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Preparation for Flexible Sigmoidoscopy

Test Preparation Instructions An Important Exam Requires Careful Preparation

Your doctor has decided that flexible sigmoidoscopy is necessary to help him better evaluate your colon, or large intestine. An important exam such as this requires careful preparation. Accurate results from this exam require that your lower bowel (colon) is carefully cleansed and empty. An improperly prepared bowel may mean that the exam will have to be repeated at another time. More importantly, fecal matter (stool) left in the tract can hide important conditions that may be present. Therefore, it is very important that you follow these instructions as carefully as possible. No laxative preparation is fun. But this Ñprepæ has been developed to make your preparation as simple and effective as possible. Please follow each instruction exactly as given. Note that individual responses to laxatives vary widely. Remain within easy reach of toilet facilities. If you have any questions, please call the office.

Several Days Before the Examination:

Go to the drug store and purchase Two (2) Fleet Disposable Enemas (4 1/2 ounce) which will cost only a few dollars. You will NOT need a prescription.

One Day Before the Examination:

Eat normally. You may take all of your normal prescription medications. Please avoid Metamucil and foods with small seeds such as sesame seeds, kiwi, cucumbers for a few days before your exam.

Day of the Examination
  • About four hours before your exam, begin a clear liquid diet. The liquids you drink may be clear strained citrus juices, and other juices such as apple, cranberry, or grape, or simply plain water. Black coffee, tea, Jello (avoid red) or soft drinks are permissible. All solid foods, milk products, and alcohol should be avoided.
  • About two hours before your exam use the first Fleet Disposable Enema. Shake bottle before using. Remove protective shield from rectal tip. Lie on your left side. Insert enema tip pointing toward navel. Squeeze bottle until nearly all liquid is expelled into rectum. Wait 15 minutes before evacuating, even if the urge is strong.
  • About one hour before your exam use the second Fleet Disposable Enema. Shake bottle before using. Remove protective shield from rectal tip. Lie on your left side. Insert enema tip pointing toward navel. Squeeze bottle until nearly all liquid is expelled into rectum. Wait 15 minutes before evacuating, even if the urge is strong.
  • If you have followed all instructions carefully, your system should be clean, clear and ready for examination. Report for your exam appointment as scheduled. Wear comfortable easily-folded clothing and leave jewelry and other valuables at home. If you have any questions please call our nurse at 412 262-1000 - select option #2
You should arrive at the Center at least 15 minutes before your scheduled appointment. We will complete your registration, have you change clothing, perform any pre-operative orders which might be required by your physician, and answer any questions you might have. Since sedation is not necessary for this simple exam, you will are not required to bring a driver. Please be on time so that you don't cause a delay which could affect many other patients within the same day.


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