Flexible Sigmoidoscopy Preparation

Read and follow the instructions below or download a PDF copy.

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Day Before Your Exam

Purchase at any drug store the following items: (no prescriptions required).

  • 10oz bottle of Magnesium Citrate or Citrate of Magnesium.
    • ALTERNATIVE if unable to find Magnesium Citrate – Use Miralax – 1/2 bottle or 119gm (7-day dose) mixed in 32oz of Gaterade.
  • Ducolax laxative tablets – you will need 2.
  • 1 Fleet enema.
  1. Eat a light breakfast before 8:00AM. Suggestions: one boiled or poached egg or a small portion of skinless chicken, turkey, or fish; white toast (no butter); one 8oz can of Ensure (DO NOT take Ensure Plus). DO NOT eat vegetables, fruits, nuts, milk, cheese, beef, pork, lamb, or whole grain cereals.
  2. Start a liquid diet at 8:30AM until midnight prior to day of exam. Clear liquids include coffee, hard candy, tea, water, soft drinks, apple or white grape juice, sport drinks (like Gatorade), Kool-Aid, clear broths, popsicles, flavored ice slushes or Jell-O. Please do not drink red-, blue-, or purple-colored liquids. Gatorade is preferred. NO ALCOHOL.
  3. Drink at least 8oz of clear liquids per hour for 8 hours prior to drinking the solution (remember that you have all day to just drink liquids; you must be careful to not be dehydrated).
  4. At 1:00PM drink 1 bottle of Magnesium Citrate (10oz) with 8oz of water. Suggestion: chill the Magnesium Citrate, makes it easier to drink OR Miralax (7 capfuls) mixed in 32oz Gaterade.
  5. At 7:00PM take 2 Ducolax tablets with a full glass of water. Do not chew or dissolve tablets. Do not table tablets within 1 hour of taking antacids and/or milk. This product may cause some abdominal discomfort, faintness, rectal burning, and cramps.
  6. Continue to drink clear liquids throughout the evening.

Day of Your Exam

  • Please take your regularly scheduled medications.
  • If stool is noted in the morning, then use the fleet enema the morning of the exam approximately 2 hours before leaving home.
  • You may continue to drink clear liquids up until 2 hours prior to your arrival time.


Call our office during regular business hours (8:00am to 4:30pm) at 614-754-5500.