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Colonoscopy hack is a strategy for getting the best out of your colonoscopy. If you or your loved one is scheduled for a colonoscopy, these hacks can change your experience from awful to pleasant.
Colonoscopy Hack #1: Google your doctor
Google your physician: Even though there is poor correlation between physician online rating and quality of care, online information about your physician is still helpful. Is she board certified? Where did he train? How does she perform on quality measures such as completion rates (cecal intubation rate), complication rates, and the ability to detect pre-cancerous polyps (adenoma detection rate)? For additional information, read The 3 P’s of colonoscopy: Factors that determine the outcome of colonoscopy.
Colonoscopy Hack #2: Pick prime time
What is prime time is different for many people. You should pick the prime time that satisfies your health condition and circumstances.
- If you are diabetic, pick a morning appointment. This will avoid prolonged period of fasting and fluctuations in blood sugar.
- If you work late into the evenings or nights and can only be off for 1 day, consider an afternoon appointment. This gives you time to do your bowel prep.
- Pick the day and time that is convenient for the person that will take you for the procedure and take you back home.
Colonoscopy Hack #3: Split the prep
There are many medications approved by the Food and Drug Administration as bowel cleansing agents. These include Colyte®, GoLYTELY®, NuLYTELY®, TriLyte®, HalfLytely®, MoviPrep®, SUPREP®, OsmoPrep®, and Prepopik®.
Regardless of the bowel cleansing agent used, the split dose regimen has been proven in multiple studies to be the most effective way to use the medication. In the split dose regimen, half of the bowel cleansing agent is taken the evening before the colonoscopy. The 2nd half is taken 4 hours before the scheduled colonoscopy.
Colonoscopy Hack #4: Chill the prep
Bowel cleansing agents are better served cold. Chill the bowel cleansing liquid by putting it in a fridge or ice bucket.
Colonoscopy Hack # 5: Suck on candy
Sucking on menthol candy while you ingest the bowel cleansing liquid has been shown to improve the taste, leading to better bowel preparation.
Colonoscopy Hack #6: Add flavor
Add flavor with lemon juice, lemon slices or sugar free flavor enhancers like Crystal Light®.
Colonoscopy Hack #7: Lube and Wipes
The bowel cleansing agent will cause diarrhea, so stay near a toilet. Use a soft toilet tissue. For anorectal irritation or discomfort, use baby wipes, Vaseline, Desitin or hemorrhoidal agents.
Colonoscopy Hack #8: Use a straw
Use straw to drink the bowel cleansing agent. Sipping is better than gulping and reduces the bitter taste.
Colonoscopy Hack #9: Get a champion or navigator
- Get someone to motivate you. The person can be your friend, partner or relative.
- Get a guide. Visit BOWELPREPGUIDE.COM.
- If available through your physician, take advantage of patient engagement and reminder tools like mobile device app, text messages, or email.
Colonoscopy Hack #10: Be a scout
- Get the day off.
- Arrange for transportation and escort. You need an adult and responsible person to take you home.
- Wear loose and comfortable clothing.
- Keep expensive jewelry and other valuables at home.
- Go with a photo ID, insurance card and a form of payment for any copay or deductible.
Colonoscopy can be hacked. If you know any hack that is not mentioned here, please let us know.