I'm very new to this thread, and haven't read all the way through it. So if this has been covered, my apologies.
I think it's a good idea to have your colon checked out but share your concerns about the procedure. Colon cancer is very preventable if checked and caught early.
An alternative to an invasive colonoscopy is a DNA test of stool sample. I've been following a company and their development of this procedure which is now FDA approved. The test is called "cologuard". You can read about it on the company's website. Company is "exact sciences." They developed the test working with the Mayo clinic.
So ask your doctor, see if your insurance covers this. You'd get a kit sent to you in the mail. Poop in a bucket, seal it up and ship it off to a lab. Non-invasive and detects cancer or pre-cancer. If positive for either then you'd get the "scope".
It's covered by some insurance but not all. Look at their stock price; it has tracked up recently as the test is getting more use.
Cologard can detect cancer or pre-cancerous polyps. But just not at 100% rate, and is not considered as good as colonoscopy (although I am unaware of any head-to-head randomized trials).
It appears to miss about 8% of cancers and about 60% of advanced precancerous polyps. So, at this point, it is NOT a equivalent substitute for a colonoscopy. Its role at this point seems to be best for persons who cannot, or will not, have a colonoscopy as a screening exam. Colon cancer screening rates are only just a little above 50% for the eligible population. Cologard may help this.
At this point, it is best to think of it as a second-tier test which when the better first line cannot, or will not, be used. It's better than the newer generation Fecal Blood testing (FIT).
Knowing this, I have opted for colonoscopy for myself recently (second one, never any polyps, so that tells you that I'm an old dog).