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What is a colonoscopy?

  • This examination is used to view the colon (large intestine) through a flexible tube (colonoscope).
  • It helps the physician determine the nature of your health problem.
  • It enables the physician to obtain tissue samples (biopsy) or remove polyps (small masses of tissue growing on the intestine lining).
  • It is used to treat certain pathologies.
  • It is also used to detect colon cancer.

Your specialist will send you instructions concerning your intestinal preparations. It is very important that you follow these instructions carefully; they will make it possible to clearly see the lining of your colon.

What to bring with you:

  • Your health insurance card;
  • A list of your medications;
  • A list of your allergies;
  • Your eye glasses;
  • Your hearing aids or other prostheses.

 Do not bring:

  • Valuables (remove your jewellery and  piercings );
  • Nail polish;
  • Perfume.

If you receive a sedative during your procedure:

A family member or friend must accompany you back home. Please make the necessary arrangements before arriving at the hospital. It would not be safe for you to return home alone. Your procedure may be postponed if you have no one to accompany you. In this case, you may choose to undergo your procedure without sedation.

On arriving in the Endoscopy Unit

  • You will be asked to remove your clothing and wear a hospital gown.
  • A nurse will take your blood pressure and pulse.
  • The nurse will check your medical history.
  • The nurse will insert an intravenous access to your arm.
  • You will then be directed to the waiting room.

Examination procedure

  • Someone will walk with you to the endoscopy room.
  • You will be able to speak with your physician for a few minutes before the examination begins.
  • A nurse will be present throughout the procedure.
  • You will be given intravenous medication to help you relax.
  • The physician inserts the colonoscope into the rectum and gradually moves it forward.
  • A gas is blown in through the colonoscope to give a better view of the colon lining.
  • You may feel some bloating or cramping.
  • Feel free to pass gas. This will help relieve the discomfort.

After the colonoscopy

  • You will be taken to the recovery room on a gurney.
  • You will be administered intravenous liquids.
  • You may rest for at least 30 minutes.
  • You may get dressed.
  • The person accompanying you will meet you in the waiting room.
  • Your physician calls to make an appointment to see you to discuss your examination results.


Back home

After your examination

You can resume your regular diet. However, we recommend that you eat lightly for the rest of the day. You may notice a small amount of blood on the toilet paper. You may have some cramping, bloating and gas in the 12 hours following the examination.

To relieve gas-related pain:

  • Take walks.
  • Eat slowly.
  • Drink hot liquids.
  • By all means, pass gas if you feel the need!

If you were given a sedative, we advise you to follow these instructions for the next 24 hours:

  • Do no operate a motor vehicle.
  • Do not drink alcoholic beverages.
  • Do not take any recreational drugs.
  • Limit your intake of sleeping pills or anxiety medication.
  • Avoid activities that require coordination and alertness.

Contact your physician or go to the nearest emergency room:

  • If you notice considerable rectal bleeding;
  • If you experience acute abdominal pain;
  • If you experience shortness of breath or chest pains;
  • If you are feverish or have chills.

Follow your physician’s instructions.

Additional Notes

Patients with an appointment will receive 
an automated reminder by phone, up to
5 days prior to their appointment. 

This service requires a medical referral from your physician.


Registration: Level 2, aile B. Room 2B138

Arrive early, 45 minutes before your appointment.