FAQs

» What is the best "clear" liquid to take?

Gatorade, which comes in many flavors, is an excellent choice as it contains electrolytes such as potassium. Avoid red liquids.

» Why avoid red liquids?

The red color can persist in the colon and potentially look like blood.

» One of the medications I was instructed to take the morning of my procedure is red. Can I take it?

Medications for blood pressure, heart conditions, and seizures should be taken the morning of your exam regardless of the color.

» Is there any way that I can make this taste any better?

You can try sucking on hard candy. You can rinse your mouth with water or a mouthwash. Do not eat or drink anything while you are drinking this solution.

» I feel like vomiting. What should I do?

It is important that you take your entire prep, if at all possible. Remember that without a clean bowel, the doctor will not be able to adequately see the inside of your colon to complete the examination. If you feel like vomiting while taking the prep, slow down. Pause for about 30-45 minutes to allow your stomach to empty, and then try to resume the prep at a slower rate. If you do vomit and are unable to continue, call us and have a phone number of a pharmacy that is open, in case we need to call in a prescription.

» I already have diarrhea before taking the prep, do I still have to take the laxative?

Yes, you must take the prep as directed by your doctor. Your colon is approximately 6 feet long. The entire colon must be emptied for your physician to see the colon clearly.

» I am taking the prep and already having loose, watery stools. Do I still need the rest of the prep?

Yes, you may have solid stool higher in the colon that needs to be eliminated.

» I have finished taking the bowel prep and haven’t gone to the bathroom yet. What should I do?

Bowel movements usually start 2-3 hours after taking the prep but can take longer.

» I see yellow color in the toilet bowl and a few flecks. What do I do?

If your last bowel movements were clear enough that you were able to see the bottom of the toilet, you are should be fine. It is OK if you may have some flecks of material. The yellow color is a result of bile that normally colors the feces. This shouldn’t interfere with the examination.

» My bottom is so sore. What can I do?

To clean the area, avoid rubbing. Gently pat with a wet washcloth. Apply Vaseline™, Preparation H™, or Desitin liberally.

» Can I drink alcoholic beverages?

We strongly suggest you do not drink any alcoholic beverages prior to your procedure since they can cause dehydration and some wines may thin your blood.

» Can I chew gum or suck candy?

Yes, but nothing with soft centers or red color.

» What if I am still passing stool the morning of my test?

Take a tap water enema until you run clear. If this does not work, call the office.

» Can I brush my teeth?

Please do.

» Can I wear my dentures?

Yes, you may wear your dentures to the endoscopy suite. However, you may be asked to remove them prior to the procedure.

» I have been instructed not to take anti-inflammatories or blood thinners several days before the procedure. What can I take for headaches and pain relief?

You may take Tylenol as directed.

» Can I have chicken soup?

You can only have the broth. No noodles, chicken, or vegetables allowed.

» Can I have the colonoscopy done if I am on my menstrual period?

Yes, the procedure can still be performed. We ask that you use a tampon if possible (not absolutely necessary).

» Do I need a prescription for the laxatives?

It depends on the preparation instructions you were given. Fleet’s Phosphosoda does not require a prescription.

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