Flexible Sigmoidoscopy

WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW:

A flexible sigmoidoscopy is a procedure to look inside your rectum and sigmoid colon. The sigmoid colon is the lower part of your intestines, closest to your rectum. Caregivers insert a sigmoidoscope into your rectum. This is a soft, bendable tube with a light and tiny camera on the end. Pictures of your colon appear on a monitor during the procedure. A flexible sigmoidoscopy may help diagnose colon diseases, inflammation, polyps (growths), or infections.

INSTRUCTIONS:

Medicines:

  • Pain medicine: You may be given medicine to take away or decrease pain. Do not wait until the pain is severe before you take your medicine.

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

  • Take your medicine as directed. Call your healthcare provider if you think your medicine is not helping or if you have side effects. Tell him if you are allergic to any medicine. Keep a list of the medicines, vitamins, and herbs you take. Include the amounts, and when and why you take them. Bring the list or the pill bottles to follow-up visits. Carry your medicine list with you in case of an emergency.

Follow up with your primary healthcare provider as directed:

Ask when you should expect the results from your procedure. Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.

Prevent constipation:

  • Eat a variety of healthy foods: Healthy foods include fruits, vegetables, whole-grain breads, low-fat dairy products, beans, lean meats, and fish.

  • Drink liquids as directed: Ask your primary healthcare provider how much liquid to drink each day and which liquids are best for you.

  • Exercise: Ask your primary healthcare provider about the best exercise plan for you.

Contact your primary healthcare provider if:

  • You have a fever.

  • You feel full or bloated.

  • Your signs and symptoms get worse.

  • You have nausea or vomiting.

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

Return to the emergency department if:

  • You are not able to have a bowel movement.

  • You have blood in your bowel movement.

  • Your vomit has blood or bile (yellow or green fluid) in it.

  • Your abdomen becomes tender and hard.

© 2014 Truven Health Analytics Inc. Information is for End User's use only and may not be sold, redistributed or otherwise used for commercial purposes. All illustrations and images included in CareNotes® are the copyrighted property of A.D.A.M., Inc. or Truven Health Analytics.

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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