Associate Editor Dr. Klaus Mergener highlights this article from the May issue: “Patient compliance and suboptimal bowel preparation with split-dose bowel regimen in average-risk screening colonoscopy” by Stacy B. Menees, MD, MS, H. Myra Kim, ScD, Patricia Wren, PhD, Brian J. Zikmund-Fisher, PhD, Grace H. Elta, MD, Stephanie Foster, MPH, Sheryl Korsnes, MA, Brittany Graustein, BA, and Philip Schoenfeld, MD, MSEd, MSc (Epi).
This study addresses the extremely important issue of bowel preparation for colonoscopy. A significant number of patients (up to 30% in some studies) present for their screening colonoscopy with suboptimal bowel preparation. This results not only in increased costs because of rescheduling and wasted resources, but also in missed colon cancers and decreased polyp detection.
Split-dose bowel preparation is currently considered the standard of care and has been shown to lead to better results compared to single dose preps. The current study shows, for the first time, that patient compliance with a split-dose bowel regimen is far from optimal. This is important to recognize because it provides an avenue for providers to potentially improve bowel preparations through interventions which increase patient education and motivation with regards to adhering to prep recommendations.
Take-home points from this article include:
- A significant percentage of patients (~15%) do not comply with split-dose bowel prep instructions
- More attention to patient education and patient support around the time of colonoscopy may be needed and may be expected to result in better bowel preparations and therefore improved colonoscopy outcomes
Read the article abstract online here.
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