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After Upper GI Series

Medically reviewed by Last updated on Jan 5, 2023.


Seek care immediately if:

  • You do not have a bowel movement for 2 days after this test.
  • You have severe abdominal pain.

Contact your healthcare provider if:

  • You have severe constipation.
  • You cannot pass gas.
  • You have a fever.
  • You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.


  • Laxatives may help relax and loosen your intestines to help you have a bowel movement.
  • Take your medicine as directed. Contact your healthcare provider if you think your medicine is not helping or if you have side effects. Tell your provider 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.

Bowel movements:

The barium liquid may cause your bowel movements to turn a gray or white color for 48 to 72 hours after the test.

Drink liquids as directed:

Ask your healthcare provider how much liquid to drink each day and which liquids are best for you. Liquids will help flush the barium from your system and prevent or help relieve constipation.

Eat high-fiber foods:

This may help decrease constipation by adding bulk to your bowel movements. High-fiber foods include fruit, vegetables, whole-grain breads and cereals, and beans.

Follow up with your healthcare provider as directed:

You may need to return to go over the results of your test. Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.

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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.

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.