Patient Comments: Colonoscopy - Describe Your Experience

Please describe your experience with a Colonoscopy.

Comment from: goodnews, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: April 24

I just had a screening colonoscopy today. The preparation is the most difficult – no food, and little sleep, due to having to go to the toilet all the time! The procedure itself was no problem at all. I had propofol anesthesia (given through an IV by a board-certified anesthesiologist) – which is the best way to do this. I went to sleep right away, felt nothing, and woke up with no side effects. The board-certified gastroenterologist (yes, I only see doctors who are board-certified) explained the procedure to me ahead of time, and personally told me the findings after. She also gave me a typed report with photos. I had no polyps, no cancer, and don't need to do this for another 10 years. Don't let the negative experiences you can read about colonoscopies discourage you. Just find a place that uses propofol and board-certified specialists.

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Comment from: Bob, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: September 02

I had my colonoscopy done in Seoul, Korea. The pretest period included three days of a restricted diet, avoiding aspirin, and the last day before the test, eating only rice gruel. Between 5 and 9 a.m. on the day of test, I drank a glass of colyte at 10 minute intervals, and gasocol. At 4 p.m. I received a shot in the butt and waited about 30 minutes for it to take effect; apparently it was a muscle relaxer, as it did not seem to make me groggy. I was told to lie on my left side at the beginning of the exam, and later on my back with the right leg crossing the left; I watched the procedure on a color monitor. Before the doctor put the probe in, it seems he put on some local anesthetic to numb the rectum; I didn't feel the probe as it entered, nor could I feel it as it snaked through the colon. No problems with "corners." Everything seemed pretty clean, although there were pockets of liquid that the doctor suctioned out. Everything seemed fine, until as he was withdrawing the probe. Carefully examining the vaults, he found one very small polyp. I couldn't distinguish it from the surrounding tissue. I watched as he looped and removed it. I couldn't feel anything; it was entirely painless. When it was over, I walked back to the waiting room where I received some instructions about diet, activities and risks relating to the excision of the polyp. Then I dressed and went home. So far so good except for the polyp. My test results are due next week.

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Comment from: 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: August 04

I had the colonoscopy done 6 weeks ago, diagnosed with Crohn's and now am on meds which have stabilized and improved the symptoms. I have had 3 procedures, first with no meds - that was awful and painful; 2nd with meds stating that I won't remember anything - I did and it was painful; 3rd I went under and don't remember a thing; I know there will be a 4th and many more so I am thankful that I have found a surgeon who will do this in the OR under anaesthetic. I have lost a mother and sister to bowel cancer so if my fate is to get cancer, I will at least get an early diagnosis.

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Published: July 31

Had it done yesterday and had been told by a colleague that I would not need sedation. I was hoping to go into work afterwards, so I didn't use anesthesia. However, I found it very painful at the point that the doctor got to a "sigmoid curve" in my bowel. He tried everything to get around that corner, but it was excruciating. I got them to stop and took the sedative. It knocked me out and they finished the procedure, but he said it still took 15 minutes to get around the loop. I went home and was sore all day and logy from the drugs. I am waiting for my first bowel movement and have slight rectal bleeding. Not fun. But, got a clean slate, so it is worth it.

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Published: July 28

I had it done on Friday. The doctor explained the whole procedure. I went because my mom died at age 52 from colon cancer and I was only a little girl when she died. I just wanted to keep focused on the chances of me getting it. He was very kind and the procedure after drinking the nullify was great it was over quickly he talked to me and told me what he was doing.

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Published: July 22

I told the doc doing my colonoscopy that I was allergic to the Versed and she gave it to me anyway. This colonoscopy was the most painful, degrading and potentially life-threatening event of my life. I would NEVER recommend colonoscopy to my worst enemy; additionally, my neighbor (a nurse) just got one and she got the versed/fentanyl and she screamed her head off. They just laughed and said "she won't remember a thing" well, she did and now she's a basket case. Get a virtual, not a regular colonoscopy and if you have polyps, get real anesthesia and have it done in the OR. This is not a drive-thru procedure.

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