Hi di hi Peeps,

This is a very personal question for me to asking of this group, which I never thought I would have to do, but you are kind souls, and we look out for each other (fingers crossed).

I am scheduled to have a Colonoscopy next month at Clinique Saint-Jean-Sud-De-France, Montpellier.

I went so the “Specialist” on Monday, 10 Jan in Balaruc-le-Vieux to discuss what the process was going to be and, to be blunt, I felt very uncomfortable with his manner (his mobile phone rang twice during the consultation, which he answered without even saying “Sorry”!).

I now have a mountain of paperwork that I am Google translating about what will happen before it all kicks off. To be blunt – I’m shit scared – ha!

He made it quite clear that I had to arrange an appointment with an Anaesthetist at the clinic well before the insertion date. Which I have done that via Doctolib for 26 Jan. I presume is a pre-op screening?

Within the online clinic registration form you must choose a room; which is for recovery purposes I assume?

When I looked at my online booking at the clinic it shows the procedure taking place anytime between 1030 hrs to 1900 hrs! Does the room have a mini-bar :blush:

I look forward to your constructive feedback!

Cheers - Steve

I’d take your own booze, just to be on the safe side. :upside_down_face:

Now seriously, nothing to worry about. They put you under for 5 -10minutes then take a few photos and film, then you are supervised when waking up in a room.


Steve - I can tell you with absolute honesty you have nothing at all to worry about.
The anaesthetist will ask basic questions (have your height, weight, etc ready in metric measures) - medical allergies, past health problems, etc.
The long timescale on the day is for their convenience - they’ll give you one of those ‘gowns’ a bit like giant j-cloths you have to wear whenever you go into the ‘bloc’ (sterile area), and you’ll probably have to wait around for a bit - nothing to eat pr drink until afterwards of course. The procedure itself is no problem at all.
I’ve spent a lot of time in French hospitals over the years, and always been very impressed.


Well, a few points. I suspect the specialist’s off hand manner (though not reassuring) is because this is a very routine procedure and nothing to worry about.

I’ve had two or three with no problems, though none in France. I’ve had a couple an endoscopies too, once again no problems. You need to see the Anaesthetist because in France they are the ones that pull everything together for procedures that require you being knocked out. Even for a short while.

Some colonoscopies are carried out under a quick general OR a local anaesthetic. I’m not sure which I’ve had because I believe they give you a blast of Rohypnol (notorious as a date rape drug) and you don’t remember anything about the procedure.

So, bottom line (no pun intended) the procedure is straightforward, nothing to worry about and you’ll remember nothing about it afterwards.

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Hi Steve, I have had four to date, every five years from the age of fifty. The colonoscopy is a doddle and the worst bit is having to drink a fe litres of water and product mix the night before to clean out the system.
It really is an easy thing to go through.


You will go from the operating block to a recovery room to come round from anaesthesia (and they fill up your colon with gas so can see better, and this has to be expelled - so a bit noisy. But everyone does it so better out than in!). Then onto your room for a doze. Normally you can be collected after about 4.30 but they will tell you on arrival. And you might even get lunch!

The process is totally fine as you are sedated or anaesthetised. Unlike the UK where you don’t get so much as an aspirin according to my sister.

Put bottles of water in the fridge for the preparation stuff as far easier to drink when cold. And don’t stint on this stage, as the cleaner your bowel the easier to spot anything abnormal.

Most people have a polyp or two snipped off, but generally benign.

But it really is ok. And far preferable to the alternative!


I’ve had a few because my father died of bowel cancer at the age of 39. For me the worst part is always the preceding days when ones diet is severely restricted, particularly in France.

Basically prior to the examination, you need to eat all the foods that one might normally avoid.


It’s a literal pain in the arse, though not after you wake up, but the alternative could be much worse.

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Are you really serious about no anaesthesia for this in the UK Jane? It sounds unbelievable, and if true then barbaric.

No its not true,

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Only had anaesthesia once for a colonoscopy and never for an endoscopy, colonoscopy every 2 years and endoscopy every 6 months for my Barrett’s.
Never had a problem with the colonoscopy but I hate the endoscopy with a passion.


Both my sisters have had colonoscopies recently. Neither had sedation. Sister 2 said she felt as if she was on a conveyor belt and that the whole process was without any feeling of care. She was out of there within about an hour or so.

A friend also had a sigmoid colonoscopy with not sedation - but that is easier.

I trust my sisters not to lie to me.

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I requested no sedation, once because I wanted to watch the monitor and another because I had to be back at work. Offered sedation on all occasions and had 7 colonoscopies in total. Maybe some health trust are pennypinching?

I went to Polyclinic Montréal in Carcassonne a few months ago for a scan. While waiting, I saw a large poster on the wall that said they did non invasive colonoscopies using a scanner. I’d never heard of this before, but it may only be for some types of investigation.
My only colonoscopy involved me freezing my butt off on a table with my arse hanging out whilst the lady tried , unsuccessfully, to fix the machine as it was playing up. In the end, I was able to diagnose the problem from my prone position. It was an obviously loose cable between two parts of the instrument. It was more embarrassing for her than it was for me.

Well, just hope that the original poster doesn’t have a technically incompetent team managing his op!

They were probably given Rohypnol (AKA Flunitrazepam) but can’t remember. They should enquire.

Last one I had in UK I had entonox (gas and air). No problem, watched it all then drove myself home.

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tim233, she’s right about the anaesthetic in UK. Normally a sedative but I guess they don’t like knocking patients out because then someone has to monitor them as they recover?


Absolutely agree about following the directions. It’s really not so difficult but the ‘product’ is truly impressive. Do NOT wander far from the loo during this phase! I am due my second colonoscopy soon and have no worries whatsoever.

The product has changed over the years I have been having the examination. Was picolax, last 2x senacot.