Preparation for Procedure
Welcome and thank you for choosing Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center for your procedure. Our physicians and nurses are dedicated to providing highly skilled and compassionate care for you and your family. We understand that you may be apprehensive about your procedure. We hope the following information will be helpful to you as you prepare for your procedure, the day of your procedure and during your recovery.
The Gastroenterology Lab is on the 4th floor of Memorial’s Main Building. Take the elevator in the M Building to the 4th floor.
We want to make your experience with us as comfortable as possible. If you have any questions or concerns that are not answered here, please do not hesitate to call your physician or the GI Lab at (814) 534-9122 between 8 AM and 4 PM.
Click here to view a list of all GI Lab locations within the Conemaugh Health System
Click here to view a video tour of the GI Lab
Some of the procedures performed in the GI Lab include: Colonoscopy, gastroscopy (EGD), EGD with dilation, flexible sigmoidoscopy/rigid sigmoidoscopy/hemorrhoid banding, transrectal ultrasound, esophageal motility, 24-hour PH monitor, bronchosopy, EGD with feeding tube placements/removal of feeding tubes.
Before Your Procedure
Your gastroenterologist, primary care physician or other designated physician will do a history and physical examination prior to your procedure.
Your physician may order laboratory tests, x-rays or EKG’s. These tests should be done 3 to 7 days prior to your procedure date. You may have repeat labs drawn the day of your procedure depending on your previous results or the medications you are currently taking.
The physician will specify when to stop taking certain medications prior to the procedure. Do not take any medications the day of the procedure unless instructed to take it by the physician or nurse.
If you develop an abnormal temperature or a communicable disease prior to your procedure please call your physician. It may be necessary to reschedule your procedure for a time when you are feeling better.
The Day Before Your Procedure
The afternoon prior to your procedure, we will call you, and we will let you now what time to arrive at the hospital to prepare for your procedure. Centralized Scheduling will also be able to let you know when your procedure is. You can reach them at 534-9186 or 1-800-999-9675.
Your physician will specify what prep you should use prior to your procedure. This generally includes dietary modification. A colon cleansing prep will be used for any procedures involving the colon. You can receive these medications from the pharmacy or over the counter.
If you don’t have the medication, can’t remember what is included in your prep call 534-9122 that day. If you still have stool return after completing your bowel cleansing prep please call your gastroenterologist.
Please bring all insurance forms / cards with you. If you have questions about your insurance coverage or pre-certification, call your insurance company. If you are not covered by insurance, please make arrangements for payment by calling 814-534-9000 and ask for the Business Office. No financial arrangements are made on the day of the procedure.
Day Before Procedure
Your diet will be modified depending on the procedure you are having done. If you are having an EGD you may eat and drink until midnight on the day before your procedure. If your procedure involves the colon do not eat any solid foods on the day prior to the procedure. You may only have clear liquids the entire day. These include clear broth, water, plain jello, fruit juices without pulp like apple juice, and tea or coffee without cream. Please avoid anything with a red coloring.
After midnight no solid food, gum, tobacco, alcoholic beverages or lozenges are permitted.
Do not smoke for 12 hours prior to your surgery. Eating, drinking or smoking prior to surgery can cause a delay or cancellation of your surgery.
On the Morning of Your Procedure
You may be instructed to take certain medications by your physician the morning of the procedure. You may take them with a sip of water. These may include Cardiac medications or blood pressure medications. Do not take any medications the day of the procedure unless instructed to take it by the physician or nurse. Never take blood thinners, insulin or diabetic medications unless instructed to by the physician.
Wear loose fitting, clean, comfortable clothing and flat shoes.
Wear your glasses instead of contact lenses.
Do not wear make up, nail polish, hairspray or jewelry.
Do not bring money, jewelry or valuables with you.
Children under 18 years of age or incapacitated adults must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian.
You may be accompanied by one adult family member or friend. Children should not accompany adults having any procedures. Because you are not permitted to drive after your procedure, an adult must accompany you to take you home. A responsible adult should stay with you the night following your procedure. Children scheduled for a procedure should be accompanied by two adults, one to assist the child and one to drive home.
When you arrive at the hospital on the day of your procedure report directly to the 4th floor M building and sign in at desk. You will be called to your room. You will be given a hospital gown to wear. You will be asked to remove dentures, hairpieces or hair pins, artificial limbs and contact lenses. You will be asked to remove nail polish and makeup if you didn’t already do it at home. Any jewelry that you wear to the hospital such as a wedding band must be given to your family member or friend. Please remember to remove all body piercings.
You will be interviewed by a registered nurse who will do a nursing assessment, document your historical information and verify all medications (both prescribed by a physician and over the counter) that you are taking and the last time you took each of your medications. You will have an IV started.
Healthcare professionals will be available in this area to make you comfortable and to answer your questions. The staff may ask you the same questions several times. They will ask your name, what procedure you are having done, your medications and your allergies. By repeating our questions, we are verifying and re-verifying very important information to ensure that your time with us is as safe as possible. This is a double check system to ensure your safety which is our number one priority.
You will be seen by your physician who will ask you to sign a consent form. This legally permits your physician to perform your procedure.
You will be taken to procedure room on the same cart, positioned according to what procedure you are having performed. You will be placed on your left side for a colonoscopy or EGD.
You will be attached to a cardiac monitor and your blood pressure will be taken. You may have an oxygen mask or oxygen prongs in your nose. The people around you in the room will be preparing for your procedure. The registered nurse will always stay by your side and will explain everything that is happening.
You will be given sedation and continually monitored. The test will be performed by the physician.
After Your Procedure
After your procedure you will be taken to the recovery area. The physician will explain the results of the test to your family. During this time you will awaken from sedation. The nurse will continue to monitor your vital signs; blood pressure, pulse, temperature, and your breathing.
After you are recovered from the sedation, your vital signs (blood pressure, pulse, respiration and temperature) are stable and you are comfortable, you will be seen by your physician. Your IV will be removed and you will be given discharge instructions. In order to be discharged from the GI Lab you must have a driver related to the sedation you received.
Your time in the GI Lab will vary depending on the procedure you had done, how well you are doing and how comfortable you are. It will be approx 2.5 hours.