Barium Enema

Service Overview

What is a Barium Enema

A barium enema is an examination of the large intestine. Barium enemas are used to help diagnose diseases and other problems that affect the large intestine such as colon cancer or colon polyps, unexplained weight loss, or a narrowing of the walls of the intestine. Barium enema’s can also be used to monitor the progression of diseases affecting the intestine.

Types of Barium Enema

There are two types of procedures that can be performed: a single-contrast study, or an air-contrast study.

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How to Prepare for Your Barium Enema Exam

  • Please plan on arriving 30 minutes prior to your appointment for patient registration.
  • Before arriving for your exam let the Scheduling Department at AMI know:
    • Whether there is any chance you are pregnant.
    • Are allergic to barium or latex.
    • If you have had an upper digestive barium test (Upper GI or barium swallow) recently.
  • 1-3 days before your exam please abide by a clear liquid diet.
  • Day before test:
    • Drink large amounts of non-carbonated clear liquids.
    • Follow detailed instructions of prep material provided by AMI.
  • Date of the test:
    • Bowel preparation requires liquid passing through the bowel to be free of any stool.
    • You may be required to repeat the enema until the liquid that passes is free of any stool.