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Miralax and Dulcolax Bowel Prep for Colonoscopy


A Miralax and Dulcolax bowel prep is done to clear the bowel of all solid matter. Its purpose is to prepare the bowel for surgery or a procedure. Please follow these instructions. Begin the bowel prep one day before your scheduled procedure.

To prepare

  •  Tell our doctors or any member of our clinical staff if you have diabetes or if you are taking blood thinners. You may need to stop some of your medicine a few days before your test.
  •  You may take your medicines, other than diabetes medicines and blood thinners the morning of your test. You may do so with sips of water only.
  •  Five days before your test: Do not take aspirin products or iron tablets.
  • You will need these items from a pharmacy: Miralax in large bottle (8.3 ounces or 255 grams); 4 Dulcolax or Bisacodyl tablets (5 milligram tablets). There may be store brands of these products that cost less. Ask the pharmacist to help you find what you need.
  • Buy a large 64-ounce bottle of sports drink such as Gatorade. If you have diabetes, buy a no or low calorie drink such as Crystal Light instead. This will be used to mix with your Miralax the day before your test. Do not use carbonated beverages.
  •  Arrange to have an adult bring you to your appointment and take you home after your test.

On the day before your test

1. Drink only clear liquids. Avoid all red or purple colored liquids. Do not eat any solid food or milk products until your test is done.

Clear liquids are:

  • Water
  • Strained fruit juices (no pulp)
  • Popsicles
  • Ice
  • Soft drinks
  • Gatorade
  • Clear broth or bouillon
  • Jello
  • Kool Aid
  • Coffee or tea (no milk or cream)

2. Follow the schedule in the table below for your bowel prep. You may need to get to the toilet right away. You will have many bowel movements through the day. They will become very watery. The bowels are clear or clean when there is only pale yellow fluid without flecks of stool.

1:00 PM
Take 4 Dulcolax tablets with a drink of clear liquids.

2:00 PM
Mix the Miralax in a 64-ounce bottle of Gatorade or other clear liquid of choice. Cap the bottle and shake the bottle to dissolve the powder. Most people prefer to drink the liquid chilled so you may want to place it in the refrigerator.

4:00 PM
Start to drink the Miralax. Drink one glass every 10 to 15 minutes.  Finish drinking the liquid in 2 hours. Be sure to drink all of the liquid.

12:00 midnight
Do not eat or drink anything after 12 midnight. You may gargle but do not swallow any liquid. Do not smoke after 12 midnight.

The morning of the colonoscopy

  •  Do not eat or drink anything until your test is done.
  •  If you are to take your morning medicines, take with small sips of water only.
  •  Bring all medicines you usually take (in the original containers) to the hospital with you.
  •  You will need to have an adult with you to take you home after your test. You will not be able to leave by yourself and it will not be safe for you to drive because of the medicine you are given at the start of the test.
  •  You may be told to arrive 1 hour before your test is scheduled so that staff can get you ready. Expect to be here for 2 to 4 hours for your test and recovery time.

Talk to our doctors or nurses if you have any questions or concerns.

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