help with anemia after surgery

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Regular Member

Date Joined Nov 2009
Total Posts : 380
   Posted 2/17/2010 3:01 PM (GMT -6)   
hey guys,  i updated everyone last week on my progress since surgery.  The only thing i am still strugling with is anemia.  when i was discharged from hospital the second time (for bleeding through rectum), my HGB was 8.6, the tested the next week and it went up to 9.6 but the last week it dropped to 9.2.  also, my white blood count has dropped from 6.5 to 4.  I had more blood work drawn today, so should get results in 2 days.  I am not bleeding from the rectom ( at least from what I can tell) but I still get very tired, dizzy at times, headaches after walking around a lot. 
The surgeon released me today and said i can go back to work in 2 weeks as he feels that the numbers will keep coming up.  they just take time with crohn's surgery.  My GI doctor is the one ordering the blood work and monitoring the levels.  he wants to start 6MP but wont until the HGB comes up.
Should I be worried that something is wrong from the surgery or something else is wrong??  The GI dr said he might do an upper endoscopy if things do not improve to check for bleeding ulcers and such.  Any thoughts?  I am worried, i thought i would have felt much better byt now as the surery was over 4 weeks ago.

Elite Member

Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 14995
   Posted 2/17/2010 4:51 PM (GMT -6)   
It really takes a long time to recovery from surgery. Even 6 weeks out from my surgeries when I went back to work, I was still tired for awhile. You should get your B12 checked as after surgery if the TI is removed you should be on at least monthly B12 shots as the TI is what was absorbing your B12 before and now its gone. Oral B12 will not be enough for you, you will more than likely need the monthly shots. Good luck!
Gail*Nanners* Co-Moderator for Crohns Disease & Anxiety/Panic
Crohn's Disease for over 34 years. Currently on Asacol, Prilosec, Estrace, Prinivil, Diltiazem, Percoset prn for pain, Zofran, Phenergan, Probiotics, Calcium, Vit D, and Xanax prn. Resections in 2002 & 2005. Also diagnosed w/ Fibromyalgia, Osteoarthritis, & Anxiety. Currently my Crohns is in remission, but my joints are going crazy!
*Every tomorrow has two handles.  We can take hold of it by the handle of anxiety, or by the handle of faith"*

Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 1768
   Posted 2/17/2010 9:44 PM (GMT -6)   
Usually you do lose some blood when you have surgery. Did your dr not suggest Iron after surgery to help? During my first surgery I lost a lot of blood, almost needed to get blood, but they didn't want to because I was so young. When I went home, I got lightheaded every time I stood up. My surgeon had me take iron for a couple weeks, and it helped a lot. Maybe it's something to discuss when you talk to him?

32 yr old female-dx with Crohn's in '97 after emergency resection and appendectomy, 2nd resection '05, Bilateral pulmonary emboli 10/09
Currently on Humira, Omeprazole, Effexor, Seroquel, Calcium, Vit D, Coumadin

Regular Member

Date Joined Nov 2009
Total Posts : 380
   Posted 2/18/2010 9:25 AM (GMT -6)   
thanks to both. Yes, I am on iron pills and have been for 2 weeks. waiting on cbc results from yesterday. nanners, I will ask about the b-12 shots when i talk to the nurse tomorrow. thanks to both of you for the info!!

Regular Member

Date Joined Nov 2009
Total Posts : 380
   Posted 2/23/2010 11:27 PM (GMT -6)   
Ok, got updated numbers....Hemoglobin only came up to 9.4 from 9.2 the week before. I have been on iron supplements for 4 weeks, surgery was 5 weeks ago. this is very slow. I am suppose to go back to work next week but I am still tired all the time and have head aches. I visited with my regular doctor today. she looked at al my blood work and said if i was under her care she woul dnot allow me back to work for a few more weeks. Problem is i am not under her care and i do not see the GI for 2 more weeks. This is frustrating not knowing what to do

also, this anemia thing is getting old. I have to sleep with socks, long pants and long sleeve shirt on at night as i get so cold. I feel like my 82 yr old father.....ugh

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 1118
   Posted 2/24/2010 8:23 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi what iron pills are you taking? I suffered really bad with anemia after my surgery and was for ever having transfusions, they put me on iron tablets but when they checked my bloods again it was still low I was then put on oral liquid iron which absorbs more quickly and it worked within 2 weeks of being on it my bloods went from 9.2 to 14 5 maybe you could ask to try a liquid form of iron and see if that works. Bev x
Diagnosed with crohns at 13 now 43
Reversal of temp ileostomy finally have a date 7th April 2010
Meds: Iron syrup,Loperimide,Folic acid & Citalopram 60mg (for Anxiety.)

" I may not be there yet, but I'm closer than I was yesterday."

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