Since I recently turned 50, my insurance recommends (and pays for!) a colonoscopy. I figured, with some of the health challenges I’ve been experiencing lately, I might a well do it sooner rather than later.
I remember, so many years ago, when Katie Couric went on the Today show and had her colonscopy done on air because her husband had died of it. I remember her saying something to the effect of, “People- get your colonoscopy done. No one else needs to die from this disease.”
|2000- Katie Couric's colonoscopy on the Today show.|
I was nervous about it, like probably everyone is. I’d been told by several people “It’s the prep day that’s the hardest (grossest) part. The colonoscopy itself is no big deal.” Really, I wasn’t even that nervous about the prep day stuff. My husband had already done it the week before me, so I pretty much understood what to expect.
What I was very nervous about was the fasting. And I had a big fear around my blood sugar dropping once I was no longer able to drink any carbohydrate liquids. Can you imagine going through all of that crap (and I mean that literally), but then at the last minute, messing it up because you have to drink carbs to save yourself from a low? (You can’t drink anything 4 hours prior to your procedure.)
All I know is this: THANK GOD FOR MY DEXCOM.
Throughout the day I was fasting, I was able to see the trend line of my falling blood sugars before anything ever got out of control. I’d just drink a little apple juice, and bring it back up. My goal that day was to stay between 90 and 120. And for most of the day, that worked well enough.
But the deeper into the fasting time I went, the more often and faster my glucose levels would drop. I had to wake up around 3am to start drinking “round two” of the liquid. I ended up staying up the whole night. I did lots of creative projects, and honestly, it wasn’t all that bad.
However, once it was around 6am, and I knew I only had 30 more minutes and then that 4 hour window of NO LIQUIDS AT ALL was approaching, I started to panic. I could see that my glucose level just couldn’t stay anywhere close to where I wanted it for longer than about an hour and a half.
So, at 6:15am I drank a BUNCH of apple juice. My blood sugar ended up going to about 250. By the time I went to my colonoscopy appointment it was 180. I asked the nurses if they wanted my Dexcom while I was under anesthesia, but they said they didn’t. They just checked my blood sugar right before I went under (I think it was around 160) and then they checked it again 15 minutes later, once they were done. Once I was in the recovery room, they checked it again and it was 148.
I survived it. And it really wasn’t that bad. BUT, next time, I would decrease my long acting insulin even more. I was TOLD to reduce it by about 50%, but that sounded too extreme, so I only reduced it by about 25%. I hate having my blood sugars run high, and can be a little obsessive over it. But for this ONE day, I’d much rather it run high than low.
If I never have to drink apple juice again, that will be fine with me. And for at least 10 years, when I’m due for my next colonoscopy, I’m pretty sure I’ll avoid it and try something else.
Also, I was told to drink a no carb drink to mix with the Ducalax, so I went with Peach Tea that Crystal Light makes. I had cut out aspartame from my diet over a month before, but for this one day I had to just do it. I use to LOVE that drink. However, since I had to drink so much of it, AND since I’ll forever associate it with “colonoscopy prep day” I may never crave that again. Good riddance, because I know what poison aspartame is… If only I didn’t still crave Diet Dr. Pepper. (And hopefully, soon, I WON’T!)
Like Katie Couric said, get your colonoscopy. No one needs to die from colon cancer.