SIL had ER surgery to remove colon

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AlwaysRosie
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Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 8616
   Posted 11/14/2008 9:05 PM (GMT -6)   
Hello,

I usually frequent the Lupus and Crohn's forums . . . but find myself here because my SIL is in ICU having had her colon removed Wed night/ Thurs morning. She went to the hospital at 10pm and they had her in surgery w/i 1/2 hour.

She thought she'd had the flu for a couple of weeks and long story short, her colon ruptured and her bowel contents contaminated her entire abdominal and chest cavity. The doc said he'd never seen so much fecal matter. The worst part is it got in her lungs and she has massive infection throughout her body and in her lungs. When they removed the colon, they found a tumor which is believed to be cancer. The pathology isn't back yet. But they think that caused a blockage which finally ruptured the colon.

She is now swelling and spiking a fever in spite of IV antibiotics. She is on a ventilator, has a nasogastric tube, urinary catheter and ostomy of some sort.

I went to visit and of course she can't talk. Yesterday she was able to see us and gently nod. Today, non-responsive. All I could think to do was to ask her is her pain meds were managing her pain. Yes. Asked her if she was nauseous. No. Asked her if she was cold. No. Too warm? No. I asked if her mouth and lips were uncomfortable. YES! That one hit a nerve and I asked for ointment and for enough of it to be left in the room for us to keep her moistened frequently. I asked her son to apply it often. Warned him that when they take her tube out, she'll yell at everyone who allowed her to be dry!! LOL . . . she nodded and agreed!!

Anyway . . . I'm wondering if you, who have endured this procedure, could coach me in ANY little thing that might bring her comfort. We are warned that she has a limited chance of recovering.

Her health insurance was terminated by a greedy employer in January and the family has applied for medicaid. She is a 59 year old widow as my brother died 3 years ago.

Any advice for creature comforts or blessing this family would be appreciated. Thanks, and . . .

Blessings!

In His Grip

AlwaysRosie           "We can't control the waves, but we can learn how to surf!!"

Psalms 139

Co-Moderator - Lupus Forum

UCTD, Inflammatory Arthritis, Diverticulosis, (recent dx - Sjogrens, Crohn’s 4/08)

Clickable Links:  Lupus Resources    Lupous.Org   Lupus Criteria (4 of 11)   Lupus Chapter Locator


suebear
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2006
Total Posts : 5692
   Posted 11/14/2008 10:07 PM (GMT -6)   

Gosh, this is so terribly sad.  I'm not sure I can help you bring her comfort, it sounds as if you are providing her with support by being present and determining her needs.  This surgery is hard enough to recover from even without the complications of infection.  My thoughts are with you and your family and I hope she pulls through.

Sue


dx proctitis in 1987
dx UC in 1991, was stable until 1998

1998 started prednisone, asacol, pentasa, nortriptylene, ativan, 6MP, rowasa enemas and suppositories, hydrocortisone enemas, tried the SCD diet, being a vegetarian, omega 3s, flax, pranic healing, yoga, acupuncture, probiotics

2000 lost all my B-12 stores and became anemic

2001 opted for j-pouch surgery- now living life med-free


peggy113
Veteran Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 1998
   Posted 11/15/2008 3:17 AM (GMT -6)   
I think you have covered all the bases. I do remember that my skin was so dry and my mom always used to rub lotion on the hands and arms, feet and legs. That felt sooo good. Unscented so the smell won't cause nausea. I pray your SIL is comfortable. You are a very compassionate person.

Blessings.
Peggy
      
Diagnosed with CD in 1979, many resections and meds
Perm Ileostomy July 1984 at Cleveland Clinic
Disease free since surgery 
 


worsenow!!!
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 208
   Posted 11/15/2008 3:32 AM (GMT -6)   

 my prayers are with your family. I know this may sound strange but is she allowed some soft quiet music in the room, one of her faves? just a thought. yyou seem to have things covered with the lips, that is quite annoying when the lips go so dry like that, especially seeing as the tubes will dry her mouth anyway. i hope things turn right, you never know there could still be light at the end of the tunnel for her,

thinking of your family amanda x


extreme constipation from birth
fainting spells aged 15, then diagnosed I.B.S
anal fissures, haemorrhoids internal and external
mucous and bleeding
sigmoidoscopies, endoscpies, scans, x-rays, bloods
h-pylori aged 24-26
more tests, diagnosed severe slow transit, marker tests took 3-4 weeks to come away
large colon removed in 2007, aged 27( surgeon said removed 10ft) no colostomy
still in severe pain, awaiting dietician appt, now lots of food intoleraces
 so much better. now concentraing of food intolerances, odd bad day
meds- ibuprofen, fluoxetine, amitriptyline,and omeprazole 
now med free!!!
 
LOCATION- North east of scotland


flchurchlady
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 2765
   Posted 11/15/2008 5:10 AM (GMT -6)   
Rosie,

You are all in my thoughts and prayers. I hope and pray she pulls through.

Cecilia

Equestrian Mom
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 3115
   Posted 11/15/2008 5:48 AM (GMT -6)   
AlwaysRosie--I cannot think of anything that wasn't already mentioned. She is VERY lucky to have you beside her and looking out for her comfort. You are a special person!

Oh, ice chips? Can she have them? I was only allowed ice chips/popsicles with an NG tube...it would be worth asking.

2 RIS K
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 367
   Posted 11/15/2008 11:11 AM (GMT -6)   
Rosie, I had surgery in September to remove my large intestine. A week later I was rushed back to surgery because of a one inch tear six inches above the site where they sewed everything back together. It turns out it was not caused by the surgery and it would have happened anyway. They have no idea why. Anyway, it was determined that it ruptured four days before they did the surgery, I had been getting sicker and sicker. My bowel contents had been leaking into my abdominal cavity for those four days.

I don't know what I can say to really help. I know that I was extremely sick because of the infection and am still suffering some of the after effects. One thing I can say is to make sure you rub lotion on her hands and her feet. Due to the infection the skin on my hands and feet peeled terribly, you would not believe. My hands have stopped peeling but my feet are just terrible, I can't get it to stop. I can literally peel two inch pieces of skin off my feet at a time. My hair also is flat and appears very greasy, they tell me this is from the anesthetic from both surgeries. I know these things are minor compared to everything else and you are just hoping she makes it, but I just wanted to help with whatever I could. She is obviously much sicker than I was.

If I think of anything else that might help I will let you know. Please please ask me any questions you may have that you think I might be able to answer. I will be happy to help. She will have a long difficult recovery ahead of her, as I am still recovering and still in pain. Every day gets a little better. I too have an ostomy and I am having it reversed on December 15. One more surgery and I'm done, I'm just hoping it's successful; then it really will be a Merry Christmas.

I wish your SIL the best of luck and I will keep her and your family in my prayers. Please keep us posted as to her progress.

God Bless You!!
Amanda
35 years old
Chronic Lifetime Constipation
Diagnosed IBS - 1995
Rectal Prolapse - February 2007
Rectosigmoid Colectomy w/low anterior Anastomosis - 3/13/07
Diagnosed with Colonic Inertia - June 08
Total Colectomy - September 22, 2008
Take Down Surgery Scheduled - December 15, 2008
 
The whole world is at your feet; so paint your toenails Red!
 


AlwaysRosie
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 8616
   Posted 11/15/2008 5:57 PM (GMT -6)   
(((((((((((((( Ostomy Friends ))))))))))))))) Oh . . . ok . . . now I really crying. You guys are SO sweet. I guess I just didn't expect so much support. We are a very close bunch at the Lupus forum, but I had just hoped for some suggestions here since no one knows me. You have absolutely made my day.

I'm actually not so involved with her care. I do visit but have only been with her briefly. I just was trying to think of ways to bless her. You guys are the best. Yes, even the simplest things can be comforting. I hadn't thought of the skin care yet . . . I was gently holding her hand and felt her feet to check for swelling and to get an idea if gentle squeezing of the feet and maybe a tiny bit of foot motion might help . . . but I was really afraid to hurt her. I just keep thinking about blood clots and circulation . . . and you know the drill . . . all the things that go wrong when a person is bedridden.

So . . . We got a bad update last night. Swelling, heart flattened (doc said like standing on a tennis ball), and she spiked a fever. Today they said that there is leaking and the doc may have to do more surgery . . .but my source didn't know if it was leaking from the ostomy or the repair inside. Ugh. But . . . my sister was up to see her this evening and gave good news: She is able to write a tiny bit (hands still too swollen) and her fever is coming down . . . doc said her heart is strong and they have taken her off the blood pressure meds and her blood pressure is stabilized. She is alert tonight . . .YEAH! Doc said we are still not out of the woods, by any means . . . but she has really surprised him . . . he can't believe her improvement!!!

Sorry this all got SO long . . . your kind suggestions of music, ice chips, popsicles, hand and body lotion are all great. She wasn't allowed the ice yesterday . . . but maybe now. They didn't want to cause any activity in the stomach. But hopefully tomorrow.

((((((( Amanda ))))))) I hope your surgery goes perfectly! Merry Christmas!! Imagine how most of us take for granted the bathroom 'duties'.

Thanks everyone for the encouragement and support. Healing Well and its members are such a blessing !!! I'm sure I'll be back with some questions.

Thanks again . . . and

Blessings!

In His Grip

AlwaysRosie           "We can't control the waves, but we can learn how to surf!!"

Psalms 139

Co-Moderator - Lupus Forum

UCTD, Inflammatory Arthritis, Diverticulosis, (recent dx - Sjogrens, Crohn’s 4/08)

Clickable Links:  Lupus Resources    Lupous.Org   Lupus Criteria (4 of 11)   Lupus Chapter Locator


Bennie
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 550
   Posted 11/15/2008 6:36 PM (GMT -6)   
Rosie, I don't have anything to add except I will keep your SIL in my prayers and thoughts. My daughter just had her reconnect on Monday. We just know to take one day at a time and to appreciate the little baby step improvements.

--Mom of bratcat (17 years old) and nonamejames (19 years old)--
Daughter bratcat was diagnosed with pancolitis October 2006
Flared Fall 2006, Fall 2007, Spring 2008
Asacol, Rowasa, hydrocortisone enemas, prednisone, 6-mp, Remicade
7/3/08-Step 1 j-pouch surgery and no more meds
Step 2 scheduled for November 10
 
Son nonamejames was diagnosed with Crohns in Spring 2008
Asacol, Pentasa, 6-mp


AlwaysRosie
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 8616
   Posted 11/15/2008 6:42 PM (GMT -6)   
(((((((( Bennie's daughter )))))))) Prayers for you and daughter too!! I'll pray your daughter is pain free and healed up fast!!

My gosh!! I forgot the most important thing! THANKs for all the prayer support!! I really appreciate it!!

Blessings!

In His Grip

AlwaysRosie           "We can't control the waves, but we can learn how to surf!!"

Psalms 139

Co-Moderator - Lupus Forum

UCTD, Inflammatory Arthritis, Diverticulosis, (recent dx - Sjogrens, Crohn’s 4/08)

Clickable Links:  Lupus Resources    Lupous.Org   Lupus Criteria (4 of 11)   Lupus Chapter Locator


flchurchlady
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 2765
   Posted 11/17/2008 6:36 AM (GMT -6)   
Rosie,

I'm so glad to hear that your sister-in-law is doing a little bit better!

Praying that she continues to improve and amaze the doctors,

Cecilia
Dx'd Crohn's in '99 at 28. Proctocolectomy and ileostomy in '06.
Disease-free, medicine-free, and very thankful to be healthy again :)


Blossom28
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 47
   Posted 11/17/2008 7:08 AM (GMT -6)   
Rosie,  I, too, had emergency surgery when a bowel resection started leaking into my body about 5 days after that initial surgery.  I had peritonitis and was in the ICU for a week, then the hosptial for 6 more weeks.  Keep your prayers and healing thoughts going to your SIL, it sounds like she's a fighter and she'll need all the support she can get.  All of the suggestions given here on the forum are terrific.  I do know that it was heaven once I could get an ice chip!!  I am keeping you all in my prayers!  I am doing really well now, and I surprised the doctors with my recovery, so I am hoping that will be the case with your SIL.

MMMNAVY
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 6927
   Posted 11/17/2008 8:14 AM (GMT -6)   
((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((Rosie)))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))
Forum Co-moderator - Crohn's Disease
...I will find a way, or make one. -Philip Sidney 1554-1586
Make sure your suffering has meaning...
All suggestions/options/opinions are caveated with please consult with your local health care provider...


AlwaysRosie
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 8616
   Posted 11/17/2008 7:03 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks Celiea.

Blossom, I hope your recovery has been good and that you have quality of life.

Thanks Navy . . . I know your still feeling pretty rough yourself.

SIL is scheduled for another surgery tomorrow to fix a leak. I've asked a bunch of questions to the family who talks to my mom . . . but they just don't understand particulars ??????? When I go back to the hospital, I'll try and get more info.

The ventilator will remain until after tomorrow's surgery. They have lowered the oxygen, but they don't want to remove it quite yet. cry BUT . . . the doctor continues to be amazed at her strength.

Will post after surgery.

Thanks again for your kind words.

Blessings!

In His Grip

AlwaysRosie           "We can't control the waves, but we can learn how to surf!!"

Psalms 139

Co-Moderator - Lupus Forum

UCTD, Inflammatory Arthritis, Diverticulosis, (recent dx - Sjogrens, Crohn’s 4/08)

Clickable Links:  Lupus Resources    Lupous.Org   Lupus Criteria (4 of 11)   Lupus Chapter Locator


AlwaysRosie
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 8616
   Posted 11/18/2008 9:09 PM (GMT -6)   
My SIL had the second surgery today.

*sigh* all this time, that incision was open, but packed with gauze? They re-opened today and cleaned everything out? The ventilator has been removed . . . YEAH! But I didn't hear about the NG tube. But my mom said that they are tube feeding her now. So I'm not sure if that is the liquid food or IV stuff. When I ask, my mom's not sure what is what . . . but it all sounds promising if they've added nutrition AND removed the ventilator.

I was able to visit with SIL this morning, before the surgery. I'll go back and see her before the weekend.

I'm sure I'll have lots of questions after I get to talk to her!! She doesn't use the internet. But, I'll bet when she learns of this forum, she will!!

Mom said that SIL will need to go to rehab after her stay at the hospital. Not sure how long all of the will take.

Will post when I have more questions.

Thanks again.

Blessings!

In His Grip

AlwaysRosie           "We can't control the waves, but we can learn how to surf!!"

Psalms 139

Co-Moderator - Lupus Forum

UCTD, Inflammatory Arthritis, Diverticulosis, (recent dx - Sjogrens, Crohn’s 4/08)

Clickable Links:  Lupus Resources    Lupous.Org   Lupus Criteria (4 of 11)   Lupus Chapter Locator


Blossom28
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 47
   Posted 11/19/2008 6:26 AM (GMT -6)   
Rosie,  Thanks for keeping us posted.  I hope that this will be the LAST surgery for your SIL, and we're all pulling for her!  Let us know after you visit today.  Blessings, Blossom

Equestrian Mom
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 3115
   Posted 11/19/2008 6:30 AM (GMT -6)   
I have been keeping her in my prayers...sending good vibes her way. Keep us posted.

AlwaysRosie
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 8616
   Posted 11/19/2008 12:11 PM (GMT -6)   
* long sigh . . . *

The second surgery was done yesterday. The good news is that SIL is off the ventilator and she is getting nutrition from a feeding tube (no detail on type of feeding or tube).

The really weird/amazing thing is that ALL this time (a whole week) she has had an incision that was left open!!! They packed it, but were planning all along to go back in and "clean things up". I can't believe how some of this stuff works. But . . .

It sounds like she is doing well, if the ventilator is not needed and they are giving her nutrition . . .

I'll stay out of the way for a day or two and then sneak back in for a visit.

Thanks again for your encouragement and support.

Blessings!

In His Grip

AlwaysRosie           "We can't control the waves, but we can learn how to surf!!"

Psalms 139

Co-Moderator - Lupus Forum

UCTD, Inflammatory Arthritis, Diverticulosis, (recent dx - Sjogrens, Crohn’s 4/08)

Clickable Links:  Lupus Resources    Lupous.Org   Lupus Criteria (4 of 11)   Lupus Chapter Locator


nene205
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 302
   Posted 11/19/2008 10:55 PM (GMT -6)   
Rosie, that is an amazing story. Reading about your SIL makes me ashamed of all of my surgery problems. I get the idea that some of her misery has been caused by the doctors! I know they are not perfect but cheez. From my experience, I have learned that someone needs to be in the hospital room with their loved one all the time to keep a check on the staff and ask questions.
I will remember your SIL and her family in my prayers.
Keep the faith and let us hear from you soon.

AlwaysRosie
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 8616
   Posted 11/19/2008 11:19 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks Nene . . .

Actually . . . there have been family members there religiously. The hospital staff has been just like family. I can't believe how attentive this little hospital is.

I can't vouch for the Dr.'s techniques . . . but she did go in there with an exploded colon . . . which happened a while before going to the hospital . . . *sigh* It is a little country hospital . . . but they are a breath of fresh air. I thought she'd die!

I'm so thankful for your prayers!! and all the encouragement!!

Can't wait for the next report.

Blessings!

In His Grip

AlwaysRosie           "We can't control the waves, but we can learn how to surf!!"

Psalms 139

Co-Moderator - Lupus Forum

UCTD, Inflammatory Arthritis, Diverticulosis, (recent dx - Sjogrens, Crohn’s 4/08)

Clickable Links:  Lupus Resources    Lupous.Org   Lupus Criteria (4 of 11)   Lupus Chapter Locator


mom9mom
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 489
   Posted 11/21/2008 3:46 AM (GMT -6)   
Rosie Like your sister in law my bowels leaked into my abdomanal cavity and I was not expected to servive.I was sick for a very long time.I was in ICU. for about 2 months.Then rehab to learn to walk again.I was in the hospital off an on for almost half of this year. The advice that I give you is 1.never leave her by her self. 2.Have the head of her church come and pray with her often .3.Talk to her all the time.4.If she can write make sure she has pencals and paper.5.Expect secondeary infections like ARDS,Gallbladder might go septic,yeast infections in the blood.6.Get some very intence moisterizing cream for her arm and feet and have someone rub it in at lest once a day.&.When she is first able to eat food she might not feel like eating so get anything that is soft that might tempt her to eat(If she likes yougert it`s a good one).When she is a little better get some no rince shampoo.That is all I can think of for now Good Luck and I will Pray for your SIL.
Lost half of my small intestine.Ilieostomy for 5 months then reverst,Nerve damage to right leg,part of my right hip bone removed,Cronic pain,hernia,infection in my back called discites,and depression.Mother to 9 kids 7 boys 2 girls and 1 stepson.4 grandsons,9 grandaughters.4 of my grandkids I inherited from my twin sister who passed away 6 1/2 years ago from a blood clot after surgery.God has given me my life back after I almost lost it.Even though its a painful and sometimes hard road to walk I take it one step at a time and give thanks to god for every step I take.


Blossom28
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 47
   Posted 11/21/2008 5:14 AM (GMT -6)   
Rosie and mom9mom,  I also had to have emergency surgery when my bowel resection started leaking into my body cavity (I wonder how common this is??).  I was in ICU and hospital for 6 weeks, then home recovering (with the open wound healing) for two months.  I was very lucky.  I had peritonitis, but I never went septic because we caught this very early . . . . It seems that Drs should warn crohns patients about the symptoms of this, since it is essential to get emergency surgery if you at all have a leak.

AlwaysRosie
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 8616
   Posted 11/21/2008 2:51 PM (GMT -6)   
Mom9mom . . . Thanks those are some great suggestions. I did pray with her a couple times. Its all I could think of that might be of comfort. But you have some great suggestions.

Blossom and Mom . . . so sorry your have both been through SO much!! It is amazing how resilient the human body can be!!

I saw her just for a couple minutes today. The ventilator is out and they had her up for the first time. Not sure if she actually stood or not, as I moved to the waiting room. She is still in ICU and has labored breathing. I think they are tube feeding her. Anyway when I went back in the room she had her eyes closed and looked exhausted, so I held her hand and told her that I was going to leave so she could rest. She whispered "thank you". I won't go back until Monday because I want to leave time for all of her family who work to go up on their days off. I'll go Mon or Tues during the day.

The best news was that the tumor they removed was not cancer . . . YEAH!

I'll post if there are big changes.

Thanks again!

Blessings!

In His Grip

AlwaysRosie           "We can't control the waves, but we can learn how to surf!!"

Psalms 139

Co-Moderator - Lupus Forum

UCTD, Inflammatory Arthritis, Diverticulosis, (recent dx - Sjogrens, Crohn’s 4/08)

Clickable Links:  Lupus Resources    Lupous.Org   Lupus Criteria (4 of 11)   Lupus Chapter Locator

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