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A Caution for Those Doing a Colonoscopy Prep

Freddd

Senior Member
Messages
5,184
Location
Salt Lake City
I just had my 3 year follow-up colonoscopy with a clean bill of health. However, the 36 hour plus prep time is a real problem for maintaining potassium levels. Without any significant food for 44 hours by the time I got out of there I found there was no way for me to have sufficient potassium. Clear liquids don't cut it and don't buffer the potassium enough to be able to take enough supplements and don't contain much potassium. I couldn't take most of my vitamins because I need food to tolerate them. I'm going to have to find a solution, maybe literally, next time so I don't get into real trouble. My blood pressure went up 50 points and the spasms and heart irregularities became nearly uncontrollable by the time I got out of there. I had to take metoclopramide (Reglan) to get my stomach and intestines during prep and after to keep things working.

I have had to take 300mgs of potassium every couple of hours to get things back under control after getting home a bit after 2 pm. It took about 10 hours to get the potassium up to where it needs to be to be able to go to bed, and I am still having some tendency to spasm. Perhaps inducing folate deficiency the next time will reduce the potassium need.
 

Lynn_M

Senior Member
Messages
208
Location
Western Nebraska
Freddd,
I suggest looking into WaterOz dietary supplements. They sell a Water of Life supplement and individual minerals, including potassium. The minerals are in ionic form, Angstrom-sized if I recall correctly, so highly water soluble, and placed in reverse osmosis water. The potassium one is 340 +/- ppm and the recommended serving is 1 oz daily. The bottle contents look like it is clear water, so it shouldn't be a problem consuming it if doing a colonoscopy prep.

WaterOz products are what I use for my daily mineral supplementation. The potassium WaterOz is a lot easier on my stomach than the pills or capsules. I take 5 different individual mineral supplements plus the Water of Life, which is made from ancient kelp beds found in Utah. Look up the WaterOz site for more information. NutritionGeeks has the best price that I've found for their products.

I'm glad you got a clean bill of health. Maybe getting that peace of mind made the prep and procedure worth doing. But with WaterOz potassium, maybe you can avoid those problems in the first place.

Lynn
 

ahmo

Senior Member
Messages
4,805
Location
Northcoast NSW, Australia
Freddd, I now take my K+ and all my powdered supps via footbath. When I had higher dose B complex, I added a small portion of the cap into my footbath water. Also mg oil. Hoping your recovery is speedy. ahmo
 

Sparrow

Senior Member
Messages
691
Location
Canada
There is an alternative they can use for people with low potassium. I'm not sure how effective it is, but my GI mentioned it when I was debating having a scope done. I think it was called "Golytely" or something like that? This was a very mainstream physician, and she's the one who brought it up based on my history of low potassium, so I don't think it's a fringe product. Might be worth talking to your GI specialist about if that's not already what they're using with you.
 

Phred

Senior Member
Messages
141
@Sparrow oh my that stuff is horrible!! I used that for my colonoscopy prep years ago. And that was when I was still "healthy." I remember it so well. I was glad my husband had taken my daughter to a Beastie Boys concert that night so they couldn't see the state I was in. You have 4 hours to drink a gallon of the stuff. I had it timed to 1 class every fifteen minutes. I would drink it, do my business, clean up and have just enough time to do it again for the next fifteen minutes. FOR 4 HOURS!! By the end of it I was laying on the couch in a fetal position, my body in complete shock, depleted of everything, not just potassium. I was weak and dizzy and freezing cold. Cold is the first thing that hits me when my body is in shock.

Sparrow I know they like to use that crap here in Canada a lot, but if you ever get a colonoscopy, DEMAND a different prep. There are much better ones out there. I think the doctors here like to use it because you can eat until dinner the night before, but MAN do you pay for it. I'd rather go without food for 24 hours than ever go through that again. I have Celiac and getting glutened and being sick for 6 days, wasn't anywhere near as bad as that prep. Just my two cents.
 

Sparrow

Senior Member
Messages
691
Location
Canada
@Sparrow
Sparrow I know they like to use that crap here in Canada a lot, but if you ever get a colonoscopy, DEMAND a different prep.

Ack! I'm glad I didn't end up going through with it, especially when I was already so ill. Thanks for the tip.
 

Freddd

Senior Member
Messages
5,184
Location
Salt Lake City
The prep generally used in the USA these days is 2 quarts of Gatoraid, any non-red or purple color, with 119 grams of Miralax per quart. Each quart is drunk in 1 hour. The first guart follows 4 Ducalax after a couple of hours the evening before , off solid food (clear liquids only) for 24 hours by that time.. The second quart is taken 4 hours before scheduled arrival time.

It's cheap, tastes horridly overly sweet (Gatoraid, I told them beer flavor would be better) and works very well. I had that other stuff years ago followed by a contrast solution for some scan or another.
 

perchance dreamer

Senior Member
Messages
1,686
I did that same prep, Fredd. I used the Whole Foods version of Gatorade so I could avoid the chemicals, but it actually had more sweeteners. I got a yeast infection afterward. For years I've avoided almost all sugar, so it was quite a shock for my system.

My nutritionist said that he skips the Gatorade and instead uses Alacer ElectroMix to get electrolytes. It makes sense. I'll do that next time although I will ask the doctor about it first.
 

Freddd

Senior Member
Messages
5,184
Location
Salt Lake City
I manipulated my "last meal" two nights before so as to get a good head start on cleanout. I had a nice steak with a lot more than normal sautéed onions and garlic. Now that was a deliciously caused blowout the next morning. I also prefer a day without food over that horrid gallon over a freshly eaten meal. YUCK.
 

Little Bluestem

All Good Things Must Come to an End
Messages
4,930
Without any significant food for 44 hours by the time I got out of there I found there was no way for me to have sufficient potassium.
Without any significant food for 44 hours I would be flat on my back with low blood sugar. No way could I make it to the hospital for a colonoscopy.
 

vortex

Senior Member
Messages
162
There are protein drinks called isopure by natures best that are clear and look like a Gatorade sports drink, my mom drinks them during colonoscopy for prep so it gives her a clear liquid meal and she doesn't get as hungry or weak. I can't drink it though as it has sucralose and it makes me sick. She used to make a bone broth before that was clear but filled her up.
 
Messages
1
Hi everyone,

I just saw this and thought it was interesting. I have been drinking a lot of coconut water recently and have noticed that it has ~450mg of potassium per 250ml and it is a clear liquid. It is readily available at local grocery stores. It is priced reasonably at 3 - 5$ for a litter.
What do you guys think, feasible solution for the potassium crash?
 

Victronix

Senior Member
Messages
418
Location
California
If you are taking methyl B12 and methyl folate and have a potassium need, food potassium, i.e., bananas, coconut water, etc., is typically not enough to offset the potassium loss. But sometimes you have to go through that process yourself to really believe it. No one wants to take potassium if they don't absolutely have to, in most cases. But coconut water actually ends up costing a lot more than elemental potassium gluconate powder, which you just mix in water.
 

Revel

Senior Member
Messages
641
I live in the UK and our prep consists of a 2 day pre-procedure diet, followed by an enema on arrival at hospital. I went through this prior to my diagnosis of "slow onset CFS" and POTS. After receiving the enema, I retreated to the toilet cubicle and, out of habit, locked the door. Unfortunately, I reacted so badly to the sudden and rather aggressive loss of fluids that I passed out on the toilet, fell forward and cracked my head open on the wall! Not my finest hour . . .