September 23rd, 2013
Making Bowel Preps Palatable
We know that split-dose, polyethylene glycol (PEG)–based bowel preparation solutions provide the best cleansing before colonoscopy. However, many patients are not compliant with the bowel prep procedure because of the poor taste of the PEG solution. Results of a recent trial suggest a practical approach to overcoming this problem: Use candy. In the trial, use of menthol-flavored candy while drinking the PEG solution improved tolerability and resulted in higher-quality colon preparation and a better patient experience.
In that same vein, I have noted that physicians use other methods of making the solution more palatable, including adding flavoring to the prep or masking the flavor of PEG with an additional agent during ingestion. (My personal favorite is to chase each gulp with a sip of black coffee!)
So what do you do to enhance your colonoscopy prep’s tolerability?
- Add a dilutant with flavor?
- Use an adjunctive flavor when ingesting?
- Slow delivery down further?
- Something else?
I (and a lot of fifty-plus-year-olds) look forward to you revealing your secrets!