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Gastrointest Endosc. 1990 May-Jun;36(3):285-9.

Comparison of a new sulfate-free polyethylene glycol electrolyte lavage solution versus a standard solution for colonoscopy cleansing.

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Division of Gastroenterology, Wilford Hall USAF Medical Center, San Antonio, Texas.


A new sulfate-free polyethylene glycol electrolyte lavage solution (SF-ELS) for colonoscopy was formulated to taste better and have less net water and electrolyte secretion and absorption than a standard polyethylene glycolelectrolyte lavage solution (PEG-ELS). At two centers, 157 patients were prospectively randomized to receive SF-ELS or PEG-ELS to assess adequacy of preparation, patient tolerance, weight changes, and various hematologic and biochemical parameters. Physician assessment of colon cleansing showed no difference between those patients receiving SF-ELS (N = 74) or PEG-ELS (N = 78). Eighty-two percent of all preps were found to be "clinically acceptable." Subjects receiving SF-ELS had significantly less fullness and cramps, while PEG-ELS subjects reported less nausea. There was no difference between groups for vomiting, overall discomfort, or willingness to repeat the preparation received. Eighty percent of all patients would repeat the randomized cleansing methods. There were no clinically significant changes in weight or assessed laboratory parameters, with the exception of potassium where PEG-ELS patients had an mean decrease of 0.22 mEq/liter vs. 0.01 mEq/liter for SF-ELS (p less than or equal to 0.01). Patient taste questionnaires in those patients expressing a preference showed a preference for SF-ELS (76.6%) over PEG-ELS (23.4%) (p less than or equal to 0.001). Thirty-two (22.5%) of total respondents indicated no preference. We conclude that SF-ELS when compared with PEG-ELS is similarly a safe and effective method of colon cleansing for colonoscopy that is well tolerated. Patients prefer the taste of the new solution.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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