Wednesday, May 07, 2008


I am pleased to report that both the upper endoscopy (esophageal) and colonoscopy went well and I am clean.

When I was doing the prep work, I tried to find some experiences of others on the web and didn't find much. So I am going to put mine out there. If you are not interested or grossed out easy, don't keep reading. No knitting content today.

Endoscopy: The prep used was as follows, 2 nights before the procedure take 2x5mg tabs of bisacodyl. The day before the procedure, take 1 sachet of Pico Salax at 3pm and another sachet at 8pm.

I was expecting rather dramatic results. The morning before the procedure I had a large bowel movement (due to the bisacodyl no doubt). Then, I didn't eat much all day as all I was allowed was clear stuff, like Jello and consomme.

At 3pm I mixed up the first sachet and chugged it. It didn't taste too bad. Kind of orange-y. The aftertaste was pretty bitter, though. So you might want to have something nearby to kill that taste.

I drank at least 8 ounces of water or gingerale every half hour. Not much bathroom action until around 5:30 or so. And then, not very dramatic. I was expecting much worse.

I drank the second sachet at 8pm. After an hour, then it started to kick in. Still not as dramatic as I had thoght. It did go on until about 11:30pm. At which point I went to bed. I did have to get up once in the night, but that was it. And it wasn't painful. My bum was a little raw, but it feels fine today (the next day.)

I didn't eat anything from then till after the procedure.

At the hospital, they hook you up to an IV line and dope you up. I didn't feel very stoned. the doctor had me turn onto my left side and started to feed the scope in. I could see on the tv. Kinda cool. There were a couple of places that were kinda painful, not awful, but I KNEW where the scope was, I can tell ya! Then the doctor pulled it out slowly and looked for polyps and abnormalities as he went. That was it. Not bad at all.

Upper Endoscopy: This one is to check the esophagus for cancerous changes as well. They feed a scope in your mouth and go down to take a look. They start out with you on your side and give you drugs to relax you (I had them still in me from the first procedure) and then they spray something into your mouth to numb the throat a bit. That tastes gross. Bitter. At that point a round plastic thing is put in your mouth with a hole in the middle. That lets you bite down, but they can still feed the scope in through the hole in the center. You really have to concentrate on breathing. Just to keep from gagging the whole time. You will still gag once or twice no matter how hard you try. Thankfully, that is a quick one as the esophagus isn't that long.

The good part about that is that if there are no changes in the esophagus and you are over 40, then there probably won't ever be and you don't have to wonder about esophageal cancer. Or do this test again.

And that is all folks!