Jefferson Health

How to Prepare for Your Colonoscopy

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It's not easy to convince your loved ones – or even yourself – to get a colonoscopy. It's not that the procedure itself turns people away; it's the two-day colon cleansing prep required before your procedure that gives even the bravest pause.

Doctors at Jefferson have done a lot of research to try and minimize the discomfort of preparing for colonoscopy, reduce the impact on your schedule, and ensure that the colon is very clean so those precancerous polyps are found.

Their work has lead to a reduction in the volume required to drink and an improved diet on the day before the colonoscopy, all of which help minimize the discomfort of your preparations.


At Jefferson, our patients have access to both split-dosage prep and same-day prep for colonoscopies.

Same-Day Prep

Jefferson's same-day prep option can make the process easier and more convenient, while our advanced technology ensures maximum screening accuracy.

Same-day colon prep is not for patients with certain medical conditions, such as diabetes. Talk to your doctor to see if you're a candidate.

For the same-day colon prep:

  • You can eat breakfast up until 10 a.m. on the day before (after that, its just liquids up until 3 hours before the procedure).
  • You take the first dose of the prep 7 hours before your colonoscopy and the second dose 4 hours before, one liter at a time.
  • You should schedule your colonoscopy at noon or later (So, if your appointment were at noon, then you would have to start the prep at 5 a.m).

For a Virtual Colonoscopy preparation:

  • One day before test, clear liquids only
  • You will be taking either a MoviPrep or a prep given to you by your physician
  • You should also be taking a Tagitol Prep two days before your CT scan

A thoroughly cleansed colon is essential for a colonoscopy. Please read the Colon Cleansing for Colonoscopy (PDF) to improve the safety and effectiveness of your procedure.

Make an Appointment

Want to know your risk factors for colorectal cancer or get a routine screening?

Call 1-800-JEFF-NOW (1-800-533-3669) to make an appointment.

Learn more about colorectal screening services at Abington-Jefferson Health.