recent colonoscopy experience - page 13

by mat/childnurse | 134,472 Views | 216 Comments

I had my first colonoscopy last Friday. I am 46 and my mother has had two surgeries for colon CA, so I felt pretty good about being so responsible. I went to every website I could find and researched all aspects of the... Read More


  1. 0
    Quote from bbarbie1
    I guess it's a matter of whether he just kept pushing and hurting, or if you agreed to let him (for the 2nd C). Were you in any shape, with some meds, to agree to let him proceed, or to even process the information? He could have sent you for a virtual that same day--mine offered to do that if things got to painful. "Trying to comfort" you, my God, what an awful way to go through this procedure. At least I'm glad the last one was better.
    No, I would say I was not in any shape to make a decision one way or another. I guess the problem was - no real thought before hand about what to do in that situation. Virtual is not available in our area - so I don't see any other options. At the particular time it was happening - I was wanting her to stop. I don't know if I had any options other than stopping - and NOT having the procedure, or just getting through it. I hope others on here will be more prepared and have alternatives when they go into their procedure should this happen to them.
  2. 0
    Please ask for diprivan for sedation. It burns like wildfire going in but the instant it hits your out. Personal experience talking. I awoke and felt like I had taken the best nap of my life. Was not groggy or anything. No discomfort whatsoever and I had a polyp removed too. Now, if they can just figure out what to do with the nasty prep more people would have it done. I'm sorry for your suffering needlessly.
  3. 0
    I guess everyone is different. I am so sorry to hear some of you had such bad experiences!

    I just had my 1st colonoscopy (totally unexpected of course at age 34). I was scared silly. But they gave me versed & fentanyl...I was awake but feeling no pain. I just was kinda stoned out but entertained by watching the screen. I remember watching them take biopsies- which didn't hurt at all.

    I didn't want to be knocked out. That scared me more than anything. :uhoh21: My GI doc and the endo nurse asked me what I preferred...awake or asleep. I said, " Awake if I am comfortable, but if it hurts, be generous with meds."
    I guess I was lucky! I am so appreciative of the staff who kept the whole procedure very relaxed for me and pain free.
  4. 0
    I had my first colonoscopy at age 23 after have colon surgery, its wasnt pleasant. I was awake the entire time, sure they gave me sleeping meds, but for some reason it didnt work.
  5. 0
    Kona, you were very fortunate. You got a skilled scopist w/consideration for his/her patients. Too many are in too much of a hurry to hone their skills and prefer to rely on the sedation to block their patients' memory of pain due to the scope shaft looping back onto itself or using too much air.
  6. 0
    I had my first colonoscopy yesterday, and I wouldn't hesitate to do it again. I had light sedation at my request, and I was able to keep my glasses and bring in my ipod, of which the doctor wholly approved. The music and the monitor (which I could actually see) kept me occupied. The doctor was skilled and careful, and the nurses were kind and patient. I felt some discomfort but was able to tolerate it. I think the attitude of the staff and the reasonable accommodations had a lot to do with my positive experience. I wouldn't want to be unconscious for the procedure, nor would I want to be in a situation where I didn't have a choice about it. It seems that when Diprovan becomes the drug that's used, there is no other option.
  7. 0
    I am not a nurse or nursing student, but I saw a couple of other posters here who weren't, either, so I felt I would like to go ahead and post this in an attempt to alleviate some stress that some potential scope-ees might be feeling. I had my first colonoscopy last Friday. Having an inquiring mind, I did a lot of web research prior to this and happened upon this site. The first thing I read was the horror story about the poor woman being awake and in horrible pain through the whole procedure. I read many more accounts of this happening - people begging the doc to stop - people describing the pain as feeling as if they were being disemboweled, etc. I felt like calling the procedure off. However, I have been seeing my doc for years and he assured me I would be "out." Several days before the procedure, I spoke with one of the anesthesiologists in the group that works with my doc in an adjoining surgery center. I was assured I would be given propofol, fentanil and versed and that I would NOT be awake during the procedure. I stressed that I did not want to have to be given a drug to FORGET the procedure (as one person stated, if they are having to give us drugs to forget the procedure then they're not doing enough to alleviate the horror of the procedure itself) - I wanted to be OUT during the procedure itself. He told me this would be the case. I won't even go into the prep, other than to say I will NEVER attempt to do the GoLytely again, but the procedure itself was wonderful. Only pain I ever felt was from the IV, I have small veins and they ended up with one on top of my forearm, not exactly comfy. The anesthesiologist explained what he was doing - he shot me up with a drug, I asked him what it was and he told me it was the versed (I was seeing double at that point!), then he zinged another drug into the IV. I remember thinking "that must be the propofol" and that was the last thing I knew until I was waking up at home in my bed. I do not remember waking up, putting on my clothes, carrying on a 30 minute conversation with my sister and boyfriend, the ride home, or getting into the house. But you know what? That was fine with me, as long as I didn't wake up during that darn procedure! I do realize the versed is an amnesiac and so I suppose it's possible I could have been semi-conscious during the procedure, but it's my understanding that propofol is a very deep sedative akin to general anesthesia. I was not nauseated after the procedure, slept a few hours, woke up and felt great. No pain from the procedure itself afterward, I never had the distension from the air. It was great. I won't dread it again.

    I have had a real beef with the medical field for a long time, it seems as if many doctors and other medical staff think there is some merit in suffering. We have the drugs . . . they can alleviate the pain and suffering . . . why not USE them? Wouldn't dream of having a 3 foot tube maneuvering up my insides while I was awake to know it. And why should I? JUST GIVE ME THE DRUGS! I read another quote from a medical person who made the point that epidurals are not medically necessary for childbirth but they are HUMANE and that hits the mark exactly. I'm sure deep sedation is not medically necessary for a colonoscopy, but it is HUMANE and I believe more people would have this very much needed procedure if they had nothing to dread.

    I would say to anyone reading this, facing a colonoscopy for the first time, ask for propofol and if your doctor will not or cannot administer it . . . find someone who can.
  8. 0
    I have Crohn's, and have had several scopes. Based on my own experiences, 2 of Versed and 50 of Demerol would not have been nearly enough for me. I have had up to 8 of versed, and even 125 of Demerol by one happy-to-push-narcs doc. I wasn't complaining. I have also had Propofol, and much prefer that over Versed! It was instant, it was suffecient, and it was over quickly. I am having another scope tomorrow (yes, I am hungry right now) with a new doc, and she uses Versed/Demerol, so I plan to tell her up front what has worked for me, and what I would like. I did wake briefly during one scope, and I certainly hope it doesn't happen again.
  9. 0
    I was told about 2 months ago I needed a colonoscopy to investigate some abdominal painst I have been having. I was immediatly concerned and after reading and viewing a range of internet resources on the subject I basically became terrorfied. I refused my consultant's advice and became adamant that I would never have such done. My problems were the risks (some sites put it at 1 in 50 to 1 in 200 of serious complications and under 1 in 1000 of dying); pain (some reports put it as the worst pain ever); indignity and revultion.

    After a month I new I would have to do something and when my 14 year old son asked me if I had cancer and I could not say one way or the other I new I had to face my fears. I could not go back to the first consultant as I had no faith in him at all so I found a consultant in London who I went to for consultation. He confirmed it would be sensible for me to have the procedure but was so different to the first guy. He told me over 50% of his patients have no sedation or pain relief though are always free to request it if things get uncomfortable. This was so different to the picture I had of people having to be doped out of their minds and also given amnesia due to the pain and horrors of the process. He said he had not had a perforation in over 20,000 procedures. This was a far more acceptable level that the published figures. He said his patients are always in control and can ask to stop at any time. This alayed my feers of being held down while concious but incapacitated and tortured. He showed me the examination room, the equipment and cleaning facilities. This alayed feers over cross infection among other things. He even helped with my problem of having all on show in front of female nurses by explaining I could wear pants that exposed the bare minimum and that I could be covered to retain dignity.

    After all the above I decided to go for it. Prep was not that bad at all (Picolax *2 plus Ducolax) but I was a nervous wreck when I got to the endoscopy unit the next day. The consultant spent time relaxing me and reassuring me before I was wheeled in. I opted not to have any medication other than the mandatory injection to relax the bowl (no pain relief, no sedatives, no amnesics). The process began and I got hooked on the TV monitor picture. I maintained a conversation with the consultant throughout. It was never painful at all. Very mild stretching sensations was as bad as it got and I would say being examined by having my abdomed pressed externally at the GP was about as bad. I felt elated when I was told the picture on screed was the inside of the ilium as I knew I had managed it. On the way out the consultant took 3 biopsies and removed 4 polips. No pain or even sensations here. The strongest sensation was when he sucked out some air on the way and this felt strange but not unpleasant.

    After 30 minutes I was done. Colour pictures as a memento I dressed and left for a normal day. I have to go back for results in a week or so and know because of the polips I will be going through it all again in 5 years but you know what? I am not bothered in the least. It was less unpleasant that a checkup at the dentist.

    So if you are due to be scoped take comfort. I was terrorfied and nearly refused to go through with it but found it to be nothing. Maybe I had a good doctor but he would not be unique. Just ask your consultant a couple of questions. What is their personal complications rate? How many of their patients opt not to have any medication and get through the procedure without changing their mind? Can you stay in control and abort the test at any time if you want to? If the answers are good then go for it and relax. It may be a bit freaky but its nothing to worry about.
  10. 0
    Quote from steveri
    I was told about 2 months ago I needed a colonoscopy to investigate some abdominal painst I have been having. I was immediatly concerned and after reading and viewing a range of internet resources on the subject I basically became terrorfied. I refused my consultant's advice and became adamant that I would never have such done. My problems were the risks (some sites put it at 1 in 50 to 1 in 200 of serious complications and under 1 in 1000 of dying); pain (some reports put it as the worst pain ever); indignity and revultion.

    The consultant spent time relaxing me and reassuring me before I was wheeled in. I opted not to have any medication other than the mandatory injection to relax the bowl (no pain relief, no sedatives, no amnesics).

    I felt elated when I was told the picture on screed was the inside of the ilium as I knew I had managed it. On the way out the consultant took 3 biopsies and removed 4 polips. No pain or even sensations here. The strongest sensation was when he sucked out some air on the way and this felt strange but not unpleasant.

    After 30 minutes I was done. Colour pictures as a memento I dressed and left for a normal day. I have to go back for results in a week or so and know because of the polips I will be going through it all again in 5 years but you know what?

    So if you are due to be scoped take comfort. I was terrorfied and nearly refused to go through with it but found it to be nothing. Maybe I had a good doctor but he would not be unique. Just ask your consultant a couple of questions. What is their personal complications rate? How many of their patients opt not to have any medication and get through the procedure without changing their mind? Can you stay in control and abort the test at any time if you want to? If the answers are good then go for it and relax. It may be a bit freaky but its nothing to worry about.
    I am glad that it all worked out well for you and I hope that your results are good.

    A couple of issues. The complication rates that you quote upfront are higher than those from many GI sites. I am curious as to where they came from.

    There is no "mandatory injection" given to relax the bowel, as scopes have been done without any meds at all. Do you happen to know the name of the med?

    After polyps have been found, they usually rescope within one year, to see if they reoccur.

    To the poster that received profolol:

    I agree that profolol can be great for scopes, however, as it should(really must) be administered by an anesthesia professional, many places cannot safely provide it. Be sure that where ever the procedure is done with profolol, that it is given by anesthesia w/access to emergency equipment and not given by regular nurses.
    Last edit by caroladybelle on Sep 27, '06


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