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How to Prepare for a Colonoscopy in NJ

How to Prepare for Colonoscopy

Before You Begin

  • Buy two bottles of MAGNESIUM CITRATE (NO RED) and 4 DULCOLAX TABLETS over the counter at the pharmacy.

One Week Prior to the Procedure

  • Do not take iron pills. Your doctor will let you know if you have to hold any medication. These may include: Plavix, Coumadian, Aspirin, Percodan. TYLENOL or ACETAMINOPHEN is safe to take prior to the procedure.

Day Before Procedure

  • Drink abundant fluids to avoid dehydration and to help flush the colon.
  • Your total fluids in-take should be at least 200 ounces.
  • Examples of Clear Liquids:
    • Water
    • Gatorade (not red)
    • Ginger ale, Seltzer, 7Up
    • Apple Juice (clear), white grape
    • Coffee/Tea without milk
    • Iced tea
    • Clear broth
    • Jello, popsicles, or Italian Ice (no red)
  • At 5PM – Take 4 dulcolax tablets with an 8 ounce glass of water.  Continue with clear liquids to help flush out colon.
  • At 8PM – Take 1st bottle of magnesium citrate. Continue clear liquids.

The Day of Your Colonoscopy

  • Morning: 4AM – Take 2nd bottle of magnesium citrate.
  • Continue clear liquids until 4 hours before your procedure. At this point, you must stop all liquids, including water, gum, candy, mints, and cough drops.
    • You may take your vital medications with a small sip of water.
    • You may brush your teeth.
    • Please arrive for your procedure at least a half an hour prior to your procedure time.
    • Please make sure you have arranged ahead of time for a responsible adult (age 18 or over) to drive you home after the procedure.
    • If you are a diabetic, to avoid dangerously low blood sugar, please do not take your oral medications for your diabetes or your insulin on the morning of your procedure. You can resume your diabetes medications after the procedure, once you have eaten.  If you are taking insulin it is always a good idea to check with your endocrinologist or primary doctor as to the best way to manage your blood sugars. Please bring your insulin with you. If you are unsure about taking any medications, please call us.
    • If you are taking coumadin, plavix, or aspirin, they may need to be stopped prior to your procedure. Please ask your doctor. These medications are usually stopped several days before your procedure.
    • Wear comfortable, loose clothing such as a sweat suit.  No metal should be worn including underwire bras or zippers.  Leave all jewelry at home including belly rings & tongue piercings.
    • If you are a smoker, it is advised that you do not smoke at least 6 hours before the procedure.

After Your Colonoscopy

  • You must arrange for a responsible adult (18 or over) to drive you home. Going home in a taxi is not allowed.
  • The effects of the anesthesia can persist for 24 hours. After receiving the sedation, you must exercise extreme caution before engaging in any activity that could be harmful to yourself or others (such as driving a car). Do not make any important decisions and do not drink any alcoholic beverages during this time period.
  • Take only the medication that is prescribed by your doctor.
  • After your procedure, you may have anything you’d like to eat or drink. You will probably want to start with something light. Please include plenty of fluids. Avoid items that cause gas such as sodas and salads.
  • If your procedure required the placement of a metal clip, you cannot have an MRI for 30 days.

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