T-3 Days: Colonoscopy Prep & Brain Meds

So… life with multiple chronic conditions gets interesting again! Yesterday, my neurologist changed my brain meds for my Chiari malformation. That was a fun chat. He warned me that my new medication might make me a little out of it.

Me: That’s nothing new.

Doc: You might tell the same story over and over.

Me: I do that already!

Doc: You might forget what you’re doing while you’re doing it.

Me: Yup! I do that, too!

Doc: My patient with the worst memory side effects sat at a stop sign and waited for it to change.

Me: Yeah… that totally sounds like something I’d do on a normal day.

But here’s the conundrum: I needed to wait 24 hours between my last dose of my old brain med and my first dose of my new brain med. That means I would take the first dose tonight. However, with my colonoscopy on Tuesday, I would only get in two doses before I’d need to skip a dose. So… do I take two doses and skip a dose? Or do I wait to start the new medication until Tuesday? Today is Saturday, so I can’t call my doc to ask.

Ay. Too many questions! Oh well. I’ve got a nurse friend who takes the same medication for the same issue. I’ll ask her for her thoughts and see what she thinks.

**Update: I don’t need to skip my dose! Which is good, because my brain decided for me. My instructions for my new medication was to take it at bedtime. By the time I got to Saturday night, it had been 36 hours since my last brain medication dose, and I was definitely feeling the pressure. There’s no way I could have waited a few more days!

Today’s official orders:
1. No more nuts, seeds, or berries!
2. Pick up Miralax, Gatorade, and Dulcolax

Done and done. If you’re doing the Miralax prep for a colonoscopy, make sure you get the right color Gatorade! My gastroenterologist only specifies no red or purple. I personally avoid… most colors. I get the clear Gatorade. The other tip I’d share about picking a Gatorade: Don’t pick your favorite flavor! The Miralax doesn’t have a flavor, but the amount of Miralax in the Gatorade for colonoscopy prep will change the consistency of the drink. And because you’ll have the runs for hours after doing the prep… your mind will forever associate that Gatorade color with colonoscopy prep.

Don’t get your favorite flavor!

No more nuts, seeds, or berries means I have to watch things like multigrain bread or crackers! No more strawberry or blueberry smoothies. No more raspberry jam. So what can you have? Cherries! Cherry smoothies, cherry jam… Peaches, mango, and apricot are also okay. And regular white bread or crackers without seeds.

Technically speaking, I don’t have to start the low residue diet until tomorrow. However, I like to start a little sooner. It makes things easier once things get rolling with the lovely prep. Basically you want to think about easing your way into the colonoscopy prep and easing yourself back into eating normally after the colonoscopy. Don’t surprise your gut! It’ll get grumpy.


Start hydrating now. At 3 days out, it might not make the biggest difference with your actual colonoscopy prep, but it will start getting you in the habit of hydrating! You really want to be hydrated going into your prep. It’ll help your prep go so, so much easier. Being hydrated also tends to make it easier for them to find a vein when they go to give you your IV for sedation.

Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate.