Inflammatory Bowel Disease Center | Preparing for Medical Procedures

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Contact the Inflammatory Bowel Disease Center

  • 1-617-355-6058

Colonoscopy Preparations

Preparation Helpful Hints
    • Endoscopy nurses will call and explain plan in detail

    • 1 day full liquid

    • Milk, yogurt, cream soups, pudding
      1 day clear liquid

    • Clear juices, Gatorade (NOT RED), Jello (NOT RED), popsicles, clear soup broth

    • Laxative both evenings of prep

    • Enema

    • Enema morning of test

  • Prepare child for what to expect

  • Pack school lunches

  • Inform teachers and school nurse

  • Laxative may be in pill or liquid form

  • Diligence to diet is essential for an optimal cleaning

  • Explain reason for enemas

Polyethylene Glycol (Miralax)

Information Helpful Hints
  • Light breakfast allowed
  • Must drink a large volume of preparation liquid
  • Start early in the day
  • No enemas or laxatives are necessary

  • Mix and refrigerate the night before
  • Mix with flavored drink mix- by the glass (NO RED DRINKS)!
  • Use a straw, over ice
  • Encourage child to continue drinking
  • May need to stop and start...


  • Much less invasive
  • Usually laxative and enema only
  • Children post colectomy require specialized instructions

Upper Endoscopy

  • Fasting only

Other Information

Fasting Instructions

  • All children should have clear liquids up to 2-3 hours before their scheduled procedure time
  • Solid food and full liquids are stopped after midnight
  • Some facilities may allow solids and fulls up to 6 hours before

What to bring to the Hospital

  • Comfort items
  • Favorite pillow
  • Music
  • Favorite CD or book on tape
  • Pertinent medical information such as: current medication, recent illnesses, hospitalizations etc.

Going Home



  • May eat their regular diet once at home
  • Encourage fluids


  • Must avoid all activities that require coordination for 24 hours
  • Extracurricular, driving
  • May return to school the next day

When to call your doctor/nurse

  • Pain
  • Fever
  • Difficulty arousing
  • Whenever you are concerned

Medications to Avoid

  • Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs
  • Motrin
  • Advil
  • Aleve
  • Aspirin products
  • If you are not sure whether to stop a medication or not, ask!

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- Sandra L. Fenwick, President and CEO

Boston Children's Hospital
300 Longwood Avenue, Boston, MA 02115
For Patients: 617-355-6000
For Referring Providers: 844-BCH-PEDS | 844-224-7337