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Thread: colonoscopy

  1. #1

    colonoscopy

    I realize colonoscopy and prep for it are the subject of a number of threads and I have been reading them.
    I'm a T6 complete paraplegic and going in for colonoscopy later this month. I will be admitted day before for 23 hour stay but havent heard any more about what they are planning for me. Its a relatively small local hospital and I doubt they have much SCI experience.
    How does the prep routine work? What do SCI people do even when in the hospital? Do you have to sit on the commode seat for six hours? (or 8 or 10?) How does skin tolerate this? Once done with procedure and on the way home is there any danger of further discharge?
    The whole thing doesnt sound good to me but they don't seem worried.

  2. #2
    You will need to start the special diet at least one day prior to your admission to the hospital. Your physician should provide you instructions on this. As soon as you arrive at the hospital, you will need to start the special prep (start it sooner than they usually instruct, which is often 5PM). We start at 1PM. This may be something like Golytely, which is a large amount to drink in a fairly short time. It is nasty. Mix in some ginger ale or other soda that you don't esp. like (it will ruin you for that soda for the future).

    A bedside commode is good for evacuation, but don't spend long hours there. We generally pad up the bed well and have the person evacuate there (NO BED PANS!!!). The nursing staff check regularly and clean you up every hour or so. It is not pleasant, but better than trying to do this at home by yourself. In the AM, we give small volume Fleets enema, and then you are off to the procedure (ask to be first on the schedule if possible). As soon as you wake up from the sedation you can go home (someone will need to take you home, you will not be allowed to drive). Then you are free to eat a regular meal.

    During the day before and the day you are at the hospital also do your regular bowel care procedure.

    (KLD)

  3. #3
    I have had several colonoscopies and have developed this dietary routine in preparation.
    3-4 days before the colonoscopy, I eat light meals containing white meat chicken without skin, boiled or baked potatoes without skin, eggs, steamed or poached or grilled fish and clear soups. Then 2 days before the colonoscopy, stop all solid foods and go on a strictly clear liquid diet which would include water, plain tea and coffee (no milk, cream, creamer or sugar), clear fruit juice like apple and white grape juice (avoid red or purple colored juices), chicken, beef, vegetable broth, ginger ale, sports drinks like Gatorade (not red) popcicles (not red or orange) and jello (not red or orange). Then start the chemical preparation as directed by your doctor, no later than 2:00 PM the day before the procedure.

    You probably won't experience any "accidents" after the colonoscopy. You will be given a little time, usually about an hour to recover from the sedation before you are released to go home. Plan on relaxing at home the rest of the day. Don't plunge right into a "regular" meal. Take it easy with food after the colonscopy, i.e., don't stop off on your way home from the hospital for burgers, fries, pizza, mexican food etc. Stick with basics like lean chicken, bananas, applesauce, whole wheat bread/toast for the rest of the day. Then start the next day, resume a high fiber diet (I include daily Metamucil). You may also want to take one of the over the counter probiotic preparations like Pearls, Florastor, Colon Health, etc to help to re-establish healthy colon flora. I have found that I am ready to resume bowel programs two days after the colonoscopy. That is, if I have the colonoscopy on Tuesday morning, I am ready for a bowel program on Thursday night.

    Good luck and congratulations on taking the proactive step of getting routine colonoscopies. I have an able bodied friend who just started chemotherapy last week after recovering from surgery. She was diagnosed with stage 3 colon cancer after not heeding the doctor's advice of having the procedure in 5 years from the prior one she had.

    All the best,
    GJ

  4. #4
    Regarding starting with the prep potion earlier than normal, how long will the process probably take? Does it take longer with SCI or is the start just delayed?

    With drinking a large volume will I probably have to cath frequently or will it all pass out my rectum?

    Once I have been how long without passing any more can I figure I'm done?

    Lying on the bed with pads while large volumes pass out sounds pretty horrible.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie67 View Post
    Regarding starting with the prep potion earlier than normal, how long will the process probably take? Does it take longer with SCI or is the start just delayed?

    With drinking a large volume will I probably have to cath frequently or will it all pass out my rectum?

    Once I have been how long without passing any more can I figure I'm done?

    Lying on the bed with pads while large volumes pass out sounds pretty horrible.
    It just takes longer in SCI. NL (my wife) has had several colonoscopies too, and she is done with the prep in 3-4 hours. On the other hand, it takes me 6-8 hours.
    You will know when you are done when the fluid you expel is clear. That is not to say it will look like water, it will have a brown tint, but it won't have any solids in it and be relatively clear. If you are having the prep done in the hospital, the nurses will know when you are finished.
    You probably won't have to cath as often as you might imagine. I think the first couple times, I wore a foley catheter during the prep and through the colonoscopy. The last time, I didn't wear a foley, and did not have to cath during the entire prep process.
    Personally, I can't even imagine doing the prep while lying in bed. Clean up would be a nightmare and messy, not to mention a pretty degrading experience. I also think you would have to be especially careful not to introduce feces into the urethra for fear of causing a bladder infection. This may be more of a problem for women since the urethra is shorter than in men. We covered the floor in the bedroom with a large sheet of painter's plastic. I began drinking the colyte, what are the instructions...I think, 8 ounce glass every 30 minutes. After about 4 glasses, I began to get some feelings of urgency and a little autonomia.
    I transferred onto the commode chair. We have two catch tubs for the chair. One was always underneath me as the other one was being emptied and cleaned. We also taped a large pad ("chucks") across the back and a bit around the sides of the chair (below the seat) to prevent "blow out." As I continued to drink the colyte, I could transfer back into bed (protected by lots of "chucks") for a few minutes in between episodes of bowel movement. I recognize that everyone will react differently, but this has been my experience with each prep I have done.

    Hope this helps and good luck.

    All the best,
    GJ

  6. #6
    I haven't tried it yet but I got a Roho toilet seat pad which is hopefully going to increase the time my butt can tolerate sitting on the throne.
    Can't say I'm looking forward to it. Thank you for the advice

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie67 View Post
    I haven't tried it yet but I got a Roho toilet seat pad which is hopefully going to increase the time my butt can tolerate sitting on the throne.
    Can't say I'm looking forward to it. Thank you for the advice
    The Roho toilet seat pad may help a lot. Give it a couple trial runs before you rely on it for the prep. Do you use the Roho on a toilet or on a commode chair? As I see it the tricky thing with using a toilet as opposed to a commode chair is getting to the toilet quickly...like immediately...as in right now i.e., you would need to transfer from bed to wheelchair, wheel to the toilet and transfer to the toilet when the need arises, rather than having the commode chair bedside and being able to transfer from bed to commode chair.

    All the best,
    GJ

  8. #8
    Just to let you know my perspective is that while the prep is not fun, it is not as bad as you might imagine it to be. That is not to say that it is a picnic - but ......
    Hopefully, when you are done, you will have peace of mind.
    CKF

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by SCI-Nurse View Post
    Just to let you know my perspective is that while the prep is not fun, it is not as bad as you might imagine it to be. That is not to say that it is a picnic - but ......
    Hopefully, when you are done, you will have peace of mind.
    CKF
    So sorry to disagree...but colonoscopy prep for a person with SCI (and their caregiver) is a b****!!!! Been there done that 4 times!!!!!! You just have to grit your teeth and bear it....it is a necessary evil!!!!

    GJ

  10. #10
    I'll post on that when I have informed opinion next week

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