Step-by-step guide to colonoscopies

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All too often, people fear the unknown. In the realm of healthcare, this is especially true. Part of receiving care at a hospital or clinic is getting quality consultation about procedures, medication and better living practices. Colonoscopies are no different. If a person is approaching 50 years of age, it’s time to start thinking about scheduling a colonoscopy. However, many people in this age range put it off. Using this guide is a step in the right direction.

Travis Swartz, DO, has spent a great deal of his career performing this procedure, helping hundreds stave off colon cancer. According to Dr. Swartz, the main reason people avoid a colonoscopy is embarrassment. They think being sedated and having an endoscope inserted into their rectum is an invasion of privacy with outcomes not worth the hassle. This belief is simply not true. Although it is not a fun activity, screening is a great tool to discover cancer.

A step-by-step guide

A great way of reducing anxiety is to break things down into pieces. Dr. Swartz has put together a guide to coloscopies at Tri-County Health Care. It covers everything from the initial consultation to discharge.

Travis Swartz, DO, wants you to take steps toward better colorectal health.

Travis Swartz, DO

  • According to the Mayo Clinic, a person should receive a colonoscopy around 50. Follow-up colonoscopies will depend on a patient’s risk for cancer.
  • Typically, a primary care provider discusses a colonoscopy during an appointment. If they don’t, ask about it. An active approach is the best way to prevent colon cancer.
  • The procedure usually takes place about a week after scheduling.
  • There is preparation to do before a colonoscopy. Cleansing the colon is the most difficult aspect of the process. A patient will need to consume around a gallon of liquid mixed with a medicine that will force bowel movements.
  • Avoid red or blue liquids because they create issues with the imaging equipment.
  • You will get a confirmation call before the appointment.
  • After check-in, you are brought to a private room and to meet with the surgeon. Shortly after, patients meet with the anesthetist.
  • The patient goes back to the colonoscopy suite. In the suite, a surgeon, a reporter and an assistant will complete the procedure.
  • The patient is sedated during a colonoscopy. The actual procedures takes around 30 minutes. The entire process takes around three to four hours.
  • After, the patient returns to the private room. The patient enjoys a meal and sent home.


Technology, colonoscopies have come a long way. The screening only takes a few hours. The patient goes home the same day with no special instruction for recovery. According to Dr. Swartz, patients are usually very tired from being up most of the night. Most go immediately home to enjoy a nice nap.

Tri-County Health Care offers multiple colon cancer screening options. Visit for more information about screenings. Call 218-631-3510 to schedule.

Mind, body and spirit: Dr. Lindblom

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What is osteopathic medicine?

Osteopathic medicine focuses on the body as a unified system. To truly help someone, an osteopathic doctor will treat the whole person, not just the symptoms. This approach is a more holistic form of care that emphasizes the connection of mind, body and spirit. This form of care primarily uses physical manipulation of the musculoskeletal system, but the overall outcome depends on the patient living a healthier life.

The mind, body and spirt are treated collectively in osteopathic medicine.

John Lindblom, DO

John Lindblom, DO, has dedicated his life to the pursuit of improving the lives of others from the ground up. His style of care is as unique as his discipline. Meeting with Dr. Lindblom for the first time goes beyond simple evaluation and measurements. Osteopathic medicine is about the whole body, the mind, and the spirit that guides it. During an initial meeting with Dr. Lindblom, he gets to know the whole you.

“I love taking things apart and putting them together. In high school, my desire to help people steered me toward medicine. My hands-on nature and my drive to help others came together with osteopathic medicine.” – Dr. Lindblom

Osteopathic medicine health treats the whole body, including the mind and spirit.

John Lindblom, DO


A core tenant of osteopathic medicine is prevention. Treating the mind, body and spirit is about building a person up to stave off illness in the future. Dr. Lindblom is all about helping you today so that you can be healthy tomorrow! Regular appointments with Dr. Lindblom can assist with a wide range of ailments. Aches and pains are common reasons for scheduling an appointment, but osteopathic medicine can help with far more complex issues. In some cases, it can even prevent the need for invasive procedures.

Dr. Lindblom is from the Fergus Falls area and has a strong passion for the outdoors. He enjoys metalworking, welding and exploring the wilderness of Minnesota with his trusty metal detector.

To schedule an appointment with Dr. Lindblom, please call 218-631-3510. To learn more about our providers, please visit and follow Tri-County Health Care on social media for regular updates.