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Preparing for your Procedure at an Endoscopy Center

Please read through and complete these steps before your procedure. It is important to follow all steps prior to your scheduled procedure time.

The following instructions are standard for most procedures. Please follow your doctor’s instructions if they vary from these.

What can I eat and drink before my colonoscopy or endoscopy procedure?

3 days before your procedure 
  • Eat foods low in fiber such as white rice, fish, white bread, chicken.
  • Avoid high fiber foods such as whole-grain breads, cereals, granola, nuts, oatmeal, corn, seeded foods, pepper, beans, vegetables, fruits, juice with pulp.
1 day before your procedure 
  • Maintain a clear liquid diet the entire day, starting when you wake up in the morning. A liquid is clear if you can see through it. Examples are water, carbonated and non-carbonated soft drinks, clear sports drinks, apple juice, beef/chicken/vegetable broth, Jell-O, Italian ice, ice pops. Do not drink or eat anything red, orange, or purple.
  • Liquids to avoid include milk, cream, oat, soy, or almond milk, energy drinks, orange or pineapple juice, smoothies/shakes and alcoholic drinks.
  • If you are instructed to take medications, take with a sip of water. 
  • You must not have anything else by mouth including candies, mints, gum, lozenges, or similar substances for at least two hours prior to arrival.

What should I bring with me on the day of my procedure?

  • Bring your insurance card and ID with you to the hospital.
  • Please leave all jewelry and valuables at home.

What can I do to get myself ready for my procedure?

  • If you are having a colonoscopy, remember to pick up your bowel prep at your pharmacy the week of your procedure. 
  • If you are having an endoscopy, you will be asked to stop eating or drinking before midnight. Please check with your doctor if you have any questions about stopping or holding any medications the morning of your procedure.
  • A nurse will call you a few days before your procedure to review your medical history, medications and review how to take your bowel prep.
  • It is recommended that a responsible adult assist you after your procedure. This person should be able to stay with you or check on you after the procedure, provide light help and watch for any possible symptoms.
  • You need to arrange for someone to provide transportation.
    You may not drive yourself home after your procedure. A responsible adult must accompany you in taking a car, cab, bus, train or van.
  • Wear comfortable clothes that are easy to put on after your procedure.
  • While prepping, stay near a toilet. You will have frequent diarrhea, this is normal.
  • Nausea and vomiting are rare. If it occurs, try walking, rinsing your mouth or brushing your teeth. This usually helps.
  • It is important to follow all instructions carefully. You will know your prep has worked when the stool coming out is yellow, light, liquid and clear — like urine. Poor or inadequate preparation may result in cancellation of the procedure and having to repeat the preparation and procedure at a later date.
  • Call your physician’s office before your procedure if you do not feel well or develop any signs of illness, cold, fever, sore throat, chest pain or difficulty breathing.

Medication Instructions

  • If you are taking blood thinners (including aspirin), it is extremely important that you follow your doctor’s instructions to see if you should continue these medications or stop them before the procedure. Consult your prescribing doctor if you are on blood thinners such as Coumadin, Plavix, Dabigatran, Rivaroxaban.
  • Stop taking iron, supplements, ibuprofen, etc. for one week prior to procedure.
  • If you are diabetic, speak to your doctor before preparing for your procedure.

Arrival Time

You will receive a call and/or text message after 2 pm the day before your procedure to inform you what time you should arrive. If your procedure is scheduled for a Monday, you will receive your call or message the Friday before.



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