Total Colectomy and now extreme weight increase!!

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chaza
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 1/5/2010 6:13 PM (GMT -6)   
 Hi all,
 
This is my first time on this and I never thought that I would ever have to do this as I thought that after my operation all would be well!!Generally I am feeling much better physically now that I am a year on, but I am struggling with the emotional aftermath! This has mainly been brought on by my weight gain. I was too thin before the operation at a small 7 1/2 stone and was delighted to be 8 1/2 stone within 6 months of the surgery. However despite living on a diet of fish and vegetables my weight is now just under 10 stone, but I am only 5 ft 2! My doctor is thrilled and thinks it is a real success, but I have never felt so awful. I am not meant to be this big and I feel so cheated. I watch people stuffing their faces with the most unhealthy food and I can't even have a glass of wine anymore and I am punished with uncontrollable weight gain. I am seriously worried about where this will end up. how much weight do I need to gain and how quickly before my doctor becomes concerned. If this continues I will be obese within two years! I woud understand if I ate crap all day, I believe you are what you eat, but this operation has left me unable to eat processed food, no chineses, no chip shops, no crisps, buns, cakes, alcohol, no sauces! I can't even eat pasta or rice!
 
Everyone told me that I would struggle to keep weight on for the rest of my life and now I cry myself to sleep because my confidence is shot to pieces. Not only do I have a massive scar that now means I won't let my husband touch my stomach, but I feel that I never knew what I was getting into and have been fighting depression since. I had to go back to a very repsonsible and stressful job too soon and I have no support network as I live away from family and friends. Now I am so worried about my body and the fact that eating out and socialising is a nightmare I hardly go out. I am only 25. I got the opertaion because of chronic constipation since birth and I now have BM's 4-6 times a day. I would do the operation again, but within two weeks of being referred to a consultant I was under the knife! He never explained anything, I found out everything from everyone on here (big big thank you), I went into the operation not entirely sure what the name of it was!! No one is listening. The thing is I am, or was or, at least have the potential to go back to the very strong, independant and confident woman that I once was. i guess this is why I have come on here. I have no one to talk to that understands, I feel that I should be over it now and I don't want to admitt to anyone that knows me. They would be so shocked to know how I am really feeling as they all expected me to recover with speed and bravery as usual and I didn't disappoint. Everyone thinks I am so tough and when I've tired to seak to anyone they don't know how to deal with this side of me! I am so sorry to go on, but it is such a relief to say this and I really would love someone to give me some adivce about what could be going on and what to ask the doctor. Last time I went I ended up in tears in front of him becuase I was so angry and frustrated- I felt so ashamed and I am no totally put off going back as I think he just thought I was being a hysterical woman!!
 
Thank you for lending your ears!!
 

Chasblah
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2007
Total Posts : 788
   Posted 1/5/2010 9:54 PM (GMT -6)   
chaza.
you poor thing.
I know how it feels to normally be the strong one and having weak moments.
The most important thing to remember is to be patient with yourself! Give yourself a break.

I have an ileostomy, so i can't give you advice about your weight gain, but i would suggest getting another opinion. Go see another Dr. and see what they say.
Chassity
28 yrs. old. married with one beautiful daughter (born 11/20/07)
-diagnosed with severe pancolitis u/c 2002 had total colectomy 12/19/08; emergency surgery due to abscess-had to redo ileostomy and switch to left side 12/25/08; 2/15/09 found blood clot in superior mesenteric vein (prob. from inf. and surgery inflammation)
i only take vitamins now, when I WANT to. :)
(temporary ileostomy....maybe)

"Things turn out the best for those who make the best of the way things turn out."


chaza
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 1/6/2010 8:11 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Chassity,
 
Thank you for you understanding, I am trying but I guess I am so frustrated at the minute. I feel guilty complaining when I have read what you ahve been through! I know I have it easy compared to most people on here, thats why it took me so long to post. I think it's just nice knowing that I am not the only one. Do you still get weak moments?
 
Thanks,
 
Chaza

suebear
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2006
Total Posts : 5690
   Posted 1/6/2010 8:40 AM (GMT -6)   
I would recommend that you seek professional help for your depression and you inability to let your husband touch your stomach. These emotional issues you need to deal with and conquering the depression will help you with the weight gain.

As for weight gain, it happened to me too, although I had surgery for UC. The only thing I have found to successfully lose weight is to increase exercise and decrease calorie intake. If you are not exercising every day then I recommend you start. Exercise is also good for depression so you will get a double the rewards. If you diet is limited you still will need to reduce the amount you are eating. Weight loss is very simple and consists of increasing your metabolism through exercise and decreasing calories consumed. There are no other magic tricks.

It will get better but you need to get motivated. I know it's hard given what you have been through by my belief is that recovery from major surgery is two-fold; getting throught the surgery itself and then dealing with the emotional impact post surgery. I took antidepressants for a few years to get me through the tough parts, best decision post surgery for me.

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


Allison77
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2005
Total Posts : 421
   Posted 1/6/2010 10:55 AM (GMT -6)   
Chaza,
Im so sorry your going through this. I had my surgery on Nov.23 and am going through something similar. Im 5'3, 123lbs and according to charts/BMI and all that other stuff im totally fine for my height/weight. However, my ostomy has decided to be inverted on one edge the last few weeks and my ostomy nusrse has said..."you need to loose about 5lbs in your tummy area" Im not kidding you, that is what she said to me. My tummy has been my awful area since I was in my teens and I realized that was the area were I gain weight. So she told me to target my weight loss area. Yup, target my tummy area 6 weeks after surgery. Im pretty depressed today as my appointment was yesterday. The only thing I can possibly tell you is, get another opinion and seek help for your depression. Please let us know how things progress!
-Allison
RX Crohn's 1999, over 30 surgeries, 3 strokes, permanent colostomy and rectum removal.
 
"The most unfortunate thing that happens to a person who fears failure is that he limits himself by becoming afraid to try anything new."


chaza
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 1/6/2010 11:47 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Allison,
 
I can't believe that 6 weeks after she is advising you to go on a diet and exercise regime! My scar was infected and still open at that stage and they were desperatly trying to get me to eat more than a mouthful of jelly!! My clothes were literally falling off me- how quickly things change!  There wasn't a gym near me that would let me join for a year after the operation, so good luck there! Before all my problems I was very fit and toned and I have to recommend Yoga esp for the tummy area. It was the first thing that I could do after surgery. I have a really experienced yoga teacher who knows my limits and was willing to work with me! Mind you I still can't do a sit up!
 
Thanks,
 
Chaza

Chasblah
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2007
Total Posts : 788
   Posted 1/6/2010 5:27 PM (GMT -6)   
OMG Allison! That's such a rude thing to say.
Don't feel bad. she probably saw how small you were and didn't think it would offend you. What a dummy.

Chaza. of course i have down days. everyone does. I agree with Suebear about getting professional help for depression.

How long ago did you have surgery?
Your scar will get better. Mine already has and it's only been a year. And I had some nasty scars :P
Chassity
28 yrs. old. married with one beautiful daughter (born 11/20/07)
-diagnosed with severe pancolitis u/c 2002 had total colectomy 12/19/08; emergency surgery due to abscess-had to redo ileostomy and switch to left side 12/25/08; 2/15/09 found blood clot in superior mesenteric vein (prob. from inf. and surgery inflammation)
i only take vitamins now, when I WANT to. :)
(temporary ileostomy....maybe)

"Things turn out the best for those who make the best of the way things turn out."


vette guy
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 650
   Posted 1/7/2010 1:40 PM (GMT -6)   
Chaza- Believe me when I tell you this, but 20 years ago (I've had an ostomy since 4/05/89), I felt the same way you do now!  For starters don't listen to "everyone"  (you mentioned in your post that "everyone tells you....").  Listen to those that are here on this forum, because "everyone" doesn't have an ostomy, yet "everyone" seems to have an opinion! Plus,  I've NEVER shared the fact with my coworkers about my ostomy, primarily because it's none of their business!  However, the choice is your's. Also, though my 1st ET nurse was a Godsend( I've actually put her in my will!)....I've met some really crumby ETs over the years. It's no different than chefs, mechanics, or plumbers.....there are good ones and there are bad ones!!!
 
But, to address another part of your post:
You have concerns about how your ostomy will have an impact on you professionally.  Please believe me...those were my concerns initially as well.  But,  I've held very high profile, high exposure positions for the last 20 years.  Just like the rest of us...you'll get through it!  It's just a matter of time, Kiddo!!
 
And if you need further confirmation...just go through some of my posts.  I am extremely sympathetic and loving to my fellow ostomy brothers and sisters....but I'm a pitbull professionally.  In fact, most of my professional successes have occured AFTER my surgery.  You'll get there.....I PROMISE!!!
 
BTW...what the heck is a "stone",lol?!

Post Edited (vette guy) : 1/7/2010 1:09:50 PM (GMT-7)


Equestrian Mom
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 3115
   Posted 1/7/2010 3:57 PM (GMT -6)   
Chaza~welcome to the forum :-)

Hang in there...sometimes our bodies store fat when we are stressed, tired or depressed...it is hard to say what is truly causing yours, but I would suggest talking to a professional so you can come to terms with the 'new you' and maybe get some additional help with meds, if needed. Many people suffer from short term depression/anxiety after major illness/surgery so it is nothing to be ashamed of!

As far as having a problem keeping weight on...I know there are many who have a hard time...but, it is not standard for everyone. And your scar...that is your badge of honor! You have gone from illness to health and that should be nothing to be embarrassed by!

Remember WE are ALL here for you! We'll listen and suggest solutions...we've been in similar situations, ourselves, and survived

yeah

vette guy
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 650
   Posted 1/8/2010 1:51 AM (GMT -6)   
OHIO76 said...


Remember WE are ALL here for you! We'll listen and suggest solutions...we've been in similar situations, ourselves, and survived

yeah
Ohio...(if that's your real name, lol)...perfectly said!!!!

Fruitcake
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 112
   Posted 1/13/2010 12:18 PM (GMT -6)   
Chaza,
Your illness developed over a period of years and your body was use to dealing with illness. Your body has to adapt to its new
state. You just lost a major body part and at first you are happy to be well and at the same time you need to give yourself time
to mourn your loss and learn what it is like to live a different life. i don't know what kind of meds you were on before but drugs
can effect the way your thyroid and stuff work and that can effect your weight. If you lost a lot of weight when you were ill
some times your body will pack on extra pounds when you are well to make up the weight you lost. Every one here has given
you good advice. I found that the best thing I could do was to get out and try something new. The more stressed you are the
more depressed you will become. I learned more from the people on this site than I ever did from a doctor or nurse. They don't
take the meds or suffer the pains and problems we do so hats off to my fellow Crohnies and Colitis brothers and sisters for
keeping me sane. Good luck Chaza! Fruitcake
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