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WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
A colonoscopy is a procedure to examine the inside of your colon (intestine) with a scope. Polyps or tissue growths may have been removed during your colonoscopy. It is normal to feel bloated and to have some abdominal discomfort. You should be passing gas. If you have hemorrhoids or you had polyps removed, you may have a small amount of bleeding.
Seek care immediately if:
- You have a large amount of bright red blood in your bowel movements.
- Your abdomen is hard and firm and you have severe pain.
- You have sudden trouble breathing.
Call your doctor if:
- You develop a rash or hives.
- You have a fever within 24 hours of your procedure.
- You have nausea and vomiting.
- You feel anesthesia effects greater than 24 hours.
- You have not had a bowel movement for 3 days after your procedure.
- You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.
After your colonoscopy:
- Do not lift, strain, or run until your healthcare provider says it is okay.
- Rest as much as possible. You have been given medicine to relax you. Do not drive or make important decisions for at least 24 hours. Return to your normal activity as directed.
- Relieve gas and discomfort from bloating by lying on your left side with a heating pad on your abdomen. You may need to take short walks to help the gas move out. Eat small meals until bloating is relieved.
If you had polyps removed:
For 7 days after your procedure:
- Do not take aspirin.
- Do not go on long car rides.
Help prevent constipation:
- Eat a variety of healthy foods. Healthy foods include fruit, vegetables, whole-grain breads, low-fat dairy products, beans, lean meat, and fish. Ask if you need to be on a special diet. Your healthcare provider may recommend that you eat high-fiber foods such as cooked beans. Fiber helps you have regular bowel movements.
- Drink liquids as directed. Adults should drink between 9 and 13 eight-ounce cups of liquid every day. Ask what amount is best for you. For most people, good liquids to drink are water, juice, and milk.
- Exercise as directed. Talk to your healthcare provider about the best exercise plan for you. Exercise can help prevent constipation, decrease your blood pressure and improve your health.
Follow up with your doctor as directed:
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.
Learn more about Colonoscopy (Discharge Care)
Symptoms and treatments
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