Thursday, August 16, 2012

4 Things They Don't Tell You About Colonoscopy Preparation

Colonoscopy.  Even the word makes me shudder.  Not the actual colonoscopy, but the prep.  For those of you who have ever had one, you know what I’m talking about.  I see you nodding your heads furiously. 
This past spring I was booked for a Colonscopy and Gastroscopy (for those of you who don't know, a Gastroscopy is basically the same thing, except down your throat) by my GI specialist.  I sat there innocently as he told me about the procedures, not really sure what these two things entailed.  After my general appointment I went to the pharmacy to pick up the prep drinks I needed for my procedures the following month – a small bottle of laxative and 4L of colon cleanser (I kid you not, I am dry heaving as I’m writing this just thinking about the taste).

Doctors don’t tell you how to prep for the prep and innocent people are fooled daily…LOL…so here I am to help the needy. 

WARNING: If you are easily offended by talking about butts, anus, colon, and shit, this is not the post for you!

4 Things they don’t tell you about Colonoscopy preparation:

1.  The prep drinks taste like shit.  No, actually it tastes like shit, poison, 
     barf, and mucus all mixed together with the "lemon-lime" flavor it is  
     supposed to taste like.  I'm not going to sugar coat it.  It is NASTY.  
     Drink flavoured tea.  This is a big life saver here.  I made an enormous
     pot of strong flavoured tea and kept that baby close by.  Chug as much of
     the cleanser as you can and then chase it with the tea.  You are allowed
     clear liquids, and tea is one of them.

2.  Get moisturized wet wipes.  Your ass is going to feel like it’s been blow 
     torched, beaten, and rubbed raw.  You know that chant “liar liar pants on 
     fire” (with the little picture of a boy with his butt on fire)?  I have a theory
     that Colonoscopy’s are karma for all people who have ever lied.  I don’t    
     care if you feel like a baby, get the freakin wipes.  They will feel 
     like nirvana on your asshole. 
     Also, ask your doctor for some kind of cream to put on your anus.   
     Something to soothe the feeling that your anus is going to burn, shrivel, 
     and fall off.

3.  Don’t plan anything.  Put on your granny panties and the most 
     dangerously ugly t-shirt you own and get ready to relax.  And pants? 
     You don't need pants.
     Don’t do laundry, don’t have a friend over, don’t make meals for your
     family, and by all means, don’t leave your house - even for a second. 
     made the mistake of going out to my car to grab a pair of shoes (yes, I
     keep shoes in my car….who knows when a girl is going to need a teal pair
     of 4 inch stilettos??).  Yep.  Don’t do that.  I’ve never run so fast in my 
     entire life.  Into the house, through the hallway and right into the
     bathroom, where my boyfriend’s cousin was showering.  There is nothing
     better than a Colonoscopy preparation to help you get to know your
     roommates better.  If you are scared to burp, fart, shit, and piss in front
     of anyone, you better get used to it.

4.  You don’t have to drink it all.  The doctor will tell you that you have to 
     drink every last little bit of the cleanser, but this is not necessarily true.  
     As long as the liquid that is coming out is clear, you are good to go. 
     only drank about 1/3 of the cleanser when I started throwing it up.   
     At that time, everything that was coming out of my rear was clear (baha! 
     A rhyme!) so I stopped drinking the cleanser.

The actual Colonoscopy and Gastroscopy weren’t bad at all.  With the help of drugs, I don’t remember a thing.  After the procedure, and after I’d slept off the drugs for about an hour, my GI doc came to talk to me about the results.

“All clear, no sign of Crohn’s or any inflammation.”

Wait…what?????  I don’t have Crohn’s?

”No ma’am, but I did take a few biopsies so we will get back to you about the results in a few weeks.”

I didn’t want to announce on my blog that I don’t have Crohn’s until I knew exactly what was going on.  Yesterday was my appointment with my specialist to talk about the results of the biopsies.   He showed me pictures of my colon and rectum (And I have to say, it was quite wonderful looking) and showed me exactly where the camera went. 

I am all clear of Celiac disease, Crohn’s disease, and Colitis.  I guess I was sort of relieved, but also very confused.  How do you diagnose someone with Crohn’s (through an x-ray) and then say, “Ooops! Just kidding!”  We discussed my symptoms for awhile longer and came to the conclusion that I have IBS and am gluten intolerant. 

Nothing will be changing about my blog.  I still have bowel problems and I still don’t eat gluten.  I still struggle with the same symptoms and I still have the same results when I eat gluten or when I don’t eat gluten.  I am a huge believer in the mind blowing changes that a gluten-free diet can have and I’m still here to provide you with knowledge and recipes regarding this matter.


  1. OMG Ashley!I nearly peed my pants laughing...sorry, totally at your expense!! I can safely say i will NEVER request one no mattter how crappy i feel! If i'm forced i will be dragging you along for the ride!

  2. Ashley, wow what a very honest post regarding this nasty procedure. I've had a sigmoidoscopy (half a colonoscopy) and I agree with you 100%. So not fun, and way more attention than i'd have ever wanted for my anus. BLECH! You remain my favorite writer.