This isn't going to be entertaining, but if it helps anybody who is scheduled for a colonoscopy, then it's worth it.
I am not a physician, and this is not medical advice, but a few tips that helped make the process and procedure a little easier on my body.
I am 59, and having had some digestive issues, my doctor recommended a colonoscopy. I spoke with five people who I know have been through the
process, and I was unnerved by their memories of it. All five used phrases like "liquid fire", "horrific cramping". My doctor said to follow the
prep procedure, and I shouldn't have any problems, although he noted that frequently people did experience discomfort. hmmmm. In medical terms,
"discomfort" sometimes translates to pain.
I read a lot, and the more I read on blogs from people who had been through the prep process, the more I was determined to avoid "liquid fire coming
out of me for hours". Don't fear -- I won't get much more TMI than that.
The cleansing solution that is required the night before the procedure REALLY works well, however if it is cleaning remaining food from your system,
it appears to work you body harder than is necessary.
My experience was that the prep wasn't bad at all and the prep solution wasn't nearly as wretched and horrible tasting as I'd been lead to believe.
1. Four days prior to the procedure, I went on a soup diet. Thin, soft, soups, nothing very hearty, but more than just broth. I drank lots of
2. Two days before the procedure, I began eating only clear broth, in my case homemade chicken broth with very little seasoning, and continued
drinking more water than my usual intake. I also stopped drinking any alcohol; I don't know if this affected the process, but it seemed like it
3. I had been advised by my doctor to not ingest or drink red or purple liquids, as those can temporarily stain the colon and make the process more
difficult for your doctor.
4. The day before the procedure, I was pretty hungry, and acquired some prepared foods that I thought I might want after the procedure. I also
acquired flushable baby wipes and vaseline (petroleum jelly).
5. The afternoon before the procedure, I mixed the first of four packets of the bowel prep solution, and refrigerated it. The solution tastes
awful, like salty vanilla. Chilling it wasn't nearly as bad. I was told I could add clear, flavored liquids but didn't. Note: My colonoscopy was
in the morning; if an afternoon appointment, it is sometimes advised to split the packets between the night before and the morning of. Check with
6. The vaseline was used as a protected coating for the anticipated *cough* ........ affected area. Use it often. I drank the solution as
prescribed; the entire process took about six hours.
7. Think of the flushable baby wipes as baby "pats". 'Nuff said.
8. I drank regular water along with the prep solution. I didn't experience any burning and certainly no "liquid fire", and was very relieved at
how easy it was. I believe that going to a liquid diet earlier than suggested is the primary reason for this.
Things you doctor may not tell you:
1. Even after your emissions are clear liquid, they will still likely be yellow. This is apparently due to bile staining.
2. After your colon and bowels are clean, you will likely still create and emit a lot of gas. This continued even the next day, right up until the
procedure. It may be particularly noxious. There will be even more after the procedure, as they blow your colon up like a balloon -- that will be
3. Wear loose clothing and slip-on shoes to your appointment.
4. Don't be a pain in the ass to the medical staff. They don't like it any more than you do, and you are not the sole focus of their world, but a
player in it. I personally believe that in this situation -- as in life -- humor is an excellent balm, and is a way to express appreciation toward
the medical professionals who will be dealing with you.
5. Have most of your questions already asked and answered before the day of your procedure, but if you think of others, don't hesitate to ask. For
example, I wanted to know where my Darlin' was going to wait for me, and how soon I would be accessible to her.
6. Much as you feel fine mentally after the procedure, you are not fit to drive for several hours. Makes sure the person who is waiting for you has
something to occupy themselves with, and carrying a snack in case they get hungry.
7. Be patient after the procedure. Your medical professionals will expect you to pass a lot of gas and be mostly in your right mind before you
leave the hospital. You may be fed something light while you are still in the hospital. If so, eat it and thank them for it.
8. If you are a large or tall person, ask for a large backless dress (gown). Some hospitals have the notion of "one size fits all". I have almost
no personal modesty, but I imagine a few folk suffered from the view.
Just before the sedative was administered, I said to the doctor, anesthesiologist and nurses: "I want you all to promise me that my posterior won't
end up on youtube or Facebook." They all laughed and it eased the mood for all of us. Just before I went under, my doctor leaned in and said, "you
forgot to mention SnapChat".
I don't remember any of it. There are different levels of sedation available, and mine was "conscious
sedation", however I regained awareness in the OR, after the procedure was finished. It took about an hour.
No discomfort for me after the procedure nor the days after that. I had no physical indication that anything had been done. All that worry for
For a hilarious view of the process, please see SpartanKingLeonidas' thread -- Colonoscopies
Aren't Just for Fun Anymore
. Just don't take it to heart. Trust me, no more than six feet of camera is inserted.
edit on 31/8/16 by argentus because: (no reason given)
edit on 31/8/16 by argentus because: added the backless dress