colonoscopy and upper endoscopy at the same time

Edited , 75 users are following.

Last Friday I had a combined colonoscopy and endoscopy of the oesophogus, duodenum and stomach done at the same time. Leading up to the procedure I was absolutely terrified and spent hours looking for information from people who'd had it done so I thought I would share it for others who may have to have both or either of these investigations.

I am a 45 year old female. I was diagnosed with iron deficiency anaemia about a month ago and because of that my GP wanted me to go for a colonoscopy. Not until my appointment came through did I realise I was also having the upper endoscopy done at the same time. Both of these procedures were terrifying to me and it was hard to work out which I was most nervous about; something going down my throat or something where the sun don't shine!

I was sent some industrial strength laxatives with instructions on how to use them. Two days before I had to eat a low residue diet. In fact all I ate was white bread toasted. On the morning of the day before I was allowed some breakfast then only clear fluids (juice, water, black coffee/tea) from then onwards. At 2pm I had to take 10 senokot tablets. Nothing happened. At 4pm I had to mix one sachet of a powder (can't remember the name) with 8oz of hot water and wait half an hour before drinking it. Tasted very citrusy and ok at first but after a few mouthfulls it didn't taste too good but not as bad as some people describe. Nothing happened until about an hour or so later when I got quite severe stomach cramps and 'runs' to the loo! That was it from then; regular need to visit the loo with very little warning other than rumblings in the lower abdomen. I had to take a further sachet at 7pm. Apart from the first bout of severe cramps I had no pain; just exhausting regular visits to the loo until about midnight and a couple when I got up early in the morning of the day of the procedure.

The day of my appointment I cried all the way to the hospital (my partner came with me). I cried the whole time I was in the waiting room and when they were booking me in (check bp etc). I hadn't signed the consent form (which they'd sent with the appointment information) because I wanted to make sure that the Dr knew how terrified I was. He came to see me before I was taken to the procedure room (which was a sort of operating theatre) and promised me he would make sure I was well sedated (asleep!) before he started.

The nurse had put a canula for IV meds into the back of my hand. I walked into the procedure room ( still crying :roll: ). Before the sedation was given and because I was having the upper endoscopy aswell, the Dr sprayed my throat with a local anaesthetic (tastes like vodka mixed with banana), they had to give me this mouth piece which is there to protect your teeth from the scope; they also put a little sponge attached to a tube in your nostril which gives you oxygen while you're sedated. The Dr started putting in the IV sedation which was midazolam and a narcotic pain relief called fentanyl. I told him it wasn't working and he assured me it was; he was right as I have no memory or knowledge of the upper endoscopy; I have a very vague recollection of waking up during the colonoscopy; I was aware it was very uncomfortable but felt disasociated from the pain and more interested in the image on the television screen from the camera! They must've given me more meds because the next thing I know I was waking up in recovery feeling euphoric with relief because they were telling me it was all over :P

I was then allowed to sleep for an hour when they woke me up offering tea and biscuits. They asked me to try walking to the loo and back to make sure I wasn't going to keel over then took me (with my partner) in to a private room to give me the test results. They like you to have someone with you for this part because the midazolam makes you forget things. For about 2 days afterwards I was very very tired and forgetful but am fine now (3 days later) and have been to work today no problems.

I'm sorry this is such a long posting, but it's so hard to find detailed descriptions of these things and for most people these sort of investigations are very fearful prospects and I wanted to share a relatively postive experience in the hope it might help someone else feel less anxious leading up to their appointment.

I hope never to have it done again; but if I do I will not be anywhere near as scared or worried as I was before this first one. I swear I was so scared I was awake most nights leading up to it worrying and googling it (you'll find plenty of horror stories which is why I thought I'd attempt to redress the balance with a positive one).

If you are scare and/or, like me, you have a low pain threshold, then don't be affraid to tell the staff and ask them to make sure you are well sedated.

The staff in the endoscopy unit were lovely and very very compassionate and supportive.

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  • Posted

    Thanks for sharing your experience. I´m due to have a colonoscopy next week and, of course, the minority of horror stories prey on your mind. I feel a lot better reading of your experience. Hope all is well with you.
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  • Posted

    Hi, I'm glad to see someone has posted a positive view of of these procedures, but I'm still a bit worried as I'm going to have to have a colonoscopy and endoscopy without sedation because I'm a single parent and have no one to look after the kids, 'I won't be needing the laxative as I'm scared sh**less' lol
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  • Posted

    I also had this procedure done today and was quite anxious - needn't have worried I felt no pain whatsoever. The spray in my mouth took effect immediately and my mouth felt numb. I remember the nurse asking me to lie on my left hand side, she told me I would soon feel drowsy. Vaguely remember a nurse asking me to lie on my back and the next thing I remember was a nurse asking did I feel O.K. and would I like a cup of tea and a sandwich - I literally felt no pain or discomfort. I may need to have a CT colonogram due to a twist in my bowel and I need to get some tablets from my GP for acid in my oesophagus (spelt wrong) but apart from that everything else was O.K. All this procedure was due to me having intermittent pain in my abdomen. The worst part about this procedure was the liquid I had to drink the night before. 2 litres in 4 hours, the first glass was bearable, but by the end I felt quite nauseous and I was still going to the loo at 8am the following morning.

    If I ever have to go through the same process again for whatever reason I will know there is nothing to feel anxious about. The whole procedure lasted about 1 1/2 hours from the spray in my mouth to recovery with a cup of tea and a sandwich.

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  • Posted

    Thanks for educated and simple to understand note
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  • Posted

    Hi, just read your post, having trawled through all the horror stories, came accross this site and your post, so joined.. I am in exactly the same position, and worrying myself silly, I am going for mine on Feb 1st 2014, I feel very reassured now having read your experience, thank you smile I hope my Doctors and Nurses are just as good, which I am sure they will be, I hope your results were favourable and you are well, I shall report back when mine is all done, still not looking forward to it. though!! .eeek rolleyes
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    • Posted

      Hi, I am too having same 2 procedures too on 31st Oct '14. Your message was very helpful in reassuring me as many positive ones have been on this site.  Was just wondering how you got on and truly hope it was all positive news for you. Best wishes. C. x
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  • Posted

    I am really dreading my endoscopy and colonoscopy, had endo before but not colonoscopy. Dreading the prep as well. Just want it over with now. My problem is today two days before prep i have bad diarrhoea do i still take the drinks sent or not ? Just worried as have a little one to think about. And very very scared about all of it. Cant sleep through worrying .
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  • Posted

    Stephy hope yours went well.

    I had my first colonoscopy today, I was dreading it and the prep. The prep took a while to kick and while wasn't pleasant it wasn't worse than a bad tummy bug (for me).

    The procedure I had was endoscopy and colonoscopy.

    The endo was traumatic just because there was so much going on- oxygen in my nose, mouth hard, endoscope etc that I panicked and freaked out but the nurses wee excellent and calmed me down.

    The colonoscopy was fine at first bit I experienced sever pain through out, mainly die to the fact my intestines are very twisty and long I was told, so I was crying and yelling ow a lot, again the staff were great and have it a rest for a bit then some more painkiller then started again, the consultant was also good at trying different positions to make it more comfortable. I had sedation but it didn't work on me so was wide awake, the nurse was great and held my hand and did deep breathing with me.

    It was not a nice experience but now it's all over I feel fine, and if it can detect something like cancer then I would go through it again as obviously in the long run a short period of pain is worth it to find out if there is a serious problem

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  • Posted

    I had both endoscopy and colonoscopy procedures at the same time i am being honest about this i would never try to scare any one with the comments below .

    I found both procedures very painfull even with sedation i panicked when the camera was pushed down my throat and had to be held down forcefully to insert correctly i sat upright when the sample was taken from my stomach .

    As for the Colonoscopy i woke up half way through shouting out in pain and had to be given more sedation to put me right under so procedure could be completed.

    I had these procedures three and a half weeks ago and to honest i have not felt well since still in pain and feel worse than before and still cant eat a decent meal or go to the Loo properly with out pain or some bleeding.

    Will never have either of these done again.

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  • Posted

    Hi everyone,

    I am due to have an endoscopy and colonoscopy on wednesday this week and I am completely terrified. I am worried about the moviprep i have to take and if i will make it to the hospital without having an accident the next day as its over an hour away! I am also concerned about the procedure as I had an endoscopy in 2009 and became very aware what was going on half way through and started panicing and thrashing around.

    Did anyone take moviprep the night before and were you ok to travel? I have to take the stuff at 5pm and 8pm and then my procedure is at 9:50 the next morning,

    So scared its unbelievable

     

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  • Posted

    Dear Cry Baby,

    Thanks SO much for your informative (and slightly comical) information about having an endoscopy and colonoscopy done the same day.  My Mother is in the same boat as you once were and your post calmed her down tremendously!

    It was very considerate of you to place this posting for others to see, because of all the googling you did.

    Sincerely,

    Pat in the U.S.

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  • Posted

    Hi

    I was just as terrified when I was told I needed a colonoscopy, I couldn't sleep, it occupied my every moment 24/7.  Despite folloiwing these discussions and reading how some people got through the procedure pain-free, mine wasn't.  It was agony, the sedative given was useless, and I yelled throughout the procedure. I was so embarrassed.  However, relief it was all over, I thought I would be given a prescription for my suspected ibs.  Not to be.  They found something suspicious.  The follow up with the consultant confirmed rectal cancer.  I have been beside myself with grief.  This all happened a few weeks ago, and I am now part way through my radiotherapy treatment.  Surgery is to follow next week.  I have gone from being a happy go lucky, positive sort of person to a quivering wreck, and what I hate most, short tempered with my family, although they understand.  I am now terrified about the surgery.  I had a meeting at the pre assessment clinic and was told not to worry about the surgery, it's the recovery that's the problem.  Now I am worried about that too.  I have followed these discussions which relate to people's colonoscopy fears.  But I would like to know if there is anyone who has been thro ugh surgery and could tell me what it's like.  Good or bad, I can take it on the chin!

    My reply to cry baby, I am so glad it's all now behind you (pardon the pun). I wish you good health, and hope you don't have to face this daunting experience again.

    From even bigger crybaby.

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