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Colonoscopy FAQs

What if I have major medical changes between the time I schedule my procedure and procedure dates?

Please notify our nursing staff as soon as possible so we can make any adjustments to new medications or change your prep if necessary. If you are having heart issues, you may need to delay your scheduled procedure until your cardiologist feels it’s safe.

What if I accidentally take my vitamins within seven days of my procedure?

If you take potassium or folic acid with your prescription medications, please continue to take them. If you take multivitamins by accident, just don’t take any more. If you are taking an iron pill, you may need to reschedule your procedure because it will leave black tar on your colon wall.

What do you mean by clear liquids?

If you put liquid in a clear glass, hold it up to the light and see a newspaper through it, then it is considered clear. It cannot have any solids or pulp in it whatsoever.

Do I need to drink all of my laxative preparation given to me?

Yes, it is very important for you to drink all of your laxative so we can see any polyps or abnormal tissue. The laxative materials you are asked to swallow or drink can make you slightly queasy for a few minutes, but not much more. Preparation for a colonoscopy is certainly inconvenient, but is well worth the possibility of preventing colon cancer.

What if I can’t find anyone to drive me home after my procedure?

By law we cannot release you from our Endoscopy Center if you do not have a ride home. You cannot ride a bus or walk home, but you can take a taxi or use medical transport if you absolutely can not find someone to give you a ride.

Our doctors prefer you have someone in the waiting area during and after your procedure. The doctor needs someone to speak with regarding your release instructions and any complications that may arise. The sedation we give you can cause slight amnesia, so you may not remember anything.

Please Note

One week before your procedure DO NOT eat non-fat products containing olean or olestra. These leave a thick film on your colon wall making your colonoscopy very difficult.

Helpful Hints

You should coat your rectum with Vaseline or Desitin before you start drinking your laxative to help with irritation. Reapply after every bowel movement. You may also want to purchase moist bathroom wipes or Tucks wipes to help with irritation in between bowel movements.

Our doctors highly recommend drinking Gatorade or Powerade the day before your laxative prep and during your prep to prevent dehydration. However, DO NOT drink any liquid with red color.