Health Tip: Preparing for Colonoscopy

(HealthDay News) -- A colonoscopy allows doctors to inspect the colon to detect inflammation, sores or unusual growths.

Preparing for the procedure involves completely emptying the colon to give doctors an unobstructed view. The National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse offers these suggestions to help you prepare for colonoscopy:

  • Follow your doctor's orders for dietary restrictions, which typically include no solid foods for one to three days before the procedure.

  • Adhere to a clear liquid diet, specifically avoiding liquids that contain purple or red dye.

  • The night before the procedure, your doctor may ask you to take a laxative and/or enema to clear your bowels.

  • Tell your doctor about any medications, supplements or herbs that you are taking.

  • Make arrangements for someone to drive you home after the colonoscopy.

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