Our first concern is your health and safety. You will be given sedatives to help you relax during your colonoscopy, and these medications affect your body’s ability to hold food and liquid in your stomach. If you eat or drink several hours before (actual time varies by doctor) your colonoscopy, there is a risk that food or liquid will travel up into your esophagus, where you could breathe it into your lungs. Your procedure will be re-scheduled, if you do not follow the instructions provided by your doctor.
Please follow all instructions and make every effort to drink all of the solution. The height and weight of a patient does not determine the amount of solution needed to purge your colon. Remember, we are trying to clean out your entire digestive tract. If your colon is not clean, the physician cannot do a thorough exam. You may have to reschedule your test for another day.
If you develop symptoms of nausea or vomiting, stop the prep for a few minutes, then resume the process. Go slower and drink one 8 oz. glass every 30 minutes instead of 15 minutes. If you were not able to complete the prep, please call the Your Patient Advisor at (800) 349 0285
The laxatives should take effect within three hours. However, in some cases, it may not take effect until all the laxatives are taken. Please continue to finish your preparation as per the instructions provided, even if you do not have any bowel movement.
While preparing for a colonoscopy all solids must be emptied from your gastrointestinal tract, by following a clear liquid diet the day before your procedure (in some rare cases 2-3 days before the procedure) . A clear liquid consists of drinks that you can "see through”.
Please note that some doctors may allow full liquids, refer to your instructions for a list of liquids you can drink the day before the procedure.
Studies have shown that if the some of the laxative is taken 6 hours before the procedure, it leads to a cleaner colon. This minimizes your chances of having to reschedule your procedure or repeat your procedure sooner than the recommended guidelines (typically every 5-10 years).
Yes. However, fiber can clog the colonoscope and they do not pass through your digestive system easily. Presence of any solids in your colon will make it difficult to for your physician to view and remove polyps that maybe present. Please avoid fiber rich foods and stop taking fiber supplements two days before your procedure.
Please cut down on heavy solid foods TWO (2) days before the procedure and start introducing lighter meals to your diet. Following these guidelines is not required, but they will make it easier to empty your bowel before the procedure.
RECOMMENDED FOODS: The following food suggestions are a good part of your diet two days before your procedure:
- Light meat that is easily digestible such as chicken (without the skin)
- Potatoes without skin
- A light meal of steamed white fish
FOODS NOT RECOMMENDED: The following foods are not recommended because they are high in fiber:
- Red Meats
- Brown Rice
- Raw Vegetables like salads
- Dairy based products like cheese
Please resist the temptation to eat a heavy dinner two days before your procedure, even though you will not be eating any solid foods the following day.
Colors with heavy dyes can limit the ability for the gastroenterologist to get a clear picture of the inside of the colon. Typically, blue, red, purple, and orange colors are not allowed. Please refer to your directions for specific color restrictions.
To ensure a most successful prep it can be helpful to limit hard to digest foods a few days prior to the procedure. These foods may include: raw vegetables, red meat, dairy, foods high in fiber, nuts and seeds.
You should begin having bowel movements within 3-5 hours of beginning your prep. If you are having regular, loose stools the prep is working. The bowel movements should continue to get looser, and will eventually be watery and clear.