• colonoscopy;
  • information;
  • nurses;
  • nursing;
  • state anxiety

Aims and objectives:  To determine the effect of written plus oral information vs. oral information alone on precolonoscopy anxiety.

Background:  Information provision has been considered to reduce precolonoscopy anxiety. However, the best means to provide information before colonoscopy has not yet been determined as there is inconsistency in the outcomes of the clinical trials.

Design:  A two-group, pretest, post-test, prospective, quasi-experimental design with non-random assignment.

Methods:  Participants were assigned to group 1 or 2 in the study. In the enrolment all the participants completed the questionnaires to collect personal characteristics data and assessed subjects’ anxiety level by the Chinese version of the State Scale of State-Trait Anxiety Inventory as baseline data. After that, subjects in group 1 received written plus oral information before colonoscopy, while those in group 2 received oral information before colonoscopy. On the day for colonoscopy all subjects completed the Chinese version of the State Scale of State-Trait Anxiety Inventory again.

Results:  There was no difference in state anxiety and personal characteristic between the two groups at enrolment. After the intervention, although the state anxiety scores were dropped, there were no statistical significant differences between two groups or within groups 1 and 2.

Conclusions:  Information provision before colonoscopy did not reduce the anxiety level in patients directly before colonoscopy.

Relevance to clinical practice:  There was a trend that information had a positive effect on patients’ state anxiety. Future information provision studies may need to add more interactive methods appropriately and take patients’ gender, educational level and coping style into consideration.