This is an endoscopic examination of the large bowel (colon) and terminal ileum. This test is used to distinguish between irritable bowel and more serious conditions such as cancer, polyps or inflammatory bowel disease.
Prior to colonoscopy the bowel needs to be cleansed. This is done through a low fibre diet for 1-2 days and then drinking the bowel preparation (moviprep). This is a 2 litre drink. It is salty and slightly flavoured. (link to another page - how to take my bowel preparation). This preparation is difficult to drink but will clean the bowel very well and improves the accuracy of the test.
This procedure can be painful especially if you suffer from an irritable bowel. We offer a strong painkiller and a sedative if desired. Pain is very variable. Some have no pain and others must have medication to ease the discomfort. We use Fentanyl a very fast, potent and non-drowsy painkiller. The approach is tailored to your wishes and can be changed during the procedure if you wish.
The procedure takes 30-45 minutes. If we take biopsies they are painless. If you have a polyp we may remove it if it is safe to do so.
Recovery time is dependant on whether sedation is given. Without sedation you may leave immediately but most people chose to stay for some food, as by now hunger will have set in.
Results are provided prior to departure and a follow-up is arranged. Treatment may be advised at this point.