happens when the test is performed?
- You wear a hospital gown and lie on a table in the radiology
department. To administer the enema, a nurse pushes a small
tube an inch or two into your rectum, and then uses this tube
to fill your colon and rectum with barium liquid. You may find
the sensation of the filling of your colon somewhat strange
(you might feel like you need to have a bowel movement), but
it is not painful.
The x-ray for this test is taken as a video that begins immediately
after your enema is started. The x-ray video is taken by a
large camera positioned over your abdomen. Usually the room
is darkened while the video is taken so that the doctor can
watch the pictures on a TV screen. If the doctor wants to save
a view in "freeze frame" (developed later for a closer look),
you may be asked to hold your breath for a few seconds so that
your breathing movement does not blur the image. A few more
pictures may be taken after the lights are turned back on.
After this, you are asked to empty your bowel in a nearby bathroom.
Usually one picture is taken of your abdomen after you have
had your bowel movement, to make sure that the bowel has emptied