1. Cisaro, Fabio MD
  2. Andrealli, Alida MD
  3. Calvo, Pierluigi MD
  4. Guana, Riccardo MD, PhD
  5. Pinon, Michele MD
  6. Barletti, Claudio MD


To obtain optimal visualization of the colonic mucosa during gastrointestinal endoscopic procedures, an adequate bowel preparation is mandatory, but a standardized protocol is still lacking for pediatric patients. Polyethylene glycol (PEG) is currently the most used laxative, but the amount of liquid to be taken orally is a large volume for the pediatric population and it may not be well tolerated. The aim of our preliminary trial was to evaluate efficacy, tolerability, and safety of sodium picosulphate-magnesium citrate (SPMC) used as bowel preparation before colonoscopy in children. Fifty children who needed a colonoscopy were prospectively enrolled between April and December 2013 and SPMC was administered to them as bowel preparation. A questionnaire about the product tolerance was completed by the patients' parents. The grade of bowel preparation and any related side effect were evaluated. The mean value of the Boston Bowel Preparation Scale was 7, out of a maximum of 9. Only 5 patients had an inadequate bowel preparation. Seventy percent of the patients considered the taste of the preparation very palatable. The remaining 26% considered it not palatable or not palatable at all. During the preparation, 18% of children complained of nausea, 20% abdominal pain, 2% vomiting, and 2% manifested headache. Bowel preparation with SPMC offers an efficient alternative to PEG and allows, on equal terms of efficacy, tolerability and safety, a much lower amount of laxative to ingest, and remarkable quality, especially in infants and toddlers.