Magnesium Sulfate versus Polyethylene Glycol in Bowel Preparation Prior to Total Colonoscopy: A Randomized Trial

Farideh Moradi-Moghaddam, Hasan Saadatnia, AmirAbbas Hassan-zadeh


Background: There are many preparation regimens for bowel cleansing. Given their adverse effects, none of them have been considered perfect by the endoscopists. The aim of this study was to compare the effects of two bowel cleansing regimens on clean colonic preparation the subjects'well being and electrolyte balance.

Materials andMethods: Atotal number of 280 patients were randomly assigned to receive either magnesium sulfate (group A, N = 140) or polyethylene glycol (group B, N = 140) as a bowel preparation regimen for colonoscopy. Patients in group A received 120 ml magnesium sulfate 33%. Patients in group B received 2 liter Polyethylene Glycol one day before and 2 liter Polyethylene Glycol on the day of procedure. The quality of preparation was graded by an endoscopist who was blinded to the type of preparation. The simplicity of preparation method, taste of the preparation and their adverse effects were also recorded by an independentblinded investigator, using a questionnaire before the colonoscopy. Blood samples were taken from subjects before and after colonoscopy.

Results: The quality of bowel cleansing was significantly higher in group A (P=0.039). There was no significant difference between the two regimens regarding their side effects and the simplicity of preparation method. However, preparation taste was reported significantly worse in group A (p ‹0.001). Blood samples showed that creatinine and urea decreased more in groupAand potassium decreased more in group B, but all were within the normal limits.

Conclusion: Considering our results magnesium sulfate with regard to price and availability is recommended for bowel preparation.



Colon preparation; Magnesium Sulfate; Polyethylene Glycol; Total Colonoscopy.

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