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Old 07-10-2010, 10:44 PM   #1
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Unhappy Failed Colonoscopy Prep TWICE!

I would love some advice on this. I'm having the procedure done as a routine screening (I'm 51) and am having problems w/the prep.

First time - Magnesium citrate prep, drank one bottle and was very nauseous, vomited most of it up, couldn't continue and canceled procedure.

Second time - Ducalex/Miralax prep. Followed the clear liquid diet (as I had the first time), I had also not eaten much the day before and was feeling rather nauseous and headachy by the time I took 4 Ducalex tablets at 3 p.m. At 5 p.m. began drinking the Miralax dissolved in lemon-lime Gatorade. (BTW I really dislike Gatorade, this and some blue stuff were the only flavors w/out red coloring). By 6 p.m. I was on the toilet and feeling extremely crampy, faint and nauseous - could not sit upright and lay semi-conscious in bed. Called my doctor around 6:30 - I had finished less than half the Miralax and didn't think I could handle much more. He said to take a break but I needed to finish by 9:00 p.m.. I tried drinking some more, got some down but some came back up, in the end finished about 1/2 the Miralax/Gatorade mix. I took 2 more Ducolax tablets (these were not recommended by my doctor, I took them on my own) at 9:00 p.m. as I could obviously not finish the mixture - just sipping it was enough to make more come back up - and wanted to complete the prep and get the *%&@# thing over with. Very little came up or out in any way until the procedure at 1:00 p.m. the next day.

I considered canceling but did go in at 12:00 and spoke w/the nurse, who said if I was liquidy they could go ahead w/the procedure and irrigate. I decided to do this and got knocked out for it. However, they could not complete the colonoscopy because of the poor prep - described in the report variously as "fair", "sub-optimal", and "poor", and need to re-do in 2 months.

I'm very concerned about this - I need to have this done (I'm was treated for breast cancer five years ago and so am at higher-than-average risk) but don't want to pass out or be so unable to keep this stuff down that I can't continue. I've read that children can be prepped over a four-day period with 1.5 grams of Miralax per kilo each day and called the doctors office about it; they said it sounded o.k. but I was so nervous and upset when I called I'm not sure I made sense. I also thought about the Fleets soda and the tablets but they can cause major dehydration and kidney damage - not a good idea as dehydration is probably what caused the fainting the last time.

So this is my idea, based on a lot of reading and thought: find Pedialyte or some other drink w/electrolyte that I can tolerate and ask about taking 2 Ducolex tablets before the Miralax and 2 after. Also see if I can take two doses of Miralax a couple of hours apart or even during the evening and next morning, followed by 2 more Ducolex tablets. Also go on a 2-day liquid diet, but be sure to eat lots of soup and jello/ices to keep up my strength.

Does this sound like a good idea? Or does anyone know about the four-day Miralax prep? (I couldn't find anything except in some medical journal?). Is there any advice that might be helpful?

It's probably worth adding that I was terrified of both the prep and the procedure before. Now I'm not so worried about the procedure (I was totally knocked out w/fentanyl) but am still very worried about the prep, which I know I HAVE to get through.

 
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Old 07-11-2010, 10:34 AM   #2
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Re: Failed Colonoscopy Prep TWICE!

I have colonic inertia, which is a slow transit constipation. I just had a colonoscopy in June and this is what I did. Since I have such a slow transit, I did the prep for 4 days. I fasted for 2 days...and I drank miralax, 2 doses everyday for the 4 days prior to prep day, which made my stool very liquidy.....on the day before the colonoscopy, the prep day for most folks, I took 2 dulcolax that morning...I drank 64 ounces of fluid, mostly water, over the day also....at 3pm, I started drinking the miralax....I put 3 doses in 12 ounces of juice and gulped it down. No problem since miralax is tasteless. I also took 1 more dulcolax at this time. I then waited until 4 pm and did another 12 ounces of juice with 3 more doses of miralax. I then drank some water and waited for my stomach to settle....walking around also helps with the nausea. Do NOT lay down....this will only make you sicker. At 6 pm I took another 3 doses of miralax with 12 ounces of juice. My reasoning with the 3 doses of miralax in 12 ounces of juice was so I got the most miralax in the least amount of fluid in case I had a hard time with the amount of fluid.

Believe me, you will be pooping your brains out. I then just drank water and juice until midnight. My colon was nice and clear with this prep....good luck

 
Old 07-11-2010, 12:02 PM   #3
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Re: Failed Colonoscopy Prep TWICE!

Oh my, i feel for you. They do need to find easier ways to get us through these colonoscopy preps.

A thought for you..possibly talking to your doc and having him write a prescription for OsmoPrep tablet or Visicol Tablet in place of all the other.
Maybe this would be easier as all the other is making you so nauseated sick.

Some of the things we have to go through that needs to be done for our health. Not fun at all is it.

Hope you get through this with all good results too.

Be Well
BeHappy2

 
Old 07-11-2010, 03:24 PM   #4
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Re: Failed Colonoscopy Prep TWICE!

Thanks for the suggestion; unfortunately my understanding is that the pills also contain the same drugs as the phospho-soda, which I'm reluctant to take because of the (admittedly very small) possibility of kidney damage. The way I look at it, I only had a 2% chance of being diagnosed with breast cancer on the mammogram that found it, so there's somebody that ends up in bad shape even in very low-risk things...and I don't want that somebody to be me.

I've been doing a lot of reading on these boards, and many people say that the Miralax/Ducolax prep is the easiest (which can only make me imagine how horrible the other ones are); of course everyone has different reactions to things. I just want to figure out how to get through it (or another type of prep) w/out vomiting much of it up or becoming so nauseous and faint that I literally can't get off the couch.

 
Old 07-11-2010, 05:30 PM   #5
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Re: Failed Colonoscopy Prep TWICE!

Check my2cents2's July post in the discussion on 2-day colonoscopy prep- he/she got by with a little mag citrate and a fair number of enemas. Enemas at least have the advantage of not having to drink any noxious chemicals and having almost-immediate effects. Check wiith your doc but I've always felt they shouldn't object to any method as long as it gets the job done and doesn't jeopardize your health.

If this is making you nervous you might even want to try it ahead of time and see if it's effective. I just went through a failed prep with successful results the second time around so I feel some of your pain. I hope you get the same result I got- come back in 2015!

 
Old 07-15-2010, 11:39 PM   #6
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Re: Failed Colonoscopy Prep TWICE!

I am in FULL agreement with LUCKYCHARMS....I have had the very same problem that you are having. For me, it was urgent that I manage to empty my bowels because I was scheduled to have my large intestine removed, along with a resectioning of my small intestine & bowel as well. I began my prep 4 days in advance & basically did the same thing that Luckycharms did. I had failed at getting things to empty in the past for some scheduled tests that were needed & I knew that this time, I could not fail. I discussed it with my surgeon & we agreed that I was able to go about it this way (the only problem that it DID cause for me was a depletion in my potassium level & this ALMOST stopped my surgery....luckily, I was his only surgery that day & he was willing to wait while they pumped massive dosages of potassium into me via IV-which is VERY painful when being done rapidly). I normally have an issue with my potassium though, so you would probably not run into this issue.

I am not certain if you have managed to have your test done yet or not, but I wish you the very best in getting it done. It is a difficult problem to live with. I too, encountered the vomiting when trying to keep everything down. That is why the 4 day prep was a God send for me.

Best of luck!

 
Old 07-16-2010, 08:01 AM   #7
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Re: Failed Colonoscopy Prep TWICE!

I was also low in potassium before my colon resection surgery, June 21, 2010 and luckily, my surgery was not canceled but postponed for one hour while I got potassium by IV. But, I had a colonoscopy just 6 days before, so I am sure 2 bowel preps in 6 days was not the smartest thing.

 
Old 07-16-2010, 01:57 PM   #8
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Re: Failed Colonoscopy Prep TWICE!

I had the large intestine removed & then they did a resecection of the small intestine to the bowel (where I now have a hernia that needs to be repaired). Unfortunately, that surgery has to be postponed because, believe it or not, my incision from the ORIGINAL surgery has never fully healed & just after the 4th of July holiday, the surgeon reopened it all together! I am now back to having to pack it on a daily basis to allow it to heal from the inside out. I've run into MORE complications & they have requested visiting nurses again (I had them 3 times a day for 7 months following my initial surgery due to 4 very large abscesses that formed in my abdomen after the surgery). We are trying very hard to prevent that from happening again with the incision that I have now. It has just been one thing after another & quite frankly, after over a year, I would really like to see this thing closed up once & for all!!! Just an FYI, I still need to be on very high doses of potassium on a daily basis. Once they remove the large intestine, your body does not absorb vitamins the way it should....I take potassium & magnisium in large quantities. Also much more prone to dehydration without a large intestine as well...even if you drink lots of fluids. It's a never ending battle.

My best wishes to you. Did you have trouble following your surgery. Have things been healing up ok for you? I do have other medical issues that cause problems with healing, so there was concern about that to begin with.

Stay healthy!!!!!

 
Old 07-16-2010, 06:26 PM   #9
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Re: Failed Colonoscopy Prep TWICE!

Nalabud, I had a subtotal colectomy, I still have some of my large intestines, and the doctor did a fecal diversion, a temporary loop ileostomy, which means I have a stoma, a "bag". I see my doctor next week and he will check out my incision and see how I am healing. It seems to be healing.

Since he bypassed my entire colon and all I am using is my small intestine right now, I have to be very cautious about drinking lots of fluid. I have been drinking 68 ounces of water per day and also gatorade and sweet tea. When my stoma has too much output, I can take immodium to slow the output down and luckily it has been working.

What is wrong with your colon? I have many issues with my colon and rectum and may not be able to have a reversal....

 
Old 07-17-2010, 12:48 AM   #10
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Re: Failed Colonoscopy Prep TWICE!

I still have a SMALL portion of my large colon as well, just not much. They never did figure out what was wrong. I did not need to have a temporary colostomy, as my surgeon chose to reattach during my surgery instead (which I greatly appreciated). I do know that I had very slow transit time. It would take forever for me to process things that I ate. I would have a bm once every 4-6 WEEKS! This was causing me a LOT of pain & discomfort, as you can imagine. The bright side to it all, was that I was overweight & managed to lose 102 lbs & now only weigh 120 lbs! Not bad....I still can only eat one meal a day due to major stomach discomfort upon eating. My surgeon recently told me that my transit time has not gotten much better & that there really is not much else that he can do for that (I have tried every medication out there on the market & even was routinely taking 10-15 visicol tablets on a daily basis). You can't live without a small intestine, so that has to stay.....basically, it's a live with your situtation type of thing. But, I have many medical issues, so this does not come as a major surprise to me. It's just one more thing to add to my long list of complicated problems. The bright side is that I have a very good attitude about it all & even though I have been disabled for about 8 years now, I still smile & joke about it all. I figure that there is not much sense in complaining about it, as there is nothing I can do about any of it anyways. I've been told by many that if they were in my place, they would have had a nervous breakdown a long time ago. I just figure that life is too short to worry about the things that I have no control over. I have a wonderful family, a great husband who has stuck by me thru all of this, two beautiful daughters, a young grandson & another grandchild on the way.....what's to be miserable about I hope, for your sake, that your doctor is able to to your reversal & get things back the way they should be. My primary care doctor had it done the way that you did & his was reversed without to many issues. He did develop a fistula that required surgery afterwards, but that's about it. I've had surgery on one of those in the past as well, it just was not in regards to the colon surgery.

 
Old 02-10-2011, 09:41 AM   #11
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Cool Update 2/11

Well, it took eight months for me to try again, having had such bad experiences, but this time was much, much better. I spoke w/the GI nurse who told me not to take the Ducolax and to take the Miralax mixture in two doses. I also experimented with different types of Gatorade-type drinks until I found one (I think it was called Powerjuice) that I could at least tolerate. I was also fortunate enough to find, right before I started the prep, some water fortified with extra electrolytes called .

I was careful to eat as low-residue diet as possible the several days before the prep and also not to eat too much. I also up on jello, beef broth, juice, etc. to keep hydrated. I took the first Miralax dose at 6:00 p.m. the day before the test and the second at 5:30 a.m. the morning of the test (scheduled for 2:30 p.m.).

I did make a mistake and had some Italian ice which was made with mango puree, which I later realized was not allowed.

I was not entirely 'clean' by the time of the test; the doctor rated the quality of the prep 'fair to good'. But at least he was able to do the test. It went fine and I need to come back in five years. The doctor does want me to do the "Golitely" prep next time.

If I had to do it again, I would have started earlier on the day before the test - around 10:00 a.m. and do three doses of Miralax (ie. 50% more, I would check this out with my doctors office first). I think this would clear me out completely.

During the prep, I had to use the bathroom a lot but did not feel I had to stay in there continually. There was a lot of 'grumbling' but no bad cramps or nausea. I did take my time drinking the Miralax combo - it took about 1.5 hours each time - I'm not sure if this effected the quality of the prep.

I should not that I'm a fairly small woman and this may not work as well on physically larger people. But at least I got through it and it was not the nightmare it was before. Next time it should go even better.

Many, many thanks to those who responded and Good Luck to all who are going through this!

 
Old 02-10-2011, 10:21 AM   #12
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Re: Failed Colonoscopy Prep TWICE!

Lordy, I can't do a prep either. I get so sick, and I can't get that nasty stuff down, no matter how I try, I gag, I absolutely gag.

 
Old 02-10-2011, 10:26 AM   #13
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Forgot to add the names of drinks!

The Gatorade substitute (still has the electrolytes, etc.) is called Joint Juice. The Kiwi-Strawberry was the least offensive of the lot. The electrolyte water is called SmartWater. I mixed this with some Welsch's white grape/peach juice combination and it was very drinkable.

 
Old 04-13-2011, 11:25 AM   #14
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Re: Forgot to add the names of drinks!

I am pretty sure I am going to get a colonoscopy soon. I have some unsettling symptoms and will see the doctor monday. My father died of colon cancer and my mother had colon cancer.

I had my first scope 7 years ago. It wasn't a good scope because I couldn't gag down the stuff for a good prep.

Anyone who has any ideas about how to gag the stuff down - miralax or mag citrate, please give me any ideas that you might have. I need to do a good prep this time and I can't play around anymore.

Thanx

 
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