Colonoscopic Polypectomy

WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW:

Colonoscopic Polypectomy (Aftercare Instructions) Care Guide

  • Colonoscopic polypectomy is surgery to remove colorectal polyps. Colorectal polyps are small lumps of tissue in the lining of the colon and rectum. Some polyps, such as hyperplastic polyps, are usually benign (noncancerous) and may not cause any symptoms. Other polyps, such as adenomatous polyps, may develop into cancer (tumor). The colon and rectum are also called the large bowel. They are part of the digestive system in the lower part of the abdomen (stomach). The digestive system is where food is swallowed and broken down. The colon is the first section of the large bowel where stool (bowel movements) form. The rectum is the last part of the large bowel where stool stays before leaving the body.
    Picture of a normal digestive system


  • In a colonoscopic polypectomy, your caregiver uses a colonoscope, which is a soft, bendable tube with a light and tiny camera on the end. Special tools may be passed through a channel (tunnel) in the colonoscope to remove polyps. How colorectal polyps will be removed depends on the type, shape, size, and location of the polyps. They may be removed by snaring (lassoing them) with a wire loop that cuts and burns them off. If they are small, they may just be burned off. Polyps may be removed one tiny piece at a time if they are large, or in one piece if they are small. With colonoscopic polypectomy, colorectal polyps may be removed, your symptoms relieved, and colorectal cancer may be prevented.

INSTRUCTIONS:

Take your medicine as directed:

Call your primary healthcare provider if you think your medicine is not working as expected. Tell him if you are allergic to any medicine. Keep a current list of the medicines, vitamins, and herbs you take. Include the amounts, and when, how, and why you take them. Take the list or the pill bottles to follow-up visits. Carry your medicine list with you in case of an emergency. Throw away old medicine lists.

  • Antibiotics: This medicine is given to help treat or prevent an infection caused by bacteria.

  • Pain medicine: You may need medicine to take away or decrease pain.

    • Learn how to take your medicine. Ask what medicine and how much you should take. Be sure you know how, when, and how often to take it.

    • Do not wait until the pain is severe before you take your medicine. Tell caregivers if your pain does not decrease.

    • Pain medicine can make you dizzy or sleepy. Prevent falls by calling someone when you get out of bed or if you need help.

  • Stool softeners: This medicine makes it easier for you to have a bowel movement. You may need this medicine to treat or prevent constipation.

Ask for information about where and when to go for follow-up visits:

For continuing care, treatments, or home services, ask for more information.

Prevent constipation:

High-fiber foods, extra liquids, and regular exercise can help you prevent constipation. Examples of high-fiber foods are fruit and bran. Prune juice and water are good liquids to drink. Regular exercise helps your digestive system work. You may also be told to take over-the-counter fiber and stool softener medicines. Take these items as directed.

Eat healthy foods:

Choose healthy foods from all the food groups every day. Include whole-grain bread, cereal, rice, and pasta. Eat a variety of fruits and vegetables, including dark green and orange vegetables. Include dairy products such as low-fat milk, yogurt, and cheese. Choose protein sources, such as lean beef and chicken, fish, beans, eggs, and nuts. Ask how many servings of fats, oils, and sweets you should have each day, and if you need to be on a special diet.

Drinking liquids:

Adults should drink about 9 to 13 cups of liquid each day. One cup is 8 ounces. Good choices of liquids for most people include water, juice, and milk. Coffee, soup, and fruit may be counted in your daily liquid amount. Ask your caregiver how much liquid you should drink each day.

Rest:

Rest when you feel it is needed. Slowly start to do more each day. Return to your daily activities as directed.

CONTACT A CAREGIVER IF:

  • You have a feeling of being too full or bloated.

  • You have a fever.

  • You have nausea (upset stomach) or vomiting (throwing up).

  • You are unable to have a BM.

  • You have questions or concerns about your surgery, condition, or care.

SEEK CARE IMMEDIATELY IF:

  • You have problems having a bowel movement or passing urine.

  • Your abdomen becomes tender and hard.

  • Your stools are black or have blood in them.

  • You have chest pain or trouble breathing that is getting worse over time.

  • You suddenly feel lightheaded and have trouble breathing.

  • You have new and sudden chest pain. You may have more pain when you take deep breaths or cough. You may cough up blood.

  • Your arm or leg feels warm, tender, and painful. It may look swollen and red.

Copyright © 2012. Thomson Reuters. All rights reserved. Information is for End User's use only and may not be sold, redistributed or otherwise used for commercial purposes.

The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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