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Colonoscopy Concerns

3 Jul 2021 16:12

Hello. Hoping an endoscopy professional is around or others with similar experiences. 

I have a two week rule colonoscopy in a few days after they found distal uptake on a PET CT when they were trying to diagnose something else. I have typical symptoms, bleeding etc.

Anyway, I'm not anxious about possible outcome/results - pragmatic person - but I do feel anxious about the colonoscopy. Firstly I was sexually abused/exploited in my teens and have PTSD, so intimate procedures and exams are tough for me. I've requested that a woman is in the room; I can't get a female endoscopist quickly enough so I'll have to accept a man. I'm also autistic and struggle with being touched and sensory things. Plus I have long term IBS and can get extremely painful colic, and in a previous barium enema years ago I was in agony afterwards from all the air they pumped in, which I know they do for this, too. They say I'll be sedated to an extent, but I'd ideally like to be so stoned and have enough pain relief that I don't even know it's happening. 

I hate feeling like I'm being difficult or making a fuss when I'm in hospital because I know people are stressed and busy, but I'm dreading it and want to advocate for myself without feeling like I'm being annoying or difficult. 

Anyone else have similar issues who had a colonoscopy, or a professional who can advise? Thanks so much. 

Colonoscopy Concerns

4 Jul 2021 17:31 in response to pineapple9

Just giving this a little bump with only a couple of days to go. I'd so appreciate some advice. Happy

Colonoscopy Concerns

5 Jul 2021 13:03 in response to pineapple9

Hi Pineapple, I'm sorry I can't give you any advice, but I'm having a 2ww endoscopy and colonoscopy tomorrow following anaemia, 1 episode of bright red blood in the toilet and a positive fit test.

I'm really worried about the procedure and the results

I'm sure someone will come along with some great advice soon, but best wishes to you x

Colonoscopy Concerns

5 Jul 2021 17:17 in response to LouiseB2021

Hi Louise, thanks so much for replying. How is your prep going? I know it doesn't help the nerves, but there are other, more common things that could be causing your symptoms. And if it is the news you don't want - at least you'll have that information and can take action. You got this. I'll be thinking of you xo

Colonoscopy Concerns

6 Jul 2021 11:43 in response to pineapple9

Hi Pineapple,

Dont know if youve had your procedure yet, but I had my first colonoscopy in March.

Worried myself crazy beforehand, but it turnrd out to be a total breeze.

I, like you beforehand wanted to be out for the count, but elected for a pre-med. This was a mix of Midazolam and Fentanyl, and it was great. Felt really calm focussed and in a happy place. DEFINITELY NO PAIN, and was totally engrossed watching on the big monitor. My results were not good though as they found a tumour, but the procedure itself was nothing. Ive had more uncomfortable scale and polish at the dentist.

There are always female nurses present, and these people are supremely skilled professionals.Dont worry.

You'll  be fine...honest.

Colonoscopy Concerns

11 Sep 2021 11:03 in response to DrLaw

Hi, glad to hear that your colonoscopy went well and hope that your tumour can be treated successfully.  With regards to the midazolam, did you feel away with the fairies or were you able to converse with the staff and take in what was happening?  I want to be able to be part of the discussion if they do find anything.

Colonoscopy Concerns

11 Sep 2021 13:01 in response to toothfairy675

The Midazolam/Fentanyl pre-med was a really excellent choice. Administered via a fine gauge butterfly needle into a vein on the back of my hand, so expertly done, I barely felt it. There was absolutely no wave of euphoria, no dizziness or drugged groggy all!

Felt really calm and focused, completely lucid, and it just dissipated all my tension and anxiety. As I say, felt in a really good happy place. Was fully able to converse with the consultant during the procedure and watch the proceedings on a huge colour monitor.

The procedure itself was completely painless, even the removal of polyps. Didn't feel the endoscope internally either, just a mild pulling/pushing sensation around my anus....which was nothing. 

My consultant used a water technique to clearly see the bowel and used a very slender endoscope, ... completely unlike the pictures I had worried myself stupid with, of an ominous instrument resembling a black garden hose.  Medical technology has moved on dramatically in this area.  The worst part of colonoscopy is the 3 day bowel prep you do at home... its horrible.... but necessary.

I needed bowel surgery and had, I'm told 24 inches of decending colon removed.

This was done on the NHS with a laparoscopic technique done robotically. 

7 hour op in my case, and no colostomy. Had a magic surgeon lady, who I'll be forever grateful to.

Was discharged from hospital just 4 days later, and doing ok now.


Colonoscopy Concerns

11 Sep 2021 14:05 in response to DrLaw

Thank you so much for your reply and hope that your prognosis is excellent.   However, that is a lot of bowel and done laproscopically is amazing!   Thnak you for detailed description of the pre med.  I was a dental hygienist for many years and worked in a hospital where phobic patients were sedated.  They were certainly not lucid.  They were really out of it!  They could respond but only just and had there been a fire etc, they would have had to be carried out.  Just this side of a GA, it seemed.   I am glad the colonoscopes are slimmer than some of the ones I have seen which must be the older versions (eye-watering!)  I am not looking forward to the procedure mainly because of the fear of what they may find.  However, my family and I have had cancer and all lived to tell the tale, so it doesn't scare me like it would some.   Best wishes for the future.

Colonoscopy Concerns

11 Sep 2021 17:22 in response to toothfairy675

You'll need to interpret what "GA" means.

I'm not sure if my pre-med was a single shot or pump delivered, but I was mentally sharp as a razor and very alert throughout, but completely calm at the same time.... and I tell you, it was a surreal experience seeing your own insides live on a monitor screen.

I had debated with myself beforehand whether to watch or not, and had decided NOT....mainly because like you I was frightened with what might appear on screen. But when push came to shove, I couldn't resist, as I was in an almost sitting-up position, and the monitor was right in front of me. Time also just flew by when I was watching.  I did see some things that upset me, and a quietness fell on the room when they appeared, so I knew it was serious then, but the pre-op meds helped calm me. These visions came to haunt me later on while I was waiting many weeks for an op date, but in retrospect I'm glad I watched as it put things in perspective, and helped me understand my condition much much better, which took the frighteners off to a huge degree.  The hauntings have all gone now too like my tumour. .... so it's only temporary. 

I had a month wait for my colonoscopy and was warned by my GP beforehand, NOT to go private, which turned out to be good advice. This is because the NHS here in Scotland has state of the art equipment, and is much better placed to handle all outcomes and any follow-on disciplines deemed necessary.

Private practices on the other hand tend to be under-funded and have old antiquated clapped out equipment, and will charge you a small fortune if things get complicated. Also, as I shockingly discovered earlier, the NHS is very unwilling to pick up the pieces after you've gone private. All the medical info they generate, scans, test results etc, isnt available to the NHS after the event, which leads to a repetition of procedures etc.

The keyhole surgery was fantastic.

I just had 5 tiny incisions dotted about my abdomen, all only about 1 centimeter long, and a bigger one about 7 cm long at the pubis line.

No stiches. .. all sealed with superglue.

Bowel recovery back to any semblance of normal though was another matter.

The colonoscopy was a doddle though .. don't worry.


Colonoscopy Concerns

11 Sep 2021 18:15 in response to DrLaw

... also meant to say toothfairy675, the great thing about Colonoscopy is that not only can they visualise the problem precisely, they can often (for small yet seriously worrying problems like polyps, bleeding or otherwise), treat you there and then !

Takes 30 minuites, it's all over, it's painless,  and you're sorted !

If I'd known earlier, what I know now, I'd have elected for an annual colonoscopy years ago.

It's a life saver.

Colonoscopy Concerns

11 Sep 2021 18:53 in response to DrLaw

Hi, sorry GA is general anaesthetic.  I thought you were medical because of your detailed description of the sedation etc.  I am very happy to watch on the monitor.  I had a major op done with a spinal block and no sedation and watched the whole thing on the operating light and was talked through by the surgeon.  I am also prepared to hear bad news as have had that a few times and survived!  I have never thought of going privately.  First of all, I can't afford it and secondly, as you say, most of them  are fur coat and no knickers kind of places - look wonderful on the surface but don't have the equipment that the NHS does and if anything goes wrong, you are straight away to the NHS hospital.  In my personal experience, Scotland does have very good hospitals in my personal experience.  Thanks for all your input.  

Colonoscopy Concerns

12 Sep 2021 13:14 in response to toothfairy675

Thanks for explaining. I do have a medical background and guessed you meant general anaesthesia,  but acronyms abound and can mean many different things and vary geographically.

Hadn't heard the fur coat and no knickers saying for a long time, gave me a laugh and very apt !

Hope it all goes well for you, and let us know how it went, as a lot of people have concerns over this procedure, and I'm sure would appreciate your feedback.

Best wishes.

Colonoscopy Concerns

13 Sep 2021 20:14 in response to LouiseB2021

Hi Louise, hope your well? Just wondering how your results turned out and wishing you the best