Colon Therapy, Colon Hydrotherapy, Colonics: FSA Eligibility
What is colon therapy, colon hydrotherapy, colonics?
Colon therapy, colon hydrotherapy and colonics, also known as colon cleansing, are a series of terms that encompass a wide variety of alternative treatments that are designed to detoxify the colon and intestinal tract. While this treatment is typically performed in advance of a colonoscopy, colon therapy proponents believe that regular colon cleansing can prevent a wide variety of potential health problems, including asthma, allergies and arthritis, as well as boosting one's energy levels and overall immune system (Hippocrates Health Institute).
During a colon cleanse procedure, a tube is inserted into the rectum and large amounts of water (up to 16 gallons) are flushed through the colon, and at times smaller amounts of water are used and left to sit in this area briefly before being flushed out afterwards. The inclusion of this water will bring about a state of peristalsis, which causes the muscles in the colon to contract and push feces and other materials into the hose where they can be disposed of. Some colon cleanses may also include other substances like herbs or coffee that are filtered through the system.
Proponents of colon cleansing believe that the buildup of fecal matter in the colon can negatively affect an individual's health by preventing the absorption of water and other nutrients, regular constipation, the overgrowth of harmful colon bacteria and yeast and the possible absorption of toxins into the bloodstream. As such, supporters of regular colon cleansing believe this frequent clearing of the gastrointestinal tract can result in lasting health benefits (National Center for Biotechnology Information).
However, because further research is needed to prove the efficacy of regular colon cleanses, it's important to check with a primary care doctor first to ensure that any health issues a patient wishes to treat with colon cleanses are not the result of medications or more serious issues like kidney or heart disease. It's also vital that individuals seeking a colon cleanse look into the ingredients that are used and in what amounts to prevent any chance of long-term health problems. If a physician believes that colon cleanses could be beneficial to treat a legitimate medical issue, a Letter of Medical Necessity (LMN) will be required for FSA, HSA and HRA reimbursement.