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Colonoscopy?
Old 07-25-2019, 08:53 AM
  #1

Ugh. I am 50 now and my doctor wants me to schedule a colonoscopy. She swears itís not as bad as I think. I donít wanna! Not ready for this level of adulting.


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I understand
Old 07-25-2019, 09:01 AM
  #2

I have had three now. The meds they have you take to prep are actually better than the ones I used the first time.

The prep is the only bad part. Have lots of activities to distract you. TV binge, books and magazines to read, jigsaw puzzle...... Just need to be close to the bathroom.

After the procedure I always feel fine and go out to eat breakfast. Schedule it for as early as possible in the morning would be my advice.

I have never had any uncomfortable feelings afterwards. Hopefully they won't find any polyps and you won't have to do it again for 10 years. They always find at least one polyp on me so I have to go every five years. But it is still a good preventative measure.
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Itís important
Old 07-25-2019, 09:26 AM
  #3

The 50 colonoscopy is very important and should not be skipped. Good for you for adulting!

I prepped my digestive system a bit about a week before having to cleanse it all. I avoided meats and other hard to digest foods. I think it helped make the cleanse a little easier.
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It's time for mine, too.
Old 07-25-2019, 09:27 AM
  #4

Do some checking. Here in Baton Rouge, there's a huge hospital for women. It's where our babies are delivered and for any female type issues, it's the place to go.

There's a local gastro (female) who does colonoscopies at this hospital and the setting is much more private and geared to women. You're in your own private room - not just behind a curtain.

There might be something similar where you live.
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Just do it
Old 07-25-2019, 09:33 AM
  #5

I bought depends so I could walk away from the bathroom without fear.

I had no issues after. You can do this!


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colonoscopy
Old 07-25-2019, 09:49 AM
  #6

I've had two, one recently. The first one seemed to be worse, maybe because I didn't know what to expect. Add flavoring to the "drink" you need to take and put it in the fridge, makes it a little more palatable. Being near a bathroom is a must!
For the first one, I had horrible stomach pains after and just slept when I got home.
The 2nd one, I was ravenous and we went for burgers after.
The procedure itself is nothing, it's the prep that is difficult.
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Thereís a good side
Old 07-25-2019, 10:12 AM
  #7

I look at it as guilt-free relaxation for a day (or two&#128535
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Dreading it
Old 07-25-2019, 10:22 AM
  #8

I have been dreading it since I learned of these when I was probably a college student. I am 48. I would rather go to the OB/GYN and that is saying a lot!!
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My DH had one today.
Old 07-25-2019, 10:29 AM
  #9

Like other posters said, the worst part is the day before when you have to prep for it. My DH was starving by late morning. A liquid diet was a challenge for him. The prep. medicine drink wasn't bad at all. I think it was called Clenpiq and it was cranberry flavored. The procedure was scheduled for 11:00 and I was told to bring the car up to the door by 12:00. Afterwards, we stopped for lunch where he had a pretzal, Philly cheesesteak and salad. When we got close to home he asked me to stop at McDonald's for a sausage burrito and coffee.
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Old 07-25-2019, 10:48 AM
  #10

It really is no biggie, except for the cost. I just got the bill yesterday. It was almost $7000 but my copay was only $290. Before I was on Medicare my copay was about $2000. I was quite surprised when I received that bill.

Just park yourself in the bathroom with all your distractions and you'll be fine. As soon as you finish the first drink go to the bathroom. The medicine works quickly. If you have gentle face/hand wipes with aloe, or some other moisturizers keep them close by.

Just don't be surprised at what happens if you eat green Jello!


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Very important
Old 07-25-2019, 11:05 AM
  #11

procedure. Have it done. If you have no issues, you don't need another one for 10 years.
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Easy
Old 07-25-2019, 11:54 AM
  #12

The prep is the worst part. I would stay close to the potty. I've been fortunate to be first and awake and out by noon. DH go out to eat on the way home.
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Mine was supposed
Old 07-25-2019, 01:39 PM
  #13

to be today but I had to reschedule it to next week. I have heard the procedure itself isn't bad, just the prep. Can't wait!
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Tomorrow...
Old 07-25-2019, 01:52 PM
  #14

The dreaded drink is about to begin.
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Old 07-25-2019, 02:47 PM
  #15

Quote:
Schedule it for as early as possible in the morning would be my advice.
Well, I have to argue with that point only because my dr and I think most have you drink 2 cleansers 6 hours apart. So I had to get up at 3am to drink the cleanser in order to have my colonscopy at 9am. (It had to be 6 hours before procedure) So If you schedule it for 12 noon, then getting up at 6am is better than 3am.
Procedure was nothing... Prep wasn't bad but you MUST stay right near a toilet. The urge to "go" has no warning. (but I guess that depends on the prep)
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Old 07-25-2019, 03:10 PM
  #16

I have had to do two in two years (ugh - found polyps) and I have to go again in 1-2 years. But better than the alternative as colon cancer runs in my family. I had a better time with the prep the first time. I'm not gonna lie - the prep is bad. I had a hard time going 24 hours without solid food and also without coffee the morning of. I ended up with a migraine. But the procedure itself is fine - you won't feel a thing or remember a thing.
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Another tip
Old 07-25-2019, 03:45 PM
  #17

Someone else shared this tip on another thread and it helped me. Use very cold water and a straw. I'm not sure why the straw made it easier but it does.
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Old 07-25-2019, 04:40 PM
  #18

It's really not as bad as you're anticipating. I just had my 2nd one in June. My dad died of colon cancer, so I had to start early. The prep is really not too bad, especially if you eat light for a few days ahead of time. The worst for me was the special prep liquid I had to drink had an artificial cherry flavor. I hate cherry flavored anything! I had to mix it with water & drink one dose the night before & a second dose in the morning before the procedure. I barely choked down the 16 oz. first dose. by the time I was halfway through dose 2, I was gagging like crazy. I had the brilliant thought to add more water to dilute the flavor...Nope! Nothing tasted any different, but now I had a whole container to finish instead of half!
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Colonoscopy
Old 07-25-2019, 04:55 PM
  #19

Everyone has to do this. If the alternative is colon cancer, is that preferable? Just get over it and get it done.
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Old 07-25-2019, 04:59 PM
  #20

I have had two and at least here, they give you a medication that puts you out for about 20 minutes or so. When you wake up you are not allowed to drive for 24 hours, but there are no side effects and you feel pretty alert. The prep is the worst, but insist on either Gatorade mixed with Miralax or the newest one (not sure what its called).

Good luck!

Nancy
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Old 07-25-2019, 06:10 PM
  #21

Do you have an IV? That is one thing I absolutely can’t stand. I know- better than cancer. I am just having a good whine.
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Yes
Old 07-26-2019, 08:25 PM
  #22

Yes, you need an IV. I always hate that part because I have terrible veins and could tell you horror stories. HOWEVER...I was diagnosed with colon cancer at age 47. My only symptom was a five day stomachache. My surgeon said I didn't fit "the mold" because I was under 50, had no family history, and had no other symptoms than a tummy ache. It turns out that Lucifer (my tumor...yes, I named it) was the size of a golf ball and it had obstructed my colon. That backed up everything that I ate, and that's what made my stomach hurt. I had surgery and he took out Lucifer and 15" of my colon. I was left with a colostomy, went through chemo, then had surgery to have my colostomy reversed six months after the original surgery. My surgeon would not let me go to work for almost the entire school year, so I ran out of sick days and had to start paying my own insurance. In addition to all that, we were in the midst of building a new home and moved in a week after my colostomy take-down. That surgery was rougher than the cancer surgery.

My surgeon told me that it takes about eight years for a polyp to grow into a tumor.

Good luck with your colonoscopy!
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Do it :)
Old 07-27-2019, 03:36 AM
  #23

Colon cancer is a sneaky bish, and now is not considered an old person cancer anymore. I seen people in between 12 to 30 being diagnosed with it. Young, healthy, I haven't beat on my body with crud life style choices people.

Also colon cancer has the nasty habit of spreading to the liver and lungs. So then you are trying to tamp all that mess out with chemo, radiation and surgery.

I've had three colonoscopy starting at age 40. A whole bunch of pre cancerous polyps removed. I had my DD at 39, so you know what motivated me to get it done.

My best suggestion is gradually taper your diet down to full liquids just before you have to do the clear liquids and the prep. I didn't have the gas and pain doing that. I make homemade chicken stock strained through an cheese cloth I could rotated savory and sweet. Do NOT use anything you like to drink to mix the prep solution with. I still can't drink canned lemonade.

Chill the prep in the fridge and use a straw. The straw helps cut down the gag reflex. Lol.. I sucked butterscotch disk candies in between to get the taste out of my mouth

If you do everything right, you don't have to repeat for 10 years! Woot!

Pro tip: even if with a whole bunch of effort, you can't finish the prep, call the doctor/center you are having the test. They may change up what you have to do, or just cancel before you trek down there. If you aren't really cleared out, they will send you home. TMI- stool smears the scope lens and the doctor can't see zip. My FIL lied (internally screaming) about finishing the prep. He didn't (because he didn't feel like it), and he was 5 minutes in the endo room before they wheeled him out.

Good times...

You got this! It's gross because it's butt stuff, but 2 days of aggravation is so worth piece of mind.

ETA: you will have an IV, unless you are my crazy Navy dad who did it with nothing. You can do the test without sedation. People do it. I guess if you can do mind over matter and zen out...

I'm usually sleep deprived mess by then, and IVs are no big deal to me. The nurses in the endo room are usually excellent at starting IVs.

DO NOT let your self dehydrate! That amount of liquid the doctor wants down you is so you don't roll in like a desiccated frog, and they have to start digging for veins. My doctor uses Propofol for the IV sedation. By the time the RN draws it up, and starts pushing it through the port, you are out! Like awake, then boom. You wake up with no hang over like Valium or Versed.

Last edited by Tawaki; 07-27-2019 at 03:45 AM.. Reason: More info
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Old 07-27-2019, 11:05 AM
  #24

I giggled a little at your words! Good info to have, though. The propofol worries me because last year I had a total knee replacement. They do a spinal block and give you propofol. I did go to sleep, but woke up during the surgery and tried to sit up! They had to turn the juice up for me. Nobody should ever hear the sounds that I heard as they were doing the surgery.
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