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Types of Colon Prep

There are several types of colon-cleansing regimens, and you can talk to your doctor if you have a preference for one type of colon flush (Source: Health.Harvard.edu).

Bowel Preparation: Diet
Description:

    On the day before your colonoscopy, you can have clear liquids such as broths, soft drinks, tea, coffee (with no milk or creamer), clear juices, Jell-O (any color except red, blue or purple), popsicles, Italian ice (any color expect red, blue or purple).

Hints:

    Make certain that none of your liquids contain red, blue or purple dye, or artificial coloring. If you are not sure if one of your desired foods is acceptable, ask your doctor for specifics.

Bowel Preparation: Polyethelene glycol (PEG). Brand names: Golytely, Colyte, Nulytely, Trilyte, Halfytely
Description:

    This electrolye-balanced solution is consumed in large amounts (4 liters) the night before the procedure. You drink 8 ounces every 10 minutes until the bowel runs clear or you finish the solution. Another method is to divide the solution into 3 liters the night before and 1 liter the morning of the colonoscopy. A newer preparation uses 2 liters of solution taken with a laxative.

Hints:

    PEG solutions push a large volume of fluid through the intestines to force out waste. They are considered safer than oral sodium phosphate (OSP) solutions because they do not disrupt electrolyte balance. The downside is that the solution tastes salty, and the large amount of fluid can make you feel nauseated. Other symptoms are vomiting, bloating and cramping.

Bowel Preparation: Oral soldium phosphate (OSP)  solution. Brand names: Fleet Phospho-soda, EZ-Prep, Fleet Accu-prep
Description:

    Two small doses of OSP solution are diluted in 8 ounces of fluid and area taken 10 to 12 hours apart. Each dose must be followed by 16 ounces or more of liquid. You must get adequate liquids during the preparation and after the colonoscopy.

Hints:

    OSP brings water into the intestines to do the cleansing. It is effective and easy to tolerate, but it can cause dehydration and electrolyte imbalance.

Bowel Preparation: Oral sodium phosphate tablets.  Brand name: Visicol, OsmoPrep
Description:

    Twenty tablets are taken the evening before the colonoscopy, 4 at a time with 8 ounces of clear liquid every 15 minutes. Anywhere from 12 to 20 more are taken a few hours before the procedure. Bisacodyl can be added.

Hints:

    OSP tablets work the same as liquid OSP or PEG. They can also cause dehydration and electrolyte imbalance.

Bowel Preparation: Laxatives:  Magnesium citrate Bisacodyl
Description:

    Either laxative can be used with 2 liters of PEG. Both laxatives can be used together with a restricted diet. Magnesium citrate can be used alone.

Hints:

    There are rare reports of ischemic colitis (loss of blood supply to the colon) with bisacodyl.