Share this article on:

Bowel Preparation for Pediatric Colonoscopy Procedures

Hunter, Anna; Mamula, Petar

Journal of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition: September 2010 - Volume 51 - Issue 3 - p 254–261
doi: 10.1097/MPG.0b013e3181eb6a1c
Invited Reviews

Colonoscopy is a routinely performed procedure in children and adolescents. Proper visualization of the intestinal mucosa, completion of the procedure, including examination of the terminal ileum, detection of pathological lesions, and therapeutic maneuvers, all are highly dependent on the quality of the bowel preparation. A significant proportion of patients, in some reports up to one third, are inadequately prepared for the examination, which leads to extended procedure time, incomplete examination, or need for repeat procedure. Aside from efficacy and safety, the most important aspects of colon preparation in pediatrics are ease of administration, palatability, dietary restriction, and minimization of disruption of daily routine. An ideal preparation does not exist and a wide variety of regimens are being used. Several of these have been investigated in pediatric clinical trials. This article reviews the published literature with an emphasis on the most commonly used agents, their mechanism of action, efficacy and ease of use, and safety.

From Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA, USA.

Received 16 April, 2010

Accepted 25 May, 2010

Address correspondence and reprint requests to Petar Mamula, MD, Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Division of Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition, 34th Street and Civic Center Blvd, Philadelphia, PA 19104 (e-mail:

The authors report no conflicts of interest.

Copyright 2010 by ESPGHAN and NASPGHAN