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What to Expect

What you can expect during your first visit depends on what procedure you are coming to visit us for. For more details, review our list of services and click the link of the procedure you are receiving.


Barium Enema
Air Contrast Barium Enema
Intravenous Pyelogram
Voiding Cystourethrogram (VCUG)
Upper Gastro-Intestinal Tract


Barium Enema

What is a Barium Enema?
Air Contrast Barium Enema is used to take pictures of your digestive system. Below is information on the procedure.

What does that mean?
The barium enema is done in the Radiology Department of the Children's Hospital. A radiologist will take x-rays of the lower part of your digestive system called the colon.

Before your test

  • A technologist will ask you to take off all your clothes except for your shoes and socks.
  • A hospital gown will be given to you which ties up in the back. You and your parents will be taken into an x-ray room where you will see a TV screen and a table with a big camera.
  • You will also see a plastic bag full of white liquid called barium hanging on a pole at the end of the table.
  • A plastic tube will be connected to the bag.

During your test

  • The technologist will ask you to get up on the table and lie on your left side with your knees pulled up close to your stomach. The tube which is connected from the barium bag will gently be slid into your anus and taped to your behind so it won't come out.
  • Don't worry though because the tube will be very slippery. It will feel just like a thermometer. Your parent will be with you during the entire test.
  • During the time the pictures are being taken, the lights will be turned down so the doctor can see the TV screen better.
  • The doctor will let the barium slowly run down the tube and into your colon.
  • Pictures will be taken with you on your side, your back and even on your stomach.
  • We want to take good pictures of your best side, so you must lie very still so the x-rays don't come out blurry.
  • After a while, you will begin to feel very full like when you are on a car trip and there aren't any gas stations around. Take deep breaths through your mouth and it will make you feel better.
  • After the doctor has taken all of the pictures he wants, the technologist will take a picture with the other camera. Then you can finally go to the bathroom.
  • After you have sat in the bathroom for a while (it is very important to get rid of the barium), the technologist will take you back in the x-ray room for one last picture.

After your test

  • After your test, you can go home. The entire test from start to finish should only take about 45 minutes.
  • Don't forget to ask for a special sticker which we give to all of the boys and girls who have had their pictures taken.

Preparing your child for the Barium Enema

In preparation for the procedure, it is very important that you follow the instructions listed below:

If your child is up to 2 years:

  • No preparation

If your child is 2 - 6 years:

  • Low residue meal (the day before and morning of examination. Examples of low residue foods are boiled chicken, grilled white fish, rice, white bread, potatoes without skins, yogurt, honey and thin soup.
  • Take one Bisacodyl tablet (5 mg) - whole - with water before going to bed.
  • A paediatric Fleet Enema should be given early in the morning on the day of exam; available from drug store without prescription. 

If your child is 6 - 15 years:

  • Same preparation as for 2 - 6 years, but take two Bisacodyl tablets (5 mg) - whole - with water before going to bed.


Air Contrast Barium Enema

What is an Air Contrast Barium Enema?
Air Contrast Barium Enema is used to take pictures of your digestive system. below is information on the procedure.

What is the difference between an Air Contrast Barium Enema and a Barium Enema?

The difference between an Air Contrast Barium Enema and a Barium Enema is:

  1. White liquid called barium is used with some air injected into your colon. The air is slowly pumped through the tube by the Radiologist.
  2. Pictures are taken by the technologist.
  3. It requires more preparation.

Preparing your child for Air Contrast Barium Enema

In preparation for the procedure, it is very important that you follow the instructions listed below:

You child must have a Low Residue diet for two days, then liquid diet only on day prior to examination. Examples of Low Residue foods are boiled chicken, grilled white fish, rice, white bread, potatoes without skins, yogurt, honey and thin soup.

BREAKFAST: Nothing by mouth after LIQUID breakfast on day of examination.

If your child is 2 - 6 years:

  • Take one Bisacodyl tablet (5 mg) - whole - with water before going to bed.
  • A Fleet Enema (paediatric) should be given early in the morning on the day of exam and is available from drug stores without prescription.

If your child is 6 - 15 years:

  • Two Bisacodyl tablets (5 mg) - whole - with water before going to bed on each of the two nights before the examination.
  • A Fleet Enema (paediatric) should be given early in the morning on the day of exam and is available from drug stores without prescription.

 

Intravenous Pyelogram

What is an IVP?
We heard you are going to have some special pictures of your kidneys called an IVP. We thought we would tell you about them so you'll know what's going on!

What does that mean?
The IVP is done in the Radiology Department of the Children's Hospital. To make sure that the pictures come out clearly, read this information which explains the special preparation required for this test.

Before your test

  • An x-ray technologist will have you take off your clothes except for your underpants, shoes and socks.
    • A hospital gown will be given to you which ties up in the back.
  • The technologist will bring you and your parents into a bright room where you will be asked to lie on your back on the x-ray table.
  • The table even has a mattress to make you more comfortable. Above, you will see a big camera with a light that shines on your tummy.

During your test

  • The IVP will take around 40 minutes. Your parent can stay with you the whole time if you want them to.
  • After the first picture is taken, a radiologist will inject some clear liquid called contrast material into your arm.
  • We won't kid you...it will sting for a second when the small needle is put in but only for a second!
  • The amount of contrast material that is injected depends on your weight. How much do you weigh? You will be asked.
  • It takes a few minutes for the radiologist to inject all of the clear liquid in your arm.
  • After the injection, the technologist will put a Band-Aid with a happy face on your arm.
  • The x-ray technologist will then take pictures of your kidneys. It is very important that you stay very still because we don't want the pictures spoiled.  

After your test

  • After the technologist has taken all of the pictures, you can get dressed and go home.
  • Don't forget to ask for a special sticker which we give to all of the boys and girls who have had their pictures taken.

Preparing your child for an Intravenous Pyelogram

No preparation is required for an IVP.


Voiding Cystourethrogram (VCUG)

What is a VCUG?
We heard you are going to have some special pictures of your bladder called a VCUG. We thought we would tell you a little bit about them, so you'll know what's going on.

What does that mean?
The VCUG is done in the Radiology Department where some x-rays of your bladder will be taken.

Before your test

  • A technologist will have you remove all your clothes and put on a hospital gown which ties up in the back.
  • You will then be asked to pee in the toilet. After you have peed, the technologist will take you and your parents into the x-ray room.
  • There you will see a TV, an x-ray table and on the walls, various pictures. Can you tell what they are? Where are the birdies?
  • First the technologist will ask you to climb up on the table and lie on your back. Your parents can stay with you during the entire test if you want them to.

During your test

  • The test should only take about 30 minutes.
  • The radiologist or technologist will put on rubber gloves to keep you as clean as possible.
  • They will wash the area where you pee. The liquid we use will be a bit cold and feel funny but it won't hurt. After washing, you will be covered up with a paper sheet. This is to keep the area super clean so you must not touch it until the test is over. If you want to, you can hold mommy and daddy's hand.
  • The radiologist or technologist will then put a small slippery plastic tube into where you pee. Once it is in place, a small piece of tape is used to hold it in. It will burn for a few seconds and feel uncomfortable but that feeling will pass.
  • Special contrast material that shows up on x-rays and outlines your bladder will be dripped in through the tube. The camera will be placed over you and on the TV you will see what you like inside.
  • The lights will be turned down in the room so the doctor can see the TV better. Notice the clear liquid showing up black on the TV. It is filling up your bladder. When you have to pee really bad, tell the doctor.
  • The tape will be removed and you will be asked to pee on the special cloth provided. As you pee, the tube falls out. You shouldn't feel it. Pictures will be taken. 

After your test

  • After the pictures are taken, the test is over and you may go home.
  • Don't forget to ask for a special sticker which we give to all of the boys and girls who have had their pictures taken.

Preparing your child for a VCUG
Please note that infants will usually be comforted by a bottle of milk at the time the catheter is placed.
Please also adjust timing of next feeding to coincide with your VCUG appointment.

Upper Gastro-Intestinal Tract

What’s a UGI?
We heard you are going to have some special pictures of your digestive system called a UGI and we thought we would tell you about them so you'll know what's going on!

What does that mean?
The UGI is done in the Radiology Department of the Children's Hospital. You will miss breakfast but as soon as the test is over you can eat again!

The UGI takes less than 30 minutes. If a follow-through is involved, the test can take up to two hours.

Before your test

  • A technologist will have you remove all your clothes except your underpants, shoes and socks.
  • You will be asked to wear a hospital gown which ties up in the back.
  • You and your parents will be taken into an x-ray room where you will see a TV screen and a table with a big camera.
  • The UGI will begin with you either standing up against the table or lying down on it, depending on your age.
  • Your parents can stay with you during the test if you want them to.

During your test

  • The radiologist will give you a paper cup of barium. We can make this chocolate or strawberry. You let us know which flavor you want. Try to swallow it exactly when the doctor tells you to.
  • Sometimes the radiologist will ask you to think of your favourite foods so that your stomach will get excited and start working.
  • The doctor will ask you to turn over so your best side can be photographed.
  • During the time the pictures are being taken, the lights will be turned down in the x-ray room. This helps the radiologist see the TV screen better. Remember to be very still when the pictures are being taken. This helps to prevent blurring.
  • If you are going to have a follow-through, you will be asked to drink more barium and x-rays will be taken every half hour until your complete digestive system has been outlined.

After your test

  • After the radiologist is satisfied with the pictures, you may get dressed and go home for breakfast.
  • Don't forget to ask for a special sticker which we give to all of the boys and girls who have had their pictures taken.

Preparing your child for Upper GI Series, Barium swallow and small bowel follow-through

In preparation for the procedure, it is very important that you follow the instructions listed below:

If your infant is 0 - 1 year:

  • Nothing by mouth 4 hours prior to study.

If your child is 1 - 3 years:

  • Nothing by mouth 6 hours prior to study.

If your child is 3 - 15 years:

  • Nothing by mouth after midnight the day before.

Please Note: In any unusual case or in the case of doubt, consult the radiologist at the Children's Hospital.


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