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The Days Before Your Colonoscopy

Properly preparing for your colonoscopy is critical for ensuring a successful procedure. Follow these instructions on what to do and what to expect in the days leading up to your large intestine exam.

4 Days Before

Starting when you wake up 4 days prior to your procedure, begin following a low fiber diet. Avoid foods high in fiber such as nuts, seeds, granola, or whole grain. See our low fiber and medication guide. You will continue following a low fiber diet until 1 day before your procedure.

Expect a call from outpatient surgery 1-2 days before your procedure.

1 Day Before

Starting when you wake up 1 day before your procedure, follow a clear liquid diet. Do not eat any solid foods until after your procedure has been completed. A clear liquid diet will help you stay well-hydrated.

The following are considered Clear Liquids:

  • Water, Black Coffee, Tea (NO cream/milk/dairy products)
  • Gatorade/Powerade, white fruit juice, lemonade without pulp
  • Carbonated beverages
  • Clear Broth or Bouillon
  • Popsicles (N O creamy pops or pops with fruit), Plain gelatin desserts (NO fruit added)
  • Hard Candy
  • AVOID a lot of artificial coloring as it can stain the wall of your colon!

Please avoid consuming products today that are the color red or purple as they will stain your colon.

How to Take Your Bowel Prep

You should have picked up two medications from your pharmacy:

  • 1 Bowel Prep Kit (SuPrep, SuTab, SuFlave, or Golytley)
  • 3 tablets of Zofran 4mg (Ondansetron 4mg) - anti-nausea medication (this is optional and not necessary to complete your procedure)
Comfort Tip

For comfort measures during your bowel prep, add a diaper rash ointment (Desitin) which can be found on the shelf at your local pharmacy or Vaseline to the perianal area. Use flushable baby wipes instead of toilet paper to decrease irritation related to prep.

Continue to Step 2: Colonoscopy Prep