Instructions for Colonoscopy Bowel Preparation  

The bowel must be completely empty before your colonoscopy so that the risk of lesions being missed is minimised. You must drink all of the fluids in the instructions, and consume all of the laxatives given, even if you think your bowel may be clear earlier.

Best results are usually achieved with glycoprep. However if you struggle with drinking 3 or 4 liters of bowel prep, picoprep may be an alternative. If you have any questions or concerns please contact us - phone 09 925 4449

10 days prior to colonoscopy

  • If you are taking any blood thinning medication other than aspirin, and you have not already received instructions on their use prior to your appointment, please contact the nurse at Waitemata Endoscopy.
  • DO NOT stop taking anticoagulant medication unless instructed to by our nurses.
  • If you are taking diabetes tablets or insulin, please read the “Diabetes Management Advice During Colonoscopy Bowel Preparation” information sheet.
  • If you are taking prescribed medications for any other condition, please do not stop taking these at any time.
  • If you are pregnant or breastfeeding, please contact the nurse at Waitemata Endoscopy for advice.

5 days prior to colonoscopy

  • Stop taking Iron tablets (including any supplements containing iron).

3 days prior to colonoscopy

  • Start a low fibre diet using the attached dietary instruction sheet for reference

  • Avoid all foods with nuts, seeds and skins

  • Take your regular medications

2 days prior to colonoscopy

  • Continue the low fibre diet
  • Drink plenty of fluids
  • Take your regular medications

The day before your appointment:

  • You may have a low fibre breakfast then take 2 Bisacodyl laxative tablets with a large glass of water. The tablets are in a small plastic sachet stapled to the front of your instruction sheets.
  • Take your regular morning medications, unless instructed otherwise.
  • You may consume a liquid diet until midday (e.g. yoghurt, jelly, custard, clear soup).
  • Do not eat from 12 midday, until after your procedure, drink plenty of clear fluids only.
  • Drink at least 10 glasses of clear fluids during the day (see diet sheet for suggestions), in addition to your Glycoprep.
  • Drinking alcohol is not recommended.
  • Take your regular medication 1½ hours prior to beginning the Glycoprep or 1½ hours after completing the Glycoprep, to allow the medications time to be absorbed.
  • Prepare the Glycoprep by dissolving the contents of each sachet with 1 litre of water (to make a total of 3 litres if you were sent 3 sachets, or 4 litres if you were sent 4 sachets).
  • You may refrigerate this preparation if you want.
  • At 4pm start drinking the Glycoprep. You should drink a glass every 5-10 minutes, aiming to drink approximately a litre an hour.
  • You need to drink all except one litre of your Glycoprep preparation today (the final litre should be saved for tomorrow).
  • Glycoprep is a laxative designed to produce a watery stool and cleanse the bowel, therefore it is recommended that you are at home and close to a toilet when you start taking it.

The day of your appointment:

  • You must take the final 1 litre of Glycoprep, drinking one glass every 5-10 minutes, starting no later  than 3 hours prior to your appointment time.
  • E.g. if your appointment time is 7:30am, you will need to take the final litre commencing by 4:30am at the latest.
  • If you are concerned about finishing the preparation in time to travel to your appointment, you may commence the Glycoprep up to 4 hours prior to your appointment time.
  • ake your regular medication 1½ hours prior to beginning the Glycoprep-C or 1½ hours after completing the Glycoprep-C, to allow for the medications to be absorbed.
  • Do not drink any more fluids from 1 hour prior to your appointment time.
  • **If you are having a Gastroscopy and Colonoscopy, or an anaesthetist administered anaesthetic, do not drink any more fluids from 2 hours prior to your appointment time (ignore the nil-by-mouth instructions in the Gastroscopy pamphlet).
  • You will be at your appointment for approximately 2-3 hours.
  • If you are given a sedative for your procedure, it is important that you do not drive a car or operate heavy machinery for at least 12 hours after.
  • You must arrange for a responsible adult to collect you after your appointment.
  • For your safety, please remove all jewellery and watches prior to your appointment and leave them at home.
  • Do not bring any valuables, we do not have facilities to lock them up.

A few tips for during your bowel preparation:

  • Anal soreness may occur due to multiple bowel motions. You can apply Vaseline or other barrier cream to the anal area before starting the Glycoprep to minimise this.
  • The use of wet wipes (baby wipes) instead of toilet paper will also help.
  • Please drink plenty of water or other clear fluids to prevent dehydration.
  • The Glycoprep is not absorbed by your body so does not keep you hydrated.
  • If you suffer from nausea please contact your GP prior to starting your bowel preparation to get some anti-nausea medication to take an hour before your Glycoprep.
  • If the taste of the preparation becomes unpleasant, drinking the preparation through a straw may help. Or sucking on boiled sweets between drinking can also help.
  • If you feel bloated a short walk may help.
  • If you feel cold and shivery, wrap up warmly, and drink warm water.

Why Choose Our Service?

Top Rated

Top Rated

Auckland and New Zealand best gastroenterologists and surgeons providing the latest endoscopy care.

Integrated Care

Integrated Care

Our multi-disciplinary team approach means that we can better manage the full range of gastroenterology conditions, including complex and tertiary conditions.

Low costs

Low costs

Affiliated provider for Southern Cross Health Insurance. No or low out of pocket with all insurance companies. Afforable self funding.