Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Colonoscopy . . . oh joy!

Just had the “consultation” for a colonoscopy that is now scheduled for June. “Consultation” means the doc gives me a warning that anything she does up in my innards could cause a rip, a tear or death!

And then she hands me over to her assistant who gives me the dreaded PREP INSTRUCTIONS. Well, actually not quite that fast. Doc is great and gave me all the time I needed to ask questions, which I did . . . although not all of them were pertinent to the colonoscopy. 

She was gracious, for example, when I asked her if her hair was longer when I was in for the consult several years ago. It was, and her current do is great looking. That’s me . . . always digging deeper into the serious, important issues of the moment.

In my previous experiences, the consult was the only time I saw her until the followup office visit. Oh, except the last one. I had forgotten that one of the six or seven pills I take every day is that darn baby aspirin. So on the BIG DAY, I put on the standard hospital gown (the gown that my 91-year-old mother insists on telling everyone was designed by Dr. Seymour Butts). Doc came in to explain personally that I had to get dressed, go home and come back after I had gone a week without taking aspirin. Danger of bleeding! Duh, Linda!

On the actual BIG DAY, I once again donned the hospital fashion wear. The anesthesiologist came by for an informative chat about how he had ordered 1) something to help me relax and 2) following that a light anesthesia once they took me in for the colonoscopy. Then a nurse came in and gave me that “something” in my IV to “relax me just a little.” Define "a little," please!

For both of my previous colonoscopies, I have relaxed so much that I don’t remember anything until the recovery room and my husband’s voice floating into my consciousness with offers of help to get me dressed so we could go home. That suits me just fine!

Of course, the day before the BIG DAY is the PREP. Humor columnist Dave Barry’s description nails the prep day. Thanks to husband Walter for pointing me to Susie B’s post featuring an excerpt from Barry’s column “A journey into my colon -- and yours.”

I actually liked the original, longer version published Feb. 22, 2008, in the Miami Herald. In addition to the prep account, it chronicles his journey toward the decision to have that first procedure. You can read it here.

Warning: Dave can get graphic, gross, crude and side-splitting funny, so beware. This Barry classic made me whoop until eyes got leaky. I had trouble seeing enough to finish the column. But I didn’t split anything this time and safely finished. You may not want to miss the finish either.

You may not want to miss your own colonoscopy either. And that is no laughing matter.


  1. My husband and I both should get this done, especially him, because his dad had polyps... but of course, he's stubborn as a mule when it comes to having any medical procedures done--and he works in the healthcare profession!

    I read Dave Barry's column, and you were right, it was hilarious.

  2. superb post and tooo funny. i did go to the other blog and read that and thanks for my funny of the day. i love dave barry and he out did himself

  3. How timely. I had my first colonoscopy last year, and the prep was the worst part. I had heard so many awful things I thought I would die of fear before I got there. I saw the Dave Berry article, and you are correct the longer version was funnier. Dianne

  4. Well, of course I read the entire Barry article, because I have always loved Dave Barry. I used to look forward to reading his column in the paper evey Sunday. And was very ticked off when he retired the column to concentrate more on books. This was hilarious!!! And you are brave not only for doing the colonoscopy, but for writing about it. Very tastefully done, are you sure you're not related to Dave?

  5. Dave Barry's version is one of the funniest things I have ever read. I always send it to anyone comtemplating the procedure.
    I chuckled at your recollections also.

  6. I'm getting ready for it myself. sighhh. I actually don't mind the procedure or even the recovery, but the prep .... arghhhh. Even Dave Barry can't make that OK, in my opinion!

  7. What is so special about your colon that you have to have a series of colonoscopies? There's obviously something up there, THEY 'd like to enjoy repeatedly.

    Still, now that you know what to expect, next time you won't bat an eyelid or anything else.

    I often say when people ask how I am: I keep taking the pills (incl. the baby aspirin), it seems to do the trick. I'm still here, aren't I?

    This is a very funny post about a serious matter.

    Thank you for your appreciative comments to my good week post.
    As a fellow ditherer I can understand that it took you a while to comment. Can't be too hasty about this sort of thing, can we now?

  8. the procedure itself is fine. It's the day before that almost killed me.

  9. Nope no fun at all!

    Thanks for sharing

  10. Wonderful way of looking at the inspection of the colon - made me laugh a lot. Have had the examination done a couple of times myself - not an easy preparation, thankfully modern drugs make the colonoscopy itself less traumatic than it once was. All good wishes.