Colonoscopy Without Sedation

  1. I am sometimes floated to other departments and recently, to the GI lab, where I observed a patient get a colonoscopy without any sedation or pain medications for reasons that I was not clear about.

    It was quite honestly a horrifying experience.

    The doc had stated that the procedure would be a "quick in-and-out" and that they would stop if the patient wasn't tolerating it well which, from my observer's perspective, the patient wasn't (based on the writhing and groaning and yelling) and yet the doc just continued on, making statements like, "we're almost done" and "ok, we're stopping now," after which the doc would proceed... and ended up examining the entire colon.

    I was stunned at the insensitivity of the doc to the patient's obvious suffering and the disingenuous platitudes that seemed to be offered up to the patient. It seemed similar to drilling on someone's tooth sans anesthetic.

    The staff didn't seem particularly bothered by the whole proceeding.

    Was this an aberration or is it really an acceptable practice to sometimes perform a full colonoscopy without medications?
    •  
  2. 4 Comments

  3. by   brownbook
    Not normal where I work. No idea why this happened. Maybe you can seek out one of the nurses someday and ask why no sedation was used on the case you saw. Occasionally there are good reasons.
  4. by   MunoRN
    I've come across a number of Physicians who would prefer to do excruciating procedures without any analgesia or anxiolysis at all, which is why the patient also has a nurse assigned to them, to make sure that doesn't happen.

    I've seen Physicians suggest doing this type of procedures without any sedation, I've yet to see a nurse go along with it, it's unfortunate that the GI lab nurses at your facility don't understand the basic requirements of their role.
  5. by   MikeyT-c-IV
    Quote from ~♪♫ in my ♥~
    I observed a patient get a colonoscopy without any sedation or pain medications for reasons that I was not clear about.
    I've only seen this once as its not common practice. In this case the patient did not want any drug.
  6. by   ~♪♫ in my ♥~
    -----

close