Surgery was a breeze...the obstruction was a pain...thanks for your help

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hspenser
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 544
   Posted 11/18/2008 1:24 PM (GMT -7)   
Bringing things up to date and giving some closure (the good kind versus a stricture)....
 
I had posted on here several weeks back and asked about some issues I was having....many of your diagnosed me correctly as having a partial obstruction...about 5 weeks ago I had my first full blockage that was so severe I had to spend a couple of days in the hospital...but it passed so they held of surgery.
A CT scan while in the hospital showed an obstruction.  My gastro had me do the barium test for the small colon and that came back inconclusive.  Meanwhile I am having small bouts of blockage every few days, but within a few hours things clear up and I go on with life.
 
My doctor was very open with me that he felt that I would need surgery by the end of the year.  So I got back on here and started asking everyone about what I should expect.  It was very helpful and I used the information to formulate a list of questions and concerns for my doctor. 
 
The doc scheduled me for a pill cam test on election day Nov 4th....instead I ended up having surgery.
 
On Sunday the 2nd I got hit with a major blockage and was in extreme pain.....by the time my wife got me to the ER I was screaming.  BUT!......I have a great doctor and he not only called ahead but was there waiting for me...I was into the ER and on pain meds within 25 minutes of arrival.  Even though it was obvious that I was blocked (another CT scan showed a massive blockage) I did stop throwing up once I was medicated and I had been passing stool throughout the ordeal the doctor took a wait and see position....by the next morning I was clear and pain free.
 
My gastro came in with the surgeon and they convinced me that I should just go ahead and have the surgery while I was there and basically prepped for it.  I can attest I was cleaned out completely. 
 
So On Tuesday afternoon instead of a pill cam test i went in and had almost 30 inches of small bowel removed.  The surgeon later told me that while it was not the worst he had seen (especially based on amount affected) it was close.  he said I had one piece that was 14 inches long and another 6 inches long that was so damaged he doesn't know how anything passed at all. 
 
So it is all be hind me now......and the purpose of this post is to give another POV on recovery.  i know everyone is different...and every surgery is different....but I had many of you tell me that I would need several weeks to really get my strength back.  Much of what I was told was "spot on" and it really helped to know the things you told me....like I was able to make sure that I was under when they inserted the cath. and NG tube.  I knew to ask about the pain management plan and we worked on one that went almost perfect.
 
BUT!!!!!.......and again we are all different.  I am no hero and pretty much a big baby (just ask my wife) some of you may remember that I was concerned that I would miss too much work and travel.....
 
well I can honestly say that I have slowly eased back into my work load....
 
Surgery on the 4th of Nov
Out of ICU on the 6th of Nov
working from my hospital bed by the 7th
off my IV and pain meds on the 8th of november
central line removed and I am sent home on 10th of November (got to take my first full shower...it was great)
No pain killers taken at home, walking around my neighborhood starting on the 11th of November
Back to working the phones and computer from home by wednesday the 12th.....
 
went back to work in the office for a few hours on Thursday and friday (nov 13th and 14th) My wife drove me back and forth. 
 
My wife left to help her mother get over knee surgery on Saturday the 15th (my birthday) and I have been on own ever since.
 
i got the 20 staples and 2 stiches removed yesterday (Monday) and went back to work full time today.  It is an 80 mile round trip.....and yes i am driving with the permission of my surgeon.
 
I have to go to Arkansas next week for two days but I will pack light.
 
Now I don't say all this as a way of saying hey look at me aren't I strong....no instead...I honestly am wondering what happened?  I sailed through this!   I am a big enough baby that if I had any discomfort i would be screaming for pain killers....if I could not work I would stay home (a day at the office with a two week setback is a bad thing).
 
But I am doing great....almost 100% pain free....eating regular food (grouper sandwiches, crab cakes, shrimp, eggs and grits, oatmeal with brown sugar and milk......salads...and so on)  I have cut the bathroom trips from a pre-op count of 20 times a day to 7 times a day.  I have formed and semi solid stool for the first time in a very long time.  My large colon is still affected and has issues but we are treating that with meds.
 
Honestly....I could have gone back to work full time sooner but I held back because everyone said I should.....everyone except me, my gastro and my surgeon....
 
so here I am......The surgery itself was very painful for the 2 days after and I hope NEVER to experience that pain again.....but i just thought I would share with you all that there can be some very good and QUICK outcomes.
 
THANK YOU ALL FOR YOUR HELP THROUGH THIS....honestly I would have been in trouble without this board.
 
 
dx IBS 1999   UC 2000   CD 2001
Tested BIOGEN TYSABRI (gave me 2 years of remission)
tried Naltrexone Jan. 19, 2007 Stopped the Naltrexone July 28th...started Humira Aug 31st, 2007...current dose one shot every week. Also nightly dose of mesalamine.
Surgery Nov 4th, 2008 removed 30 inches of small bowel.
 Crohns is currently active and has been since April of 2005
52 yrs old


EruditePaul
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 266
   Posted 11/18/2008 2:13 PM (GMT -7)   
Thanks for sharing your story, though it is a little scary to read your story and think about how much pain you have gone through.  It does not sound like a walk in the park.  Have a safe trip.

Diagnosed with CD in 1994;

In 1994 I was treated with Pentasa of no avail.  Have being treated with Chinese herbal medicines for over 10 years.


Nanners
Elite Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 14995
   Posted 11/18/2008 2:50 PM (GMT -7)   
Glad to hear you made it thru your surgery. And glad to hear you are doing so well afterwards. Just don't push yourself too hard and I think you will be fine. I got stupid infections in my incisions after both of my resections and I think that set me back alot. When you feel tired, be sure that you stop and rest. You have just had major surgery and it takes the body awhile to recoup from that. You don't get enough rest now, it will catch up to you later.

But it sounds as if the resection was a success. Sounds like you are feeling so much better now and that has helped alot with your recovery. Sometimes folks are so sick before surgery, that once they have the surgery they feel so much better that it helps their recoveries go quicker too. Be sure to take care of yourself.
Been living with Crohn's Disease for 33 years.  Currently on Asacol, Prilosec, Estrace, Prinivil, Diltiazem, Percoset prn for pain, Zofran, Phenergan, Probiotics, and Calcium.  Resections in 2002 and 2005.  Also diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and Osteoarthritis. Currently my Crohns is in remission.


Zanne
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 3763
   Posted 11/18/2008 3:34 PM (GMT -7)   
I'm glad your surgery went well and you are feeling a lot better. Only you can tell if you are pushing yourself to hard, so just listen to your body. As long as you feel good, keep it up. But if you feel tired, rest and give yourself a break, you did just have major surgery.
Suzanne

CD 19 years offically, 29 unofficially. 3 resections '93, '95 '97
Symptoms constantly but all tests show only minor ulcerations. Currently having multiple episodes of gastritis with no known cause.


Prednisone, 6MP,Prevacid, B12 shots, Bentyl, Xifaxan.....


gachrons
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 4527
   Posted 11/18/2008 4:15 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi glad you are doing so good and take good care of yourself .Sounds like you had quite a go of it and thank goodness you took the time to look after yourself.Remember not to lift as the muscles have been cut you don't want a hernia.Best Wishes.. lol gail
Hallarious woman over 50 ,CD ,IBS 27 years--resection,fistula's,obstructions,hemmies,and still alive.lol gail


Laslow
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 25
   Posted 11/18/2008 6:42 PM (GMT -7)   

Great read, its nice to hear that you did well considering the surgery. I was not so lucky. Felt great after sigmoid colectomy and did very well until I was sent home. Woke up nasty infection, incision blew leaked everywhere and back to the ER. Oh well, nurse was in daily cleaning and packing from Sept 20 unitl Nov 16th/08. Back to work now. It was a tough hull but feel great now. Nice to hear you are doing well but like my wide tells me TAKE IT EASY- Jay


hspenser
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 544
   Posted 11/18/2008 9:30 PM (GMT -7)   
Laslow said...

Great read, its nice to hear that you did well considering the surgery. I was not so lucky. Felt great after sigmoid colectomy and did very well until I was sent home. Woke up nasty infection, incision blew leaked everywhere and back to the ER. Oh well, nurse was in daily cleaning and packing from Sept 20 unitl Nov 16th/08. Back to work now. It was a tough hull but feel great now. Nice to hear you are doing well but like my wide tells me TAKE IT EASY- Jay

WOW...sorry to hear about your troubles.

It does sound like not having any infection really helped keep me moving forward.  I know several on here have mentioned getting them and even my own surgeon kept a sharp out for any sign and he personally removed the staples so that he could give me one final check.  I think being on the anti-b's by IV drip for 24 hours prior to surgery really helped...plus I had just finished a ten day round of Cipro just before my final attack.

Everyone was also worried about getting an infection from the central line and the stitches used to hold it in place....but I stayed clean there as well.


 


dx IBS 1999   UC 2000   CD 2001
Tested BIOGEN TYSABRI (gave me 2 years of remission)
tried Naltrexone Jan. 19, 2007 Stopped the Naltrexone July 28th...started Humira Aug 31st, 2007...current dose one shot every week. Also nightly dose of mesalamine.
Surgery Nov 4th, 2008 removed 30 inches of small bowel.
 Crohns is currently active and has been since April of 2005
52 yrs old

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