopy (flex sig) is a procedure that allows the physician to visually exam a small portion of a patient's large intestine known as the sigmoid colon. The physician will use an instrument called a colonoscope, a small diameter, flexible, lighted fiberoptic or video endoscope, for this brief procedure. This scope is inserted through the anus and is advanced approximately one to two feet into the sigmoid colon allowing the physician to visualize and capture pictures of any areas of concern. The colonoscope also has open channels that allow the physician to advance other instruments that may be needed to remove lesions, polyps, and take biopsies to aid in the diagnosis of any suspicious looking area. If the findings of the flex sig warrant further investigation, then a colonoscopy may be scheduled for further evaluation. A flex sig is usually performed as an outpatient exam and lasts from 5 to 15 minutes and requires no sedation.