It's enough to scare anyone anticipating an endoscopy procedure. Fleet Phospho-Soda - generically known as sodium phosphate oral solution - is the typical purgative prescribed for anyone getting ready for a sigmoidoscopy or a colonoscopy. I've had an assortment of them over two years now; tomorrow will be number five. Phospho-soda is foul tasting to be sure - in fact so foul, that my doctor usually recommends a Gravol tablet 30 minutes before drinking the solution.
Anyone who's been there knows what I'm talking about. Nasty.
But then there's the medical warning about electrolyte imbalance from Health Canada. Hypocalcemia, hyperphosphatemia, hypernatremia, hypokalemia, and acidosis - just a few of the conditions which you might experience if you ingest more than 45ml of the solution during a twenty-four hour period.
I'll be taking exactly 90ml in two separate intakes. I know what to expect.
Funny, though. After all these experiences, I've come to realize that timing is critical and that the worst of the entire procedure is the preparation. I've never had any of the adverse reactions mentioned by Health Canada, but I have had a really bad experience in which the timing of intake left me totally exhausted and hardly able to walk. Now I know better.
So, here I go - the first 45ml coming up...