I would like to wish you all the best for your up and coming surgery. Are you in the USA? Im in Scotland in the UK and am not sure how the hospital works. Try not to worry too much about the actual surgery and how you will feel afterwards,because everyone is different. Over here immediately after surgery you are in intensive care for a few days until you are stable. Then it is just up to how your body responds after the op. Hopefully you wont suffer too much pain afterwards. Look forward to reading how you get on. Good Luck
here are a few things to know right after surgery:
1. when you wake up you will probably have a clear bag on, and it will look kidn of gross, lol. Don't worry though, when you get home you can get your own supplies that aren't like that.
2. the stuff that comes out of you the first couple of days is gonna be this nasty green bile stuff that is gonna smell so bad, and it's like water. but once you start eating again, it will thicken up some, it won't be green, and it won't smell so bad. i really wish i had known that, cause i was so upset, lol.
3. the staples look gross, but they aren't in there for long, and i kept mine covered the whole time.
4. it's probably gonna hurt, but the pain won't last long, and i don'tknow what you have, but the pain from that will be gone forever! YAY!
5. if you start to get worried between now and then it is totally normal, and just try to think of all the things youwillbe able to do after you surgery that you can't do now!
6. We are here for any questions you have and we will all be thinking of you (i know that sounds corny, but it's true!)
7. it's really not as bad as it sounds, i promise!
i hope all goes well!
Thanks for the well-wishes and tips, everyone. :)
Tbraz, I am with you in that I would NOT want an epidural... Besides, I have to keep reminding myself that I have dealt with terrible Crohn's pain for years, and feel like I have a very high tolerance for pain (most of us do, I am sure!), so I think I can handle it. :)
Grace, I am in the US, and the docs said to expect to stay in the hospital for 3-6 days, depending on how fast I recover. You are right, everyone is so different that it is hard to know what to expect...!
Summer, thanks so much for the details about what to expect right after surgery (like the green bile and stink of it). THIS kind of stuff is exactly what the surgeons and all the pamphlets they give you NEVER tell you...! WHy, i don't know, since that is pretty weird and I would probably be upset by it if I was not expecting it! So thanks! :) I told my fiance about it too, so that he won't be disgusted by the green stuff if he catches a glimpse of it somehow! :)
I will post when I get home and let you know how I am doing!
Erin, you're in my thoughts and prayers for your surgery on Tuesday. I'll never forget when you posted your first message under the name "Considering A Bag." Now look at how far you've come! I'm so proud of you for trusting your doctors and for making a decision that's going to bring you excellent health.
Here are a few things I recommend bringing to the hospital: eye shades, ear plugs, Gas-X chewable tablets, liquid Tylenol, chewing gum, hard candies (butterscotch is my favorite), slippers, a robe, your cell phone with charger, hair conditioner, and a small pillow to press against your stomach when you get out of bed.
Also, ask your doctor for a pain pump, so you don't have to call the nurse every time you need some pain medicine. They get busy and can take up to 45 minutes to respond. With the pump, all you do is press a button, and it gives you the medicine through IV.
The medicine will make you sleepy, so that's where the eye shades will come in handy during the day. It also gave me a headache, so the liquid Tylenol will help with that, and the Gas-X will help with gas pain.
In the hospital, every medicine the nurse gives you has to be approved by the doctor, so if you have gas pain at 2:00 in the morning, the nurse would have to call the doctor for approval. Then, you'd have to wait for the pharmacy to get the order and send it up, which can take a couple of hours. It's something I learned the hard way after my surgery, so I'm happy to save you from having to be in pain waiting for some over-the-counter Tylenol or Gas-X.
One more thing, don't let them take you off the IV fluids too soon after you stoma starts working. In the beginning, it will put out a lot of liquid, so you'll need to replenish that through IV fluids. Otherwise, you could get dehydrated, so make sure they stay on top of that.
Good luck on Tuesday! I'll be thinking of you and praying for you. We'll all be anxious to hear how you're doing once you get home.
Take good care,
Hi everyone--well, I am officially an ostomate!!!
I wanted to let you all know how my surgery went, but this will have to be brief as the Pens are playing (I live in Pittsburgh) and I can't miss it! My surgery was on May 6, but you will see why it has taken me so long to post an update (it was a difficult journey...)
The total proctocolectomy with end ileostomy I had done went very well--it was done laprascopically, and I have hardly any incisions. However, after they wheeled me out of surgery, they noticed I looked funny--my mom said I was completely white, including my lips--so they realized that I had lost too much blood and were concerned that I was bleeding internally. So, they had to open me back up the same day to check for any internal bleeding (there wasn't any, so they gave me a blood transfusion and I was fine after that).
All I remember is going into surgery at 7:00 am, but by the time the second procedure was done it was 10:00 PM!!
The next day, I was feeling pretty good--the nurses sat me up in a chair and told me how good I looked. They gave me my pain pump, which I began using. My fiancee was visiting with me, and I had the sweetest older lady as a roommate--her name was June. So everything was going well, until...the next thing I remember is waking up with 17 people around me trying to revive me! It was very scary. Apparently, I am much more sensitive to the pain medicine than your average person, so what happened was my roommate, the old lady, found me slumped in my chair barely breathing! (I think she was my roommate for a reason!) They had to give me a shot to counteract the pain med (so I felt EVERYTHING the day after surgery--ouch!) until I was stable. They put me on a much lower dose of pain med then.
Finally, after a few days, I began to feel better and they let me eat, so I was sent home. HERE IS THE KICKER. After being home and eating for a few days, I began to have bad stomach pains. I dismissed it as gas pains. They began to get steadily worse and closer together. I ended up going to the ER, and guess what I had--an intestinal blockage (can you believe it??? I felt like the world's most unlucky person...!! It was VERY hard to be positive at that point, I admit...) SO, I was readmitted for another 4 days. I had to get an NG tube inserted while awake (horrible, horrible experience), and they stuck a catheter in my stoma (yuck). But thankfully, they cleared the blockage (it was basically a kink in my intestines) without surgery.
So, I have been back at home for 5 days or so, and I can honestly say that now I am feeling REALLY good! I lost so much weight--30lbs--but have been able to eat so much in the last 5 days!! Today I had Arby's and some general Tso's chicken! It is so nice to be able to eat a good size meal and not feel sick afterward like I always did with Crohn's. I have been walking a mile each day and getting stronger. I have also had no problems with the ostomy--it really is not that big of a deal!! It is SO much faster to go to the bathroom now! And pain-free!
So, it has been a long road, but I know if I can handle all that, I am up for just about anything. :) Thanks everyone for all of your support.