Colonoscopy

Colonoscopy

The genetic testing I did when I was first diagnosed with breast cancer put me at a slightly increased risk of colon cancer so my oncologist recommended I get a colonoscopy.

A colonoscopy at 41, I had never imagined that. I thought it was for the elderly.

There are so many things that you discover when you have cancer. Things you didn’t know were related and you find yourself in so many different doctor’s offices. Now I had to see a gastroenterologist and after consulting with him a date was set for a colonoscopy.

The day prior to the procedure I had gotten some very specific instructions.

I could not eat any solid foods, only liquid foods. In addition I could only have clear liquids, and no purple or red. I had bought some clear beef and chicken bouillon to get through the day, as well as several cups of Jello.

I found it quite difficult eating such limiting amount of foods and my energy throughout the day was very low.

The doctor has prescribed a Suprep Bowel Prep kit. The kit consists of two bottles of prep.

I had to drink the first bottle of prep (following the instructions) at 6pm the night before the procedure followed by two 16 oz glasses or bottle of water.

In my case, I was in the bathroom within 30 minutes. The prep causes acute diarrhea to empty your bowels. I spend the next two hours close to the bathroom….

I could not eat or drink anything after midnight the day before the procedure.

The next morning, I had to get up really early to take the second bottle of prep from the prep kit. It was four hours before the colonoscopy and my bowels were completely empty by that time.

I had to arrive at the facility an hour before my scheduled appointment. They called me in pretty quickly and I was put in a hospital bed and they put an IV in me.

After waiting for about 20 minutes, I was rolled into the procedure room. I was asked to turn over and lay on my left side.

The doctor asked if I was ready for my cocktail. The anesthesiologist asked me to count down from ten while she slowly administered the Propofol. I never made it to zero, I remember four, but by three I was asleep.

I woke up in the recovery room about 30 minutes later. The doctor said there was a tiny polyp he had removed and send to the lab for testing. The rest looked clear and no sign of any abnormalities.

A week later they called from the office to let me know the lab results were fine and the polyp was benign.

I now have to have a colonoscopy every five years. Next one in 2024.

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