WOW!!! Whenever I think I'm alone in this struggle with this disease you guys all come through for me. Sorry you are having to deal with the same stuff as me, but I'm really glad you are all here.
I've had the hernia for some time, actually it formed around 1 year after my surgery. I has slowly been getting bigger and bigger and for the most part just annoying. I've had around 6 bowel obstructions in the past few months and when investigated, the scan showed a large loop of bowel herniated through a small opening from an internal incision. Depending on how food moves through, and it's consistancy, it causes the bowel to block and then can't move out of the opening and then the bowel strangulates and ta da!!!! pain.
My doc says the incisional hernia does not have to be near the external incision in your skin, because the bowel can herniate through a secondary internal incision. When they take us apart for a resection, they really take us apart there are multiple cuts.
I too had major infection following my surgery, and he suspects that the hernia may have developed from that. My wound had to be left open to heal after the first surgery, that is, they removed the sutures and just left by gut open to heal and close on it's own, because there was so much infection within the bowel and cavity. Took a good six months before I was back on my feet and several more after that before I was fully physically functional.
My surgeon does not want to do it laproscopically because it is too involved (large loop of bowel), plus he wants to try to correct some of the scarring from the last surgery (open wounds leave big scars.........I have a trough right down my belly...looks horrible really).
Dagger - the pain associated with the strangulation was unreal and took me to ER several times. It is not like the pain we suffer from when we flare. It is like a dagger (no pun intended). Literally drops me to the floor. As intense as kidney stone pain, but there is no build up to it...it is instantaneous and knifelike.
Broomhilda - Yes, mesh is being used, but mesh can also be used via lap surgery. I always feel like there is a little left to come out after a bowel movement, but I think it is because of the way my bowel is now connected to my butthole. I have Crohn's of the large intestine and had the descending and sigmoid removed. So it never feels like I've really finished.
Bammer - my doc says straining, coughing, sneezing, getting out of bed, lifting,etc., and in my case infection can cause hernia's. Good luck onthe 11th.
PSA-Delhi- I think we share some of the same post operative issues with healing......I don't have any adhesions that I know of......some inflammation in the small bowel, but not in the loop that is affected. I will be using some type of binder as well after this surgery just to be on the safe side. This hernia is a little smaller than a honeydew. Annoying isn't it, even without the pain.
Dagger - I'm worried about recovery for this as well, but leaving it any longer is not an option. 1 - can't take the pain when it happens, 2 - missing work because of it, and 3 - it can lead to gangrenous bowel, which I don't want to consider. Part of my problem is that I don't go to the doc when I should and I put up with pain until I can't take it anymore.......not the smartest thing. I think the reason we get the hernias all over is because the surgeries we have are pretty extensive.......I mean, our entire gut is sometimes removed and replaced during resections, muscles are manipulated.......it's pretty traumatic to say the least.....that's why I think the hernia can develop in an area that we think is no where near our incision or problem area.
Gachrons -I should have used binding a long time ago. I had a great deal of difficulty getting my muscles in my belly and back toned up after the surgery and because of the long healing time, they went to mush. I still find it really difficult to exercise because anyway I move, it puts pressure on my wound site and of course the darn hernia. I'm hoping once all this is over, to be able to work out some gentle muscle building exercises for my belly.....and I think binding may help with that. Maybe people here have some ideas as well.
Thanks everyone.......like I said, I'm grateful for all of you. I'll let you know how it goes. I'm optimistic, I have a really great surgeon....in that.......he listens....far more than my GI doc. My GI doc kind of just wants to treat it and get on with it. My surgeon is also a research scientist so he is very interested in all the side diseases I get along with Crohn's (fistula, psoriasis, muscle mass loss........all that good stuff), and he is researching the genetic link that he believes some people have with regards to infectious processes.....so he keeps an eye on me, especially after the trouble with the last surgery. He is also interested in the fact that other people in my family suffer from auto-immune diseases (RA for example). So I'm pretty lucky to have him....wish he was a GI doc really.
and........sorry if this is long winded.......I'm on percacet and I get gabby on percs.