Gastroenterology:   Photographs

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Ileocecal Valve

Ileocecal Valve
Ileocecal Valve
This photo demonstrates how clearly your doctor can see inside your colon during a colonoscopy exam. After your food is digested in your small intestine, the undigestible liquid waste enters your colon where excess water is reabsorbed before the stool is expelled. To prevent this waste water from flooding into the colon too rapidly, there is a "check valve" located between the end of the small intestine (ileum) and the beginning of the colon (cecum).

Called the ileo-cecal valve, this valve helps regulate how fast the small intestine dumps its liquid waste into the colon. During colonoscopy, the ileocecal valve is one one of the landmarks that your doctor might use to follow his progression during colonoscopy. When this valve is seen, your doctor knows that the scope has been passed all the way over to the right side of the colon.

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Text & Images Courtesy of Three Rivers Endoscopy Center
© Dr. Robert Fusco, Three Rivers Endoscopy Center, All Rights Reserved

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