What’s The Single Most Important Colonic Question to Ask?

Colonic Irrigation Hydrotherapy Melbourne


Most people don’t know to ask this important question….what’s the difference between an Open & Closed colonic system? This is a great question because it could be the difference between having a positive colonic experience or not. This question deserves to be answered in detail because you can only make a decision once you have all the facts….right?  Just to be clear,  we only offer “Closed Colonics” and after you read our reasons you will understand why we have chosen only this option. So let’s get started!



What is the difference between an “Open” and “Closed” Colonic System?



  • qualified colonic hydrotherapist is in the room with you at all times making the whole process less daunting, more effective and safe.
  • Therapists are all certified, experienced and insured.
  • Therapists explain the entire procedure and conduct a rectal examination to identify contraindications such as Haemorrhoids, Fissures, Strictures, Polyps, Retroverted Rectum and other Rectal Lesions or Growths etc…prior to rectal insertion. Often people are not aware they have these and hence important to identify the presence and severity. It usually only takes 2-3 seconds but vital for patient safety and whether the procedure is even appropriate depending on the findings.
  • Gentle abdominal massage is performed throughout the procedure to assist in releasing stubborn matter firmly adhered to the wall of the colon. The pressure is adjusted to your comfort levels.
  • The digestive system is explained and all questions answered. Information is king!
  • Hot and Cold treatments are often provided to “exercise” the colon. This helps to stimulate and tone the colon.
  • The therapists will identify and explain the different types of faecal matter, undigested food, identify parasites and comment on the general hydration and health of the colon.
  • The viewing tube is set at comfortable eye level, essential for detection and diagnosis.
  • Treatment can be interrupted and adjusted at any time to ensure comfort.
  • Cramping or pain is rarely experienced as the therapist monitors and change the water pressure immediately to reduce any sudden build up causing unnecessary bowel distension resulting in discomfort or pain.
  • Duration of treatment is usually 20-30 minutes as usually a full evacuation is achieved in this time with practitioner expertise and assistance.
  • No Noise, No Odour and No Mess as it is a “Closed”  Colonic System.
  • All faecal matter is removed via a disposable tube directly from your body. The tube connects to the colonic machine that has a short viewing tube before it reaches the sewage pipe. This gives the colonic hydrotherapist an important opportunity to view and comment on the waste for diagnostic purposes. Faecal matter is fully contained and transported hygienically never exposing the patient directly to any waste material. It is gently released from your body with the aid of gravity.
  • There is no vacuum or use of suction as some unscrupulous “open colonic” centres will have you believe.
  • When you have a qualified therapist on hand you are receiving a consultation in combination with a procedure not just a procedure on its own. So professional advice is freely given to enhance and promote good colon health. Depending on what they detect, the therapist may recommend and refer you for a CDSA (Comprehensive Digestive Stool Analysis) where a medical lab assesses your stool in microscopic detail.
  • It is always safer and more effective to have a qualified professional in attendance with you at all times. DIY open colonic centres that claim the same, have clearly different standards to ours.
  • We provide information as to how to better prepare yourself before your colonic to get the best results.
  • The feedback we receive from our clients is, once they have experienced the care at our clinic they would not go back to an “open” system.



  • A therapist may or may not be in attendance with you as each centre varies so best to check and also ask if they will be present 100% of the time as most “Open” colonic centres won’t offer this level of personalised professional care.
  • Often you are given instructions then left on your own to perform your own rectal examination and insertion.
  • You are expected to”lower” yourself onto a hard rectal speculum that is firmly attached to the table, so no room for error as there is no flexibility with the angle of the speculum. This means the angle you choose to position yourself may result in a painful insertion if done incorrectly. It is our view, this is an unacceptable practice as people can’t see what they are doing and inserting anything into the body requires guided and careful attention.
  • Self-insertion of the rectal speculum can scrape or damage the rectal wall when done incorrectly. It is a safety issue that becomes riskier if polyps or other growths are present and perhaps undetected. A proctologist or a gastroenterologist doesn’t allow you to self-insert rectal speculums, so you can safely assume it’s best clinical practices to allow a qualified person to assess and assist in such delicate matters.
  • There is noise, smell and mess as it is an “Open”  Colonic System. This means the faecal matter is released directly into the table’s catchment area like an open sewer as you lie on the table.
  • Faecal matter exposed to the environment makes contamination a real possibility. Most centres provide a towel to cover the open sewer but it doesn’t change how hygienic the whole process is.
  • The colonic table’s built-in moulded faecal catchment area is shallow making splash-back a real possibility and as it is a fixed part of the table. It is not disposable hence all clients use the same catchment.
  • In some open colonic centres, you are expected to “hose down” after use, again most unprofessional expecting clients to clean up after themselves especially when dealing with material that requires strict cleaning protocols using hospital grade disinfectants. Water from a hose will do little to disinfect and most likely increase the risk of splashing surrounding surfaces spreading the contamination further. The E.Coli bacteria needs very careful handling and managed at all times.
  • The colonic machine is set for approximately 45 mins on a set program that may not be the best match for everybody’s bowel condition. A heavy compacted colon will have different needs to a colon that is healthier.
  • If cramping or severe pain occurs during the procedure there is no immediate help if the therapist is not in direct attendance. The response time for an attendant to reach you will vary from centre to centre but it only takes seconds for something to go wrong!
  • The therapist may not necessarily have any training in colonic hydrotherapy so best to check this fact before booking any colonic hydrotherapy sessions. There is no government regulation so this is a serious problem for this profession.
  •  Abdominal massage is not usually provided unless stated, so best to check.
  • An unfamiliar procedure can be stressful and full of apprehension without professional guidance.
  • You will not really understand what you are releasing and what it means to your health which is why it is important to have a trained colonic hydrotherapist to interpret the results. For example when releasing a yellow like bile substance you need to understand what it means and how to prepare yourself whilst your body undergoes a rapid detox. You may even release parasites that you will not have the knowledge to detect or diagnose.
  • Often the viewing tube is on the ground make the process of detection even more difficult as the speculum is firmly attached to the table. This restricts movement and may even cause a degree of internal scraping from the speculum as you twist on the table to view the results on the ground.
  • It is cheaper for a business to operate an “open”  system as they are not paying a qualified colonic hydrotherapist to attend unless they have stipulated they offer this service. When you consider the fees charged for an open DIY service, it offers much less overall value as often they are only slightly cheaper than a closed colonic system. So before you make any decisions, make sure you are comparing apples with apples not apples with oranges!


It is our opinion a  Closed Colonic System is safer and offers “best practices” compared to an Open Colonic System. It has also been our experience once people have experienced a “Closed” system they do not return to an “Open” system.

At our clinic, a comprehensive Health Questionnaire is completed to identify any contraindications or health risks. During the initial consultation, all questions are answered and the procedure explained. You are provided with a private changing room with ensuite as well as a change of clothing items. Your modesty is a priority and respected at all times and you remain covered 98% of the procedure. Our aim is to deliver safe and effective outcomes in a relaxed hygienic environment delivered by accredited practitioners.

In London 6,000 colonic hydrotherapy procedures occur every month, and there is only 1 “Open Colonic” Clinic (at the time of writing this article),  all the rest are “Closed Colonic” Clinics.  Sydney has followed the London model. Just to be clear, as health practitioners, our main issue with an “Open” system is the lack of qualified therapists attending the full session and the increased risk of faecal contamination if strict hygienic procedures are not followed. We do commend the “Open” system centres that operate similarly to a “Closed” system centre.

In Melbourne, we have an unusual ratio of more “Open” than “Closed” colonic clinics. The question you must ask yourself is whether you prefer to attend a clinic that places patient care above all else. At Brunswick Health our priority is to provide the best care possible and to achieve this, we do not leave our patients unattended during a medical procedure.