Liver Associates of Texas, P.A.



Colonoscopy is a Gastroenterology/Hepatology test that allows a physician to examine the large intestine (rectum and colon). During the procedure, a flexible video endoscope is passed through the anus and guided through the rectum and colon to provide a diagnostic view of the lining of the colon and access for treatment.

Colonoscopy Preparation:

THREE DAYS PRIOR: Stop taking any fiber supplements and anti-diarrheal medication. If you are taking medication for diabetes and/or cardiac conditions, follow the instructions you’ve received for managing those medications during the procedure preparation. Eat only low-fiber foods, and avoid foods that contain red, blue or purple dyes that may interfere with the test.

TWO DAYS PRIOR: Continue eating only low-fiber foods. Avoid foods with red, blue or purple dyes.

DAY BEFORE PROCEDURE: Drink only clear liquids or certain light-colored beverages. Do not eat solid foods. You will drink half of the laxative drink today, starting in the late afternoon. Mix your laxative drink and start drinking it, following the instructions below or a handout from the medical center.  Start drinking the laxative between 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. Do not use alcohol, marijuana, or other substances that could impair your thought process. Drink at least 8 glasses of liquid the day before your colonoscopy to prevent dehydration, Also use this time to ensure that you have someone ready to drive you home following the procedure.

Day of Colonoscopy:

If your procedure is in the morning, you may need to get up earlier than usual to finish drinking the laxative. Drink the rest of the laxative 4 to 5 hours before you leave home for the procedure.  Drink about an 8 ounce glass every 10 to 15 minutes, the same as the previous evening. You must finish drinking any other beverage at least 2 hours before your appointment. 

This means that you need to calculate what time you need to get up so you have time to finish the prep drink 4 to 5 hours before leaving home. The other liquids you may drink are the same as you had the day before your procedure. Remember, you can’t drink anything for at least 2 hours before your procedure.

You must have someone to take you home after your colonoscopy and stay with you for at least two hours. Do not use alcohol, marijuana, or other substances that could impair your thought process prior to your appointment. Do not drink alcohol, drive a car, or sign legal documents until the day after your procedure.

After your procedure, you will receive discharge instructions from your nurse after the procedure, including an after-visit summary with the results. If tissue was removed, you will get a letter or phone call within 10 days of your procedure with those results. There is a very small risk of bleeding after a colonoscopy for up to two weeks. You should be within a two-hour drive of a medical center for two weeks following your colonoscopy and avoid traveling outside of the US during this time.

Information Provided By: Kaiser Permanente ©