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Revista Colombiana de Gastroenterologia

Print version ISSN 0120-9957


CARVAJAL P, Germán et al. A randomized controlled clinical trial of the efficacy and safety of colonoscopy preparation using a single four liter dose of polyethylene glycol (PEG) vs. two 2 liter doses of PEG vs. two low volume (1L + 1L) doses of PEG. Rev Col Gastroenterol [online]. 2019, vol.34, n.2, pp.144-151. ISSN 0120-9957.


Colonoscopy is the gold standard for evaluation of the colonic mucosa. Colon cleansing in preparation for colonoscopy depends on finding of polyps which can be adenomatous with malignant potential and the possibility of degenerating into colon cancer.


This study’s objective was to compare the efficacy and safety of three types of preparations for colon cleansing: a single four liter dose of polyethylene glycol (PEG) vs. two 2 liter doses of PEG vs. two low volume (1L + 1L) doses of PEG.


This is a randomized controlled clinical trial of patients who underwent elective colonoscopy at a University clinic. It was blinded for the doctor who evaluated colon cleansing. Seventy four patients 74 patients were randomized into each group. The main parameter of effectiveness was integral preparation of adequate quality measured on the Boston scale. Secondary parameters were the percentage of adverse events, tolerability and detection rate of polyps.


Complete preparation of the entire colon was achieved significantly more often with 4 liters divided into two 2 liter doses followed by the other divided alternative (1 L + 1 L). It was achieved least frequently with in the single dose: 79.7%, 75.7% and 63.5%, respectively, p = 0.019. Differences were also found in the detection of polyps (13.5%, 24.3% and 9.5%, respectively, p = 0.037). ) There were no differences in presentation of at least one adverse event (p = 0.254) or in tolerability (p = 0.640).


The two divided dose preparations had higher colon cleansing and polyp detection efficacies than did the single 4L dose while there were no differences in occurrence of adverse events and tolerability. The divided PEG 2L dose could be a very good option for elective colonoscopy preparation.

Keywords : Efficacy; safety; preparation; colon; polyethylene glycol; low volume.

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