Polyethylene glycol vs sodium picosulfate/magnesium citrate for colonoscopy preparation
submitted 19 May 2014
accepted after revision 06 June 2014
24 October 2014 (online)
Background and study aims: Polyethylene glycol-based electrolyte solutions (PEG-ELS) and the combination of sodium picosulfate/magnesium citrate (SPMC) are commonly used bowel preparation agents. The aim of the present study was to compare the two agents with regard to cleansing efficacy and tolerance among individuals scheduled for outpatient colonoscopy.
Materials and methods: The 368 colonoscopy outpatients at three Norwegian hospitals were randomized to bowel lavage with either PEG-ELS or SPMC. Compliance and patient tolerance were evaluated using a patient questionnaire. Bowel cleansing was evaluated using the Ottawa Bowel Preparation Quality Scale (OBPS), a validated scoring system with scores between 0 (best) and 14.
Results: There was no difference in the cleansing quality between the PEG-ELS and SPMC groups (median OBPS 5.0 in both groups). The group that received SPMC reported better overall patient tolerance than the PEG-ELS group (72.6 % vs 59.0 % reporting no or slight discomfort, P < 0.01). Compliance with the recommended total fluid intake (4 L) was better in the SPMC group than in the PEG-ELS group (94.2 % vs 81.2 % respectively, P < 0.01); moreover, the polyp detection rate was superior (34.3 % vs 23.3 %, P = 0.02).
Conclusion: PEG-ELS and SPMC are equally effective in cleansing efficacy, but SPMC was better tolerated by patients and resulted in superior patient compliance and polyp detection rate.
Clinical trial registration: NCT01624454
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