Your Colonoscopy

Your Colonoscopy Procedure


A colonoscopy is an exam that allows your doctor to look at the inner lining of your large intestine (rectum and colon). Your physician uses a thin, flexible tube called a colonoscope to look for any changes or abnormalities. During the colonoscopy, your doctor may take tissue samples (biopsies) or remove abnormal growths (polyps).

You will get medication through an I.V., putting you to sleep to keep you comfortable during your procedure.  On average, the colonoscopy exam takes 20 to 40 minutes.

Preparing for Your Colonoscopy Exam

You will receive a phone call from an Ohio Valley Endoscopy nurse.  The nurse will obtain a basic health history and will review your pre-exam (“prep”) instructions with you.  It is very important that you speak with an Ohio Valley Endoscopy nurse before the date of your colonoscopy.

Before your colonoscopy exam, you should follow these important safety rules which are critical to your well-being. If you do not follow these guidelines, your colonoscopy may be delayed or cancelled.

  • Make arrangements for a responsible adult to drive you home and care for you after your colonoscopy.
  • Do not eat or drink anything after midnight the night before your colonoscopy unless you are instructed otherwise.  No food, liquids, water, candy, gums or breath mints are allowed after midnight.
  • It is OK to brush your teeth or rinse your mouth the day of your colonoscopy. Do not swallow.


  • If you take insulin or any other routine medication, your physician or an Ohio Valley Endoscopy nurse will tell you how to take your medicine the day of your colonoscopy exam.
  • You should take your blood pressure, breathing or seizure medication the morning of your colonoscopy with a small sip of water.

NOTE: Failure to follow these instructions can cause complications.

The Day of Your Colonoscopy

If you are unable to keep your appointment or you are delayed, please contact Ohio Valley immediately at 937-240-1471.

  • Make arrangements for a responsible adult to drive you home after your colonoscopy and stay with you for 24 hours after your procedure.
  • Do not wear any jewelry or bring valuables with you on the day of your colonoscopy.
  • Bring your driver’s license/identification card and health insurance cards/forms with you.
  • Depending on your insurance, you may also be asked to bring your copay, coinsurance or deductible.
  • Wear low-heeled shoes and loose, comfortable clothing that are easy to put on, take off and that can be easily folded.
  • Please review the Patient Rights and Responsibilities which are located at the Ohio Valley Reception Desk and on our website at

During your phone call with the Ohio Valley Endoscopy nurse, you will be instructed what time to arrive at Ohio Valley.  Please check in at the front desk when you arrive.  After you register, you will be escorted back to the pre-procedure area to have your vital signs taken.  You will change into a gown provided by Ohio Valley.  Your physician will talk with you before you are given sedation.

After your colonoscopy is completed, you will be moved to a recovery area until you are ready to go home.  You will be offered something to drink- please do not bring food or drink from home.  You may be surprised at how quickly you feel ready to leave. You can expect to be at Ohio Valley for ~ 2-3 hours.


During your colonoscopy, your physician may determine that it is necessary to obtain a biopsy sample or remove a polyp for further study.