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Disease - Conditions

Sigmoidoscopy

Sigmoidoscopy is done to examine the rectum and lower portion of the colon using a lighted, flexible tube with a camera on the end called a sigmoidoscope. This exam is used as a preventive screening measure against colon cancer and colorectal cancer. It is also used to diagnose and treat abdominal pain, persistent diarrhea, rectal bleeding, or blood in the stool.

Click to learn more about sigmoidoscopy.

Procedure Instructions

Download Procedure Instructions

Preparation

  • You MUST arrange a ride for the day of your exam. If you fail to arrange acceptable transportation, your procedure will need to be rescheduled.
  • If you have diabetes, ask your physician for diet and medication instructions.
  • If you are or may be pregnant, please discuss the risks and benefits of this procedure with your doctor.
  • Please bring a list of all of your current medications, including any over-the-counter medications with you.
  • If you must cancel or reschedule your appointment, please call your doctor’s office as soon as possible.

1 Week Before Procedure

If you take aspirin or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, such as Advil, Motrin, Celebrex or Ibuprofen, you may continue to take them as usual unless otherwise instructed by your physician. You should discuss this with your physician in advance of the procedure. Ask your doctor for specific instructions if you take a blood thinner like Plavix, Pradaxa, Clopidogrel, Coumadin, Warfarin, Effient, Prasugrel or Lovenox.

1 Day Before Procedure

Stop eating all solid foods no later than midnight. Clear liquids are acceptable to drink. Do not consume any red or purple liquids or alcohol.

Clear Liquid:

  • Gatorade, Pedialyte or Powerade
  • Clear broth or bouillon
  • Coffee or tea (no milk or non-dairy creamer)
  • Carbonated and non-carbonated soft drinks
  • Kool-Aid or other fruit-flavored drinks
  • Strained fruit juices (no pulp)
  • Jell-O, popsicles, hard candy

Not Clear Liquid:

  • No red or purple items of any kind
  • No alcohol
  • No milk or non dairy creamers
  • No noodles or vegetables in soup
  • No juice with pulp
  • No liquid you cannot see through

Day of Procedure

  • Stop drinking clear liquids 6 hours prior to your exam.
  • You may take all of your usual morning medications with 4 oz of water up to 3 hours prior to your procedure. 
  • 1 hour before leaving home, take two (2) Fleet Enemas.
  • Bring a list of all of your current medications, including any overthe-counter medications, with you.