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Gastrointest Endosc. 1992 Sep-Oct;38(5):579-81.

Low sodium solution for colonic cleansing: a double-blind, controlled, randomized prospective study.

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Department of Gastroenterology, University Hospital (PMU/CHUV), Lausanne, Switzerland.


The standard polyethylene glycol electrolyte solution for colonic cleansing has a salty unpleasant taste resulting in limited patient acceptance. Introduced as a major advance allegedly providing a distinctly better taste, a new low sodium cleansing solution was recently described. In a double-blind controlled fashion, 66 colonoscopy outpatients were interviewed about general palatability and tolerance of the solution they had ingested for the preparation of endoscopy. Preparation quality was assessed endoscopically. Similar results were obtained for both solutions concerning palatability, tolerance, and cleansing quality. Furthermore, a small quantity of both solutions was tasted and directly compared for taste qualities before endoscopy. Fifty-one and one-half percent of patients preferred the new solution and 48.5% preferred the standard solution or had no preference (not significant). Of the patients, 39.2% were unable to differentiate between the more and the less salty solution. Moreover, 39.6% of patients preferred the solution they judged more salty. We conclude that the new low sodium lavage solution is not superior to the standard solution regarding patient acceptance, compliance, and cleansing quality. Thus, the reduction of salt concentration does not appear to be the appropriate approach to improve patients compliance with colonic cleansing solutions.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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