Dave Berry on getting a colonoscopy

impactzone Member Posts: 551 Member
edited March 2014 in Colorectal Cancer #1
On a light note, get ready for a great laugh!!!

Dave Barry's Colonoscopy Journal
... I called my friend Andy Sable, a gastroenterologist, to make an
appointment for a colonoscopy. A few days later, in his office, Andy showed me a color diagram of the colon, a lengthy organ that appears to
go all over the place, at one point passing briefly through Minneapolis .
Then Andy explained the colonoscopy procedure to me in a thorough, reassuring and patient manner. I nodded thoughtfully, but I didn't really hear anything he said, because my brain was shrieking, quote, 'HE'S GOING TO STICK A
I left Andy's office with some written instructions, and a prescription for
a product called 'MoviPrep,' which comes in a box large enough to hold a microwave oven. I will
discuss MoviPrep in detail later; for now suffice it to say that we must never allow it to fall into the hands of America's enemies.
I spent the next several days productively sitting around being nervous.
Then, on the day before
my colonoscopy, I began my preparation.

In accordance with my instructions,
I didn't eat any solid food that day; alI I had was chicken broth, which is basically water,
only with less flavor.
Then, in the evening, I took the MoviPrep. You mix two packets of powder
together in a one-liter plastic jug, then you fill it with lukewarm water. (For those
unfamiliar with the metric
system, a liter is about 32 gallons.) Then you have to drink the whole jug.
This takes about an hour,
because MoviPrep tastes - and here I am being kind - like a mixture of goat
spit and urinal cleanser, with just a hint of lemon.

The instructions for MoviPrep, clearly written by somebody with a great
sense of humor, state that after you drink it, 'a loose watery bowel
movement may result.'
This is kind of like saying that after you jump off your roof, you may
experience contact with the ground. MoviPrep is a nuclear laxative. I
don't want to be too graphic, here, but: Have you ever seen a space-shuttle
launch? This is pretty much the MoviPrep experience, with you as the
shuttle. There are times when you wish thecommode had a seat belt. You
spend several hours pretty much confined to the bathroom, spurting
violently. You eliminate everything. And then, when you figure you must be
totally empty, you have to drink another liter of MoviPrep, at which point,
as far as I can tell, your bowels travel into the future and start
eliminating food that you have not even eaten yet.
After an action-packed evening, I finally got to sleep.
The next morning my wife drove me to the clinic. I was very nervous. Not
only was I worried about the procedure, but I had been experiencing
occasional return bouts of MoviPrep spurtage. I was thinking, 'What if I
spurt on Andy?' How do you apologize to a friend for something like that?
Flowers would not be enough.
At the clinic I had to sign many forms acknowledging that I understood and
totally agreed with whatever the heck the forms said. Then they led me to a
room full of other colonoscopy people, where I went inside a little
curtained space and took off my clothes and put on one of those hospital
garments designed by sadist perverts, the kind that, when you put it on,
makes you feel even more naked than when you are actually naked.
Then a nurse named Eddie put a little needle in a vein in my left hand.
Ordinarily I would have fainted, but Eddie was very good, and I was already
lying down. Eddie also told me that some people put vodka in their
MoviPrep. At first I was ticked off that I hadn't thought of this, but then
I pondered what would happen if you got yourself too tipsy to make it to the
bathroom, so you were staggering around in full Fire Hose Mode. You would
have no choice but to burn your house.
When everything was ready, Eddie wheeled me into the procedure room, where
Andy was waiting with a nurse and an anesthesiologist. I did not see the
17,000-foot tube, but I knew Andy had it hidden around there somewhere. I
was seriously nervous at this point. Andy had me roll over on my left side,
and the anesthesiologist began hooking something up to the needle in my
hand. There was music playing in the room, and I realized that the song was
'Dancing Queen' by Abba. I remarked to Andy that, of all the songs that
could be playing during this particular procedure, 'Dancing Qu een' has to
be the least appropriate. 'You want me to turn it up?' said Andy, from
somewhere behind me. 'Ha ha,' I said. And then it was time, the moment I had
been dreading for more than decade.
If you are squeamish, prepare yourself, because I am going to tell you, in
explicit detail, exactly what it was like. I have no idea. Really. I slept
through it. One moment, Abba was shrieking 'Dancing Queen! Feel the beat
from the tambourine ...'.. and the next moment, I was back in the other
room, waking up in a very mellow mood.
Andy was looking down at me and asking me how I felt. I felt excellent. I
felt even more excellent when Andy told me that it was all over, and that my
colon had passed with flying colors. I have never been prouder of an
internal organ.
Dave Barry is a Pulitzer Prize-winning humor


  • jsabol
    jsabol Member Posts: 1,145 Member
    OMG! I laughed out loud, laughed til I cried and my sides ached. I always find his writing funny, but he sure nailed it with this description. Thanks for a laughing start to my day. Judy
  • usakat
    usakat Member Posts: 610 Member

    I have a colonoscopy coming up soon...I would definitely squirm if my GI doc were grooving on Dancing Queen...although, I suppose Dancing Queen is better than the Ramones' Beat On The Brat! Personally, I would prefer Pink Floyd's Comfortably Numb :)

    Here is a great clip from 1982 US Festival - I remember this like it was yesterday...mostly. It was a blast!

  • pamness
    pamness Member Posts: 524 Member
    Really a great post, I wish lots of people could see this and not be afraid of a colonoscopy. It is really pretty easy and can save so much grief.

  • nudgie
    nudgie Member Posts: 1,478 Member
    Enjoyed reading first thing in the morning at work :)
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  • tootsie1
    tootsie1 Member Posts: 5,044 Member
    Dave's so funny. That just killed me! Thanks for posting it.

  • vbkeller
    vbkeller Member Posts: 6
    That's great---thank you for making me smile and shuckle!
  • vbkeller
    vbkeller Member Posts: 6
    That is great!!!!! Thanks for the chuckle and making me smile! I added this to favorites so I can pass it on!!! Thanks!
  • kimby
    kimby Member Posts: 797
    I'm so glasd this got bumped up! Today is *prep* day for me. I needed the laugh for sure!
  • msccolon
    msccolon Member Posts: 1,917 Member
    Dave Barry on colonoscopies
    This one had me rolling! I just had one done last week; wish i had read the part about adding Vodka! Never considered adding alcohol to the mix! I always ask my gastro where the heck his rubber suit is! No way you'd catch me on his end of that procedure without one!
  • peasandcarrots
    peasandcarrots Member Posts: 12
    What a laugh! One that i havn't had in a long time! Thanks for the giggles, and big ups to the author!