My Sigmoidoscopy experience

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My Sigmoidoscopy experience

Postby jay1975 » 01 Aug 2015, 10:38

Hey everyone. I had this procedure two days ago. I know many people on this forum have had or will have this procedure at some point, so I wanted to tell my experience. My primary care doc gave me a referral for this procedure as a result of the presence of blood. His reasoning was that it was most likely from the AF, but wanted to be sure nothing more serious was going on.

For seven days prior to the procedure, I wan't allowed aspirin/ibuprofen type pain medications (tylenol was OK). One day prior to the procedure was a liquid only diet (beef/chicken broth, apple juice, water, gatoraid, etc). At 9AM I had to take 3 ducolax, and at 3PM I had to drink 10oz bottle of magnesium citrate. By early evening my BM's were completely liquid.

The procedure itself was performed by an RN and an assistant. The RN was obviously very experienced with the procedure and she was sensitive to what I was going through. Also, it was helpful that she was the sort of gentle "grandmotherly" type that talked in a calming fashion. The assistant was a 30-ish woman, also very nice.

This first thing I would say about the procedure itself was that if it weren't for the fissure, it would be almost completely uneventful. The RN began by performing a digital exam, which was quit painful. I told her that given the pain level, it was unlikely that I would be able to continue with the procedure. She agreed and suggested applying lidocaine. This helped immensely, and we were able to continue with the procedure, but there was still pain.

Obviously, I couldn't see the actual procedure, but they basically insert about 24 inches of flexible tubing with a camera attached. Also, this device can inject air to expand the colon so they can see, and also has a way of injecting a stream of water so they can clear off areas of interest to take pictures.

The most discomforting part of the procedure was how they injected air. It was the sensation of having really bad gas. During this time I still felt the pain from the AF, and that was bad, but not to the point of being undoable. It's one of those types of discomforts that it you fight it, it gets worse, but if you just sort of "give in" to it and try to relax and breath carefully, then you'll be just fine.

After a few minutes I "adjusted" to the sensation and it was no longer distressing. There was a TV monitor just above my head, and the RN said I could watch if I wanted, which was interesting.

The procedure ended as quick as it began. I don't think it lasted for more than five minutes. Immediately afterwards, I spend the next several minutes passing gas, which was actually just the air that they had been injecting during the procedure.

They were able to readily identify the AF. Also, they found a non-cancerous polyp (very common). Because of the polyp (and also because I'm turning 50yo soon), I'm getting a referral for a complete colonoscopy, during which they will remove the polyp.

So, based on my experience, if anyone has this procedure in their future, I would say not to worry. I was glad I had it done and now can move forward.
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Re: My Sigmoidoscopy experience

Postby Savaici » 01 Aug 2015, 13:20

Had the same procedure with exact same results, only that mine was done by a CRS Fellow. :cheers:
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Re: My Sigmoidoscopy experience

Postby jay1975 » 01 Aug 2015, 13:26

Savaici wrote:Had the same procedure with exact same results, only that mine was done by a CRS Fellow. :cheers:


Hey Saviaci. Did they also find any polyps ? I'm wondering if you later needed to have a colonoscopy.
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Re: My Sigmoidoscopy experience

Postby Savaici » 01 Aug 2015, 20:04

No polyps, and they said that apart from hemorrhoids that was it. They wanted me to have a colonoscopy, but I did not have one.
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