What is a Colonoscopy?
The colonoscope is a long flexible tube, which can be inserted through the rectum and allows examination of the large intestine and if possible the last part of the small intestine. Through the colonoscope small tissue samples (biopsies) and polyps can be removed for pathological diagnosis.
Your doctor may want to perform a colonoscopy for a variety of diagnostic and therapeutic reasons.
Diagnostic indications include screening or surveillance for colon cancer, evaluating signs and symptoms suggestive of possible colonic or lower small bowel disease, assessing a response to treatment in patients with known colonic disease (eg, inflammatory bowel disease), and evaluating abnormalities found on imaging studies. Therapeutic indications include stricture dilation, stent placement, colonic decompression, and foreign body removal. In addition, abnormalities found during diagnostic procedures may require therapeutic intervention.
- The colon must be clean for the procedure to be accurate and complete.
- You will be given detailed instructions regarding the dietary restrictions to be followed and the cleansing routine (bowel preparation) to be taken the day prior to the procedure. Your age and medical history will influence the choice of bowel preparation used.
- If you are scheduled for a morning procedure you should have nothing to eat or drink, including water, from midnight the night before. If your procedure is scheduled for the afternoon (after 1pm) then you can have clear fluids prior to 7am but then nothing to eat or drink, including water.
- Medications: please discuss with you specialist, GP or contact our Centre for advice.
Click here to download the Colonoscopy preparation for a MORNING procedure
Click here to download the Colonoscopy preparation for a AFTERNOON procedure
- Please arrive at the center at your given appointment time.
- Please present your doctor’s referral to our reception staff, who will confirm your booking.
- You will be asked to fill in some paperwork providing us with your medical history and relevant personal details - Click Here to download the Admission Form.
- You will have a short wait in the waiting room.
- An Endoscopy Nurse will escort you to a consulting room where we will take further detailed history and explain your procedure. Please take this opportunity to ask any questions.
- You will then have a consultation by the Endoscopist & Anaesthetist.
- For colonoscopy you will be asked to change into a patient gown.
- You will then be escorted into theatre for your procedure.
- Your appointment time is your arrival time to be at our Centre and not your procedure time. You can expect to be at the Centre for 2 to 4 hours.
- We will usually ask you to complete and return the Admission Form prior to the day of your procedure so your health information can be reviewed by our nursing team.
- You must organize a responsible adult to take you home after your procedure as you are not able to drive or take a taxi by yourself for the remainder of the day. Public transport is not recommended even with the aid of an adult companion.
- We recommend that you are supervised by an adult for the first 24 hours following your procedure.
- Please leave all jewelry and valuables at home.
What to bring
- Your referral
- Your Health Insurance Membership details
- Any concession and Medicare cards
- Wear loose comfortable clothing and footwear
After the Procedure
- Following your procedure the nurses will monitor your progress in the recovery room.
- When you have recovered sufficiently the nurses will prepare you for discharge and the receptionist will contact your transport / companion.
You will require a responsible adult to escort you home and supervise you for the first 24 hours.
- After your discharge you should go home and rest.
- There may be a mild, temporary abdominal discomfort which can be relieved by walking around.
- You may eat and drink as normal unless advised otherwise.
- If biopsies were taken or a polyp removed, you may pass a small amount of blood.
- You should not drive a car or any other vehicle, or operate dangerous machinery for the remainder of the day, even if you feel unaffected.
- If you have severe or persistent abdominal pain, pass a large amount of blood or have any other concerns, you should seek urgent medical advice by either contacting your Specialist or GP or presenting yourself to your local hospital Emergency Department.
You can call our Nurse Unit Manager on the following after hours number 0418 335 144 if you have any concerns.