What happens during a colonoscopy procedure?
A colonoscopy involves the use of a colonoscope—a long, thin, flexible instrument connected to a camera and video display
The colonoscope is inserted into the rectum and moved through the entire colon. If the healthcare provider notices anything
of concern during your colonoscopy
, a biopsy (removing a small amount of tissue to examine) may be performed.
A colonoscopy makes it possible to find and remove abnormal tissue growths without surgery. An abnormal tissue growth is
called a polyp
(pronounced pahl-ip). A colonoscopy is more accurate than all other methods to detect polyps and early
cancer. The ability to remove polyps during a colonoscopy is a major step toward the
prevention of colon cancer
The entire colonoscopy procedure usually takes less than an hour. Mild sedation is typically provided to relieve anxiety
and discomfort. For this reason, you will be required to have someone drive you home after the procedure. Following the
colonoscopy, you may experience bloating, which will quickly improve. Most patients can resume eating a regular diet
later that day.
People older than 50 years should undergo a colonoscopy every 10 years. If you have additional risk factors, healthcare
providers could recommend the procedure be completed more frequently.
Before a colonoscopy can be done, the bowel must first be thoroughly cleared of all stool—this process is called a
colonoscopy preparation or colon prep
for short. This is completed prior to the exam, as prescribed by your healthcare
Why do you need a bowel prep?
Learn about other colon cancer screening methods.
What puts you at risk for colon cancer?
Click to download important patient information about OsmoPrep.
Download Adobe Reader and Flash Player.
Important Safety Information about OsmoPrep
There have been rare, but serious reports of acute phosphate nephropathy in patients who received oral sodium phosphate products for colon cleansing prior
to colonoscopy. Some cases have resulted in permanent impairment of renal function and some patients required long–term dialysis. While some
cases have occurred in patients without identifiable risk factors, patients at increased risk of acute phosphate nephropathy may include those with
increased age, hypovolemia, increased bowel transit time (such as bowel obstruction), active colitis, or baseline kidney disease, and those using
medicines that affect renal perfusion or function (such as diuretics, angiotensin converting enzyme [ACE] inhibitors, angiotensin receptor blockers
[ARBs], and possibly nonsteroidal anti–inflammatory drugs [NSAIDs]).
It is important to use the dose and dosing regimen as recommended (PM/AM split dose).
Please see full Prescribing Information for OsmoPrep, including BOXED WARNING.
OsmoPrep® (sodium phosphate monobasic monohydrate, USP, and sodium phosphate dibasic anhydrous, USP) Tablets are indicated for cleansing
of the colon as a preparation for colonoscopy in adults 18 years of age or older. Considerable caution should be advised before OsmoPrep is used in
patients with severe renal insufficiency, congestive heart failure, ascites, unstable angina, gastric retention, ileus, severe chronic constipation,
bowel perforation, toxic megacolon, gastric bypass or stapling surgery, or hypomotility syndrome. Use with caution in patients with impaired renal
function, patients with a history of seizures or at higher risk of seizure, patients with higher risk of cardiac arrhythmias, known or suspected electrolyte
disturbances (such as dehydration), or people taking drugs that affect electrolyte levels. Patients with electrolyte abnormalities such as
hypernatremia, hyperphosphatemia, hypokalemia, or hypocalcemia should have their electrolytes corrected before treatment with OsmoPrep.
OsmoPrep is contraindicated in patients with a known allergy or hypersensitivity to sodium phosphate salts or any of its ingredients, and in patients with
biopsy–proven acute phosphate nephropathy. In clinical trials, the most commonly reported adverse reactions (reporting frequency >3%) were
abdominal bloating, nausea, abdominal pain, and vomiting. It is recommended that patients receiving OsmoPrep be advised to adequately hydrate before,
during, and after the use of OsmoPrep.