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Patient Information

Medicines when having an endoscopy

https://kingstonhospital.nhs.uk/information/medicines-when-having-an-endoscopy

illustration of medicines

Care must be taken if you are on certain medicines and you need to have an endoscopy. An endoscopy might also be called a colonoscopy or sigmoidoscopy.

Look carefully at the table below. This lists all the medicines that you may need to stop or take special care with. Follow the relevant advice. You will be told after the procedure when you can restart any medicines that you stopped.

If your GP or specialist has told you not to stop any of the medicines listed, contact the endoscopy nurse helpline (020 8934 6614, 2pm to 4pm only).

If you have diabetes, you will be given specific advice:

Getting ready

  • You will start ‘bowel preparation’ a few days before your endoscopy. Take any regular medicines at least 2 hours before, or 2 hours after, taking the bowel preparation laxatives. This is to make sure your medicines are absorbed properly.
  • On the morning of the endoscopy, take your regular medicines with a sip of water unless advised not to. If you are taking any of the medicines listed in the table below, follow the advice given.
  • Bring a list of your current medicines with you when you come for the endoscopy.
  • If you might need asthma inhalers or angina sprays, it is important you bring these in with you. 

Check if any of your medicines are affected

If any of your medicines are listed here, follow the instructions carefully. If your medicines are not listed here, you can carry on taking them as usual.

Iron tablets
Iron (ferrous) tabletsStop these 7 days before the procedure. You will be told after the endoscopy when to restart these.
Stool bulking medicines
FybogelStop these 7 days before the procedure. You will be told after the endoscopy when to restart these.
Anti-diarrhoea medicines
codeine
immodium
Stop these 7 days before the procedure. You will be told after the endoscopy when to restart these.
Certain medicines for blood pressure or heart failure
ACE inhibitors
captopril
cilazapril
enalapril
fosinopril
imidapril
lisinopril
moexipril
perindopril
quinapril
ramipril
trandolapril  

Angiotensin II receptor blockers
azilsartan
candesartan
eprosartan
irbesartan
losartan
telmisartan
valsartan  
Do not take these the day before your procedure, the day of the procedure or for 2 days afterwards.

Start taking them again 72 hrs (3 days) after the procedure.

Do not stop any of these if you have severe heart failure. Contact the endoscopy nurse or your GP for advice.
Anti-inflammatories (also called NSAIDs)
celecoxib
diclofenac
fenoprofen
ibuprofen
indomethacin
ketoprofen
mefenamic acid
naproxen
piroxicam
sulindac
tolfenamic acid
Do not take these the day before your procedure, the day of the procedure or for 2 days afterwards.

Start taking them again 72 hrs (3 days) after the procedure.
Certain medicines to reduce blood clots (anti-coagulants and anti-platelets)
apixaban
clopidogrel
dabigatran
edoxaban
prasugrel
rivaroxaban
ticagrelor  
You may need to stop these before your endoscopy. Do not stop without advice from an endoscopy or anticoagulant nurse, your hospital doctor or GP.

Contact the endoscopy nurse helpline:
if you have not been given advice about these medicines
• if you know you are going to have polyps removed.
Warfarin
warfarinYou must speak to a nurse in the anticoagulation clinic at least 7 days before your colonoscopy. You may need to stop warfarin before your appointment, but do not stop it without medical advice.

If necessary, you will be referred to the anti-coagulation clinic at Kingston Hospital. They will make the necessary arrangements for you. If you have not heard from them 7 days before your colonoscopy is due, contact them on 020 8934 2030, 020 8934 2041, 020 8934 3689 or 020 8934 2321, option 5.  

Stopping warfarin for a few days may slightly increase your risk of a clot. You can discuss this with the anticoagulation nurse on 020 8934 3576.  

If you take warfarin, we will check your INR with a finger prick test before your procedure.
Water tablets (diuretics)
amiloride
bendroflumethiazide
bumetanide (Bumex)
chlorothiazide (Diuril)
chlorthalidone
eplerenone (Inspra)
ethacrynic acid (Edecrin)
furosemide (Lasix)
hydrochlorothiazide (Microzide) indapamide
metolazone
spironolactone (Aldactone)
torsemide (Demadex)
triamterene (Dyrenium)
Do not take on the day before your procedure or the day of the procedure. You will be told after the endoscopy when to restart these.

Do not stop if you have severe heart failure. Contact the endoscopy nurse helpline or your GP for further advice.
Epilepsy (anticonvulsant) medicines
Epilepsy medicinesDo not stop the medicines. The laxatives may reduce how much medicine is absorbed. This may make these medicines less effective. This may make a seizure more likely.
Contraceptive pill
Contraceptive pill Do not stop the contraceptive pill, but take extra precautions (such as using a condom) until your next cycle. The laxatives may reduce how much medicine is absorbed. This may make the pill less effective.

Diabetes and having an endoscopy without bowel preparation
https://kingstonhospital.nhs.uk/information/diabetes-and-having-an-endoscopy-without-bowel-preparation
Diabetes and having an endoscopy with bowel preparation
https://kingstonhospital.nhs.uk/information/diabetes-and-having-an-endoscopy-with-bowel-preparation
Medicines when having an endoscopy - Kingston Hospital Download PDF


Contacts

Endoscopy nurses helpline 020 8934 6614 (2pm to 4pm only)

Translate Please speak to a member of staff before or during your visit to the hospital if you require translation.
Accessibility Please contact the Patient Experience Team on 020 8934 3850 if you need this information in a different format.
For information accessibility please visit Kingston Hospital AccessAble www.accessable.co.uk/kingston-hospital-nhs-foundation-trust
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For detailed information on accessibility at Kingston Hospital visit Kingston Hospital AccessAble (https://www.accessable.co.uk/kingston-hospital-nhs-foundation-trust).


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