Colonoscopy and Upper Endoscopy (EGD) without sedation
I just did both a colonoscopy and upper endoscopy (EGD) with no sedation. I know that deciding whether to use sedation is something people often ask about, so I thought I would share my experience with the world as it might help others make the decision about whether or not to use sedation.
EGD: This was rather unpleasant. They gave me a throat spay to numb the back of my throat. When my throat went numb at first I felt like I was choking, and I had to calm myself down and focus on my breathing. Then he put the camera in and I immediately began to gag. I was gagging and drooling the whole time and felt like throwing up (but I couldn't because my stomach was empty). However, the good thing is that it was really fast. It only took about 2 minutes. I was really amazed by how fast the doc managed to do it. So anyways, it was two minutes of serious discomfort. I think it was worth it to do it without sedation and just be able to walk away and drive home instead of having to recover from sedation meds.
Colonoscopy: This was easier than the EGD. Most of the time it did not hurt at all. At one point the cable got a loop in it and the doc had to wiggle it around a lot to get it straightened out. That part did hurt. It was about like having really bad gas cramps. Once he got it straightened out it was fine again. He let me watch the monitor the whole time and explained everything I was seeing. It was really neat to see the inside of my intestines! I'm definitely glad I was awake for this.
Afterwards I feel fine except my throat is mildy soar. My final take would be that probably most people could do the colonoscopy without sedation. For the EGD it just depends what your tolerance for discomfort is. It wasn't fun, but it was over fast and I got through it.