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CO2 Insufflation Beneficial During Colonoscopy

Reduced post-colonoscopy abdominal discomfort; more patients pain-, distention-free

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 7, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Carbon dioxide (CO2) insufflation during colonoscopy is associated with reduced post-colonoscopy abdominal discomfort and improved patient satisfaction, according to a study published online Sept. 30 in the Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology.

Shuo-Wei Chen, M.D., from Chang Gung Memorial Hospital and University College of Medicine in Keelung, Taiwan, and colleagues examined the efficacy and safety of CO2 insufflation during colonoscopy in patients deeply sedated with propofol. One hundred twenty-five patients were randomized to receive CO2 or air (63 and 62, respectively) during colonoscopy. At one, three, and 24 hours after the procedure, the authors assessed post-colonoscopy abdominal pain, distention, and satisfaction, and compared the proportion of patients who were pain-free and distention-free.

The researchers found that post-colonoscopy abdominal pain, distention, and subjective satisfaction differed significantly between the groups at one and three hours after the procedure (P < 0.001 and 0.01, respectively). The proportion of patients who were pain-free and distention-free at one and three hours after the procedure was significantly higher in the CO2 group than in the air group. In the CO2 group, residual bowel gas in colon and small bowel was significantly reduced (P < 0.001). End-tidal CO2 levels did not differ between the groups before, during, or after the procedure.

"Compared to air, CO2 insufflation during colonoscopy reduced post-colonoscopy abdominal discomfort and improved patients' satisfaction," the authors write.

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