Colonoscopy Without Sedation

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I am writing this in the hope of reassuring a person that is preparing for a colonoscopy.

I am a woman in my mid thirties and have had a colonoscopy today without sedation and although offered, did not need the gas and air in the end either. The whole bowel was scoped.

I would best describe, the additional air, being put into the bowel to iron out the creases, as the scope goes round...as a discomfort type of pain that rises in intensity then lowers, that passed after about 10 seconds of beginning (I think that's how long gas and air takes to work). This discomfort/pain happened two or three times throughout.

I had two polyps removed. It was possible to watch on the 'tv' screen but I didn't opt for that.

(The NHS Endoscopist and the Nurse which I conversed with about the procedure itself and many other things throughout the procedure were fantastic).

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  • Posted

    I should also mention I watched on the tv screen for some of the procedure which was interesting to see but not when the polyps were removed.
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  • Posted

    I;m glad yours was OK - mine was not. The pain was indescribable and even the sedation made no difference.
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    • Posted

      Thank you jeanlyon. The same here. I had mine done yesterday. I am 62, and i opted for no sedation, but gas and air if i decided during the proceedure. I was in extreme pain from the first few minutes, and had to have the gas and air. My pain threshold is quite high, as i have had 4 children, and also had my leg crushed in a car crash 2 years ago, so i think i know something about pain. 

      Everything i had read, and been told, only ever mentioned " discomfort" and so i wasn't prepared for severe pain. Even with the gas and air, i was holding tightly to the nurse's hand for the first 10/15 minutes.

      I was told afterwards that everyone reacts differently, but i heard the comments of 2 different patients leaving after the proceedure, saying how painful it was, and they had been given the sedation/pain relief. 

      So ,... please be prepared !! I was not.

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    • Posted

      I had a colonoscopy 3 weeks ago. I was totally relaxed reading the leaflet which said mild discomfort only. I had excruciating pain as the scope went round the sigmoid bend worse than my labour which was a really difficult one, and had to ask them to stop. I was given no pain relief . Was offered entonox,but in a rather half hearted manner as if I shouldnt need anything. I nearly passed out in the room where I was getting dressed after the procedure and no-one explained why the pain had been so severe. I am seeing a gastro doctor in 2 weeks time and will ask them as really the investigation hasnt been completed. Good Luck everyone who has this done and I hope an answer can be found for those of us who have severe pain

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    • Posted

      Hi Helen:

      I'm sorry you experienced so much pain. A lot of times it has to do with the experience level of the individual operating the scope and whether they used the adult scope or the children's scope.

      A good operator should be able to traverse the three turns in the colon without letting the cable coil. It's that coiling that causes the patient pain.

      The other way to lessen the chance of that happening is by asking for someone with experience with the children's scope. The scope is smaller and easier on the adult colon.

      Regards,

      Raffie

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  • Posted

    For me I was is less pain this time compared to when I was sedated with the last one.

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  • Posted

    Had my colonoscopy a few years ago-and agreed to have the colonoscopy without sedation because I couldn't arrange for anyone to take me home afterwards-this is necessary if you are receiving sedation or anaesthesia.

    The pain I experienced was awful and after a few minutes I had to ask the consultant to stop-at that point I was clammy, sweating profusely and I could see from the pulse oxymetry monitor that my pulse rate was 160 BPM and felt I was going to pass out..

    Having been a nurse in acute care settings for over 25 years I knew that all of these indications were not normal however I had the presence of mind to halt the procedure when feeling unwell-the endoscopist and attending nurse seemed unconcerned and I believe would have carried on with the procedure.

    My point would be that however well meaning people might be in relating a positive experience of colonoscopy without sedation, everyone's experience will be different. I personally would not advise anyone to go ahead with the procedure without pain relief or sedation-healthcare professionals do not offer these on a whim but for good reason.

    Following my own experience I was offered a follow up appointment for colonoscopy where I received midazolam sedation and pethedine pain relief-I remember nothing else after this until the endoscopist gave me a tap on the shoulder to tell me the procedure was finished( about twenty minutes later).I was relaxed with no pain/discomfort.

    This time I was able to get a family member to come collect me afterwards.

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  • Posted

    I am 54 and just this morning had my first colonoscopy without sedation, the only thing you need to be brave for is the prep and drinking the Movi Prep. The procedure was a piece of cake. The doctor expalined everything he was going to do and It was not painful at all. If you have ever had an enema it felt like expansion bloating and releasing thats it. There was one turn that was a little uncomfortable but basically in one breath it was over. In my opinion there is no need to have sedation for this. My advice is that during the prep you drink alot of water in between, and while you are waiting for your next run to the toilet you put a hot pad or hot water bottle on your belly. It was very soothing. When I got home I massaged my belly passed some gas and was good as new. Took a nap with my hot pad and now I am back at work in just a few hours. No reason to support the drug companies. Find a doctor that will work with you and enjoy watching your colon on the big screen. I was very lucky all clear and healthy.
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    • Posted

      What horrible advice!  Ok its your opinion but don't tell someone its not necessary.  Its a disgusting barbaric procedure to begin with unless you're into that type of thing.  I've never had one and never will, but for those that do, use the sedationand have no memory of being voluntarily molested

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    • Posted

      Wow... I have that exact same fear... I know exactly how your feeling and your saying this out of anger, trust me I know. I have a colonoscopy appointment tomorrow and I'm already p****d at the thought of forfeiting all my rights and control of my body, and that the medical team is free to do what ever they please to my body whether it being raped, purposely or carelessly damaging my stomach or even sabatoging it, leaving instruments inside, or to taking pleasure in having full control of my body. I know feel so angry right now. And I don't trust people in general especially those who are put in such a position of power over the patient. Because as humans, we are more likely to abuse that kind of power. And I hate the thought of someone taking advantage of their patients when their "versed"

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    • Posted

      As long as it is YOUR colon being barbarically violated, I won't have any pain either.  But I will NEVER submit to such PAIN again.

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    • Posted

      You're entitled to your opinion (although limited since you haven't undergone this procedure,) but to disrespect another person for expressing their opinion (based upon first-hand experience) is rude, immature, disrespectful, and closed-minded. I have never met someone who, out of the blue, decided it would be a great idea to undergo a colonoscopy procedure. Usually, a medical professional has determined that it is medically necessary. Beginning at age 50, a colonoscopy is recommeded and is accomplished periodically thereafter. I suppose you could choose not to have a colonoscopy, but I believe you would potentially put yourself at greater risk of developing a serious condition. My dad and stepmom each had colon cancer, discovered by a colonoscopy. Blood work and routine exams did not indicate that either had cancer. Both had their cancer surgically removed, followed up with chemotherapy and radiation. Both, were eventually cancer free, so I would venture to say a colonoscopy saved their lives. That said, this discussion is about people sharing their experiences with or without sedation during a colonoscopy. Many have indicated that each person's experience is different. Since I do not choose to be sedated, I will undergo a colonoscopy without it next week. I appreciate the stories, insights, and experiences shared by those in this forum and I evaluated their input carefully before making my own decision. That's the advice I would give to you. Don't be hasty to judge others before you have the experience and facts to back it up.

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    • Posted

      Yes i am entitled to my opinion and i stick by it.  To have it done just because you turn 50 is ridiculous.if you have a family history than by all means get the test.  To do it without questioning it is absurd.
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    • Posted

      I think your idea of a colonoscopy a bit over the top after having my first one 18 months ago and discovering I had bowel cancer and dare I say it saving my life as it would not have been discovered otherwise. I have just had my second one yesterday as a follow up but this time it was preformed through my stoma in my stomach my dignity and my feeling were paramount both times. I find the use of the word raped offensive it is not done for a perverted sexually desire. You should lose your right to medical treatment and I hope you never suffer from been told you have cancer or any other life changing illness.   
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