Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Colonoscopy-Have You Had Yours??

Here I am on a beautiful fall day in Southern California. Drinking Chicken Broth for breakfast. Why? Well, so glad you asked! I am prepping for a colonoscopy tomorrow. Not my favorite thing to do, by far. This will be my 5th one, I believe. I have actually lost count. Since I am one of 1.5 million Americans that have Ulcerative Colitis, I will go ahead with the exam.
 The prep is horrendous, to say the least. I can only have clear liquids today. At noon I will have to take four (!!) Ducolax tablets. By at least 6 p.m., I will have to drink vile liquid to clear out my colon. Then drink the vile liquid again by 5 a.m.. You know, just to make sure I am "squeaky clean."
 I dread it each and every time. HOWEVER the ramifications of NOT doing this are so not worth it. I like to keep my Colitis under control and happen to be on some big gun medications for it and do NOT want to go any further with other medications. I also (lucky girl that I am) have a 50% greater chance of developing colon cancer. So, that said, have YOU had your colonoscopy? We all should by age 50. Just one, not 5 or 6. And if you have a relative that has had colon cancer, well, get yourself into a good Gastroenterologist's office-pronto!!!

Here are some descriptions for you to help you further understand....
Have a great day!

This is from Miami Herald's newshound Dave
 Barry's Colonoscopy Journal:

 I called my friend Andy Sable, a gastroenterologist,
 to make an appointment for a colonoscopy. A few days later, in
 his office, Andy showed me a color diagram of the colon, a lengthy
 organ that appears to go all over the place, at one point
 passing briefly through Minneapolis
Then Andy explained the colonoscopy procedure to me in a thorough, 
 reassuring and patient manner. I nodded thoughtfully, but I didn't>
 really hear anything he said, because my brain was shrieking, quote,


 I left Andy's office with some written instructions, and a
 prescription for a product called 'MoviPrep,' which comes in a box
 large enough to hold a microwave oven. I will discuss MoviPrep in
 detail later; for now suffice it to say that we must never allow it
 to fall into the hands of America 's enemies

I spent the next several days productively sitting around being
 nervous. Then, on the day before my colonoscopy, I began my
 preparation. In accordance with my instructions, I
 didn't eat any solid food that day; all I had was chicken broth,
 which is basically water, only with less flavor. Then, in the evening, I
 took the moviPrep.
 You mix two packets of powder together in a one-liter plastic
 jug, then you fill it with lukewarm water. (For those unfamiliar
 with the metric system, a liter is about 32 gallons.
 Then you have to drink the whole jug. This takes about an hour,
 because MoviPrep tastes - and here I am being kind - like a mixture of
 goat spit and urinal cleanser, with just a hint of lemon.

 The instructions for MoviPrep, cle arly written by somebody with a
 great sense of humor, state that after you drink it, 'a loose,
 watery bowel movement may result.' This is kind of like saying that
 after you jump off your roof, you may experience contact with the
 MoviPrep is a nuclear laxative. I don't want to be too graphic,
 here, but: Have you ever seen a space-shuttle launch?
 This is pretty much the MoviPrep experience, with you as the
 shuttle. There are times when you wish the commode had a seat belt.
 You spend several hours pretty much confined to the bathroom,
 spurting violently. You eliminate everything. And then, when
 you figure you must be totally em pty, you have to drink another liter
 of MoviPrep, at which point, as far as I can tell, your bowels travel into 
 the future and start eliminating food that you have not even eaten yet.

 After an action-packed evening, I finally got to sleep. The next
 morning my wife drove me to the clinic. I was very nervous. Not only
 was I worried about the procedure, but I had been experiencing
 occasional return bouts of MoviPrep spurtage. I was thinking, 'What
 if I spurt on Andy?' How do you apologize to a friend for something
 like that? Flowers would not be enough.

 At the clinic I had to sign many forms acknowledging that I
 understood and totally agreed with whatever the heck the forms said.
 Then they led me to a room full of other colonoscopy people, where I
 went inside a little curtained space and took off my clothes and put
 on one of those hospital garments designed by sadist perverts, the
 kind that, when you put it on, makes you feel even more naked than
 when you are actually naked.

 Then a nurse named Eddie put a little needle in a vein in my left
 hand. Ordinarily I would have fainted, but Eddie was very good, and
 I was already lying down. Eddie also told me that some people put
 vodka in their MoviPrep. At first I was ticked off that I hadn't
 thought of this is, but then I pondered what would happen if y ou got
 yourself too tipsy to make it to the bathroom, so you were
 staggering around in full Fire Hose Mode. You would have no choice
 but to burn your house.

 When everything was ready, Eddie wheeled me into the procedure
 room, where Andy was waiting with a nurse and an anesthesiologist. I
 did not see the 17,000-foot tube, but I knew Andy had it hidden
 around there somewhere. I was seriously nervous at this point. Andy
 had me roll over on my left side, and the anesthesiologist began
 hooking something up to the needle in my hand. There was music
 playing in the room, and I realized that the song was 'Dancing
 Queen' by ABBA. I remarked to Andy that, of all the songs that could
 be playing during this particular procedure, 'Dancing Queen' had to
 be the least appropriate.
 'You want me to turn it up?' said Andy, from somewhere behind me.
 'Ha ha,' I said. And then it was time, the moment I had been
 dreading for more than a decade. If you are squeamish, prepare
 yourself, because I am going to tell you, in explicit detail,
 exactly what it was like.

 I have no idea. Really. I slept through it. One moment, ABBA was

 yelling 'Dancing Queen, feel the beat of the tambourine,' and the
 next moment, I was back in the other room, waking up in a very&n bsp;
 mellow mood. Andy was looking down at me a nd asking me
 how I felt. I felt excellent. I felt even more excellent when Andy
 told me that It was all over, and that my colon had passed with flying
 colors. I have never been prouder of an internal organ.

 ABOUT THE WRITER: Dave Barry is a Pulitzer Prize-winning humor
 columnist for the Miami Herald. On the subject of Colonoscopies...
 Colonoscopies are no joke, but these comments during the exam were
 quite humorous..... A physician claimed that the following are
 actual comments made by his patients (predominately male) while he
 was performing their colonoscopies:

 1. 'Take it easy, Doc. You're boldly going where no man has gone ; before!
 2. 'Find Amelia Earhart yet?'
 3. 'Can you hear me NOW?'
 4. 'Are we there yet? Are we there yet? Are we there yet?'
 5. 'You know, in Arkansas , we're now legally married.'
6. 'Any sign of the trapped miners, Chief?'
7 'You put your left hand in, you take your left hand out...'
8. 'Hey! Now I know how a Muppet feels!'
9. 'If your hand doesn't fit, you must quit!
 10. 'Hey Doc, let me know if you find my dignity.'
 11. 'You used to be an executive at Enron, didn't you?
And the best one of all.
12. 'Could you write a note for my wife saying that my head is not
up there?


  1. oh. my. gosh. Lynn, that was hysterical!! Absolutely the best article I've ever read about colonoscopy prep. May I please post it on my blog? I too, having colitis, am big on everyone having a C. at 50. I would love to help you spread the word! Let me know.
    Also, I need your mailing address. I have the PERFECT card for you, sweetie!
    xoxo, jan

  2. I LOVE Dave Barry! Thanks for sharing, Lynn. I'm officially not hungry anymore.

  3. OK, Lynn. Thanks to you, I am scheduled. Boy, the hardest thing was finding something that went with Jud's schedule. Hope that it all goes well and that you are doing ok. I really know so little about colitis. I must do my research!

    That was a really funny article, too! Thanks for a great laugh!


  4. Love your blog. You are a very artistic lady and love your crafts. I can identify with you, my son suffers with u.c. Wish they could find a cure. Would love you to stop by my blog and see what you think.


  5. Are you better today?


  6. Got my first one this year! Yep. That was a REAL treat let me tell ya! LOL. I'm kidding. Was not so bad. You should make them let you take the Mira-Lax with Gatorade...is not so evil. LOL. The only joy out of the whole day of prep...popsicles! :D