Diarrhea after resection?

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Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2006
Total Posts : 261
   Posted 12/17/2007 5:20 PM (GMT -7)   
Ok, so I finally had my surgical consultation and I am scheduled for my bowel resection on Jan.8th at 9am.  He will be removing my terminal illeum and part of my right colon.  I had a gallbladder ultrasound today and if that shows any stones or problems it will come out too.  The plan is for the surgery to be done laprascopically.  He says a 2-5 day hospital stay and about a 4week recovery.  I forgot to ask him about what to expect as far as BM's after the surgery, since I will be losing my illeocecal valve and such.   Will I have diarrhea all the time and how long does it typically last?  Do you typically experience weight loss during your recovery period?  I've lost 17lbs since Nov.15th, but being overweight due to Prednisone, it's been a nice side effect.  Also, is the appendix removed?  I can't believe all of the questions I thought of AFTER my consultation was over!  Any advice/help you can give is appreciated.  Give me the good, the bad and the ugly of this surgery and recovery period!!
31year old female
CD of Terminal Illeum and Rectum Diagnosed 12/04
Current Meds: Pentasa,Entocort, Fosomax, Vicodin

Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 2527
   Posted 12/17/2007 5:41 PM (GMT -7)   
You will have D after the resection for a while. Things will go somewhat back to normal after a while I had a resection in February 1 week later a temp ostomy and then un june I had the ostomy reversed. I still have D sometimes and other times finally it will be formed. Sometimes it is slightly formed. I do not have those huge bms I use to have with my C from my CD they were so bit and I so little I didnt kow how the heck it came out before. I hear some people never get back to normal therefore they have to take things such as Questran. I took that once and it gave me bad pain so I stopped it.

I went up to 140 pounds from pred while in the hospital. When I went in for my reversal June 20th I was about 118. I unfortunatly have already had my CD return so I am down to 97 pounds. I was about 119 prior to all of my surgeries but I was on pred prior to them too. I had been hanging around 115 for a while even tho my norm is between 103 and 108.

Some people say their bowels did not return to normal until about 1 year post op. Since you are having those areas removed you will be having theileocecal valve removed which can cause things to back up in the wrong direction but that is very very uncommon. I have had a nausea and vomiting thing post op but it was after the 2nd surgery....1/3 of my colon didnt wake up after my resection when my ileum perforated. When they went back in they removed that dead part of my colon not sure if he took more of my ileum when he was in there that time. then the ostomy. After the reversal ther vomiting has happened 2 times 1 time was today. I feel nauseous a lot. the ileocecal valve as I understand...please if I am wrong correctme...helps with the bile and bile salts which if too much bile gets into the colon it causes more D. That is when Questran would come in it is used initially for choleterol levels to help people with that but the way it helps is by binding to the bile salts helping to slow down the D helping it to form up. A lot of people have great luck and have no need for questran or any similar meds .

It is all an individual thing as far as D how long it will last post op etc.
Dx with Crohn's 1987, symptoms as early as 1984.
Temp iliostomy February 2007, reversed June 2007, Ovarian cysts, migraines, allergies (incl food allergies) , oral allergy syndrome (diff than true food allergies), Asthma, Gall Bladder removed 1999, Inguenal hernia 1987

Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2006
Total Posts : 261
   Posted 12/18/2007 6:51 AM (GMT -7)   
31year old female
CD of Terminal Illeum and Rectum Diagnosed 12/04
Current Meds: Pentasa, Fosomax, Iron, Vitamin b12 injections, Vicodin

Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 3763
   Posted 12/18/2007 7:15 AM (GMT -7)   
I had open resections so I can't really tell you anything about the operation itself. I had always wondered about my appendix and whether it had been removed, but I had never asked my surgeon. My GI explained to me, while showing a picture of the anatomy, that the appendix really has to be removed if the TI is removed. If I were you I would still verify, but my surgeon has long since retired and short of tracking him down, my GI's answer will have to do for me. It is good to know, because if you ever show up in an ER with stomach pain its one of the first things they want to check out.

As far as the big D, if they remove your gallbladder along with the resection, you may have more of a D issue. But it really is an individual thing and you won't know until your body has healed and settled down. Intially you will only have D, which is probably a good thing because your insides are sore and you don't want to have hard things scrapping against them. But down the line, if it continues, you can speak to your doctor to figure out things that will work for you. You can work with you diet or add some immodium before you have to think about Questran. I couldn't tollerate Questran, but some people swear by it.

You also may end up with B12 issues. You need to make sure that your doctor monitors your blood levels. My doctor wasn't ever too concerned about it and I had to keep prodding for him to check me. Your body has some stores of it but eventually they will run out and you will need to get shots, if enough of your small bowel is taken out. I went 7 years after my last resection before I had to start, so it could be a very long time or not at all depending on how much is removed.

Good luck

CD 19 years offically, 29 unofficially. 3 resections '93, '95 '97
Symptoms constantly but all tests show only minor ulcerations. Currently having multiple episodes of gastritis with no known cause.

Prednisone, 6MP,Prevacid, B12 shots, Bentyl, Xifaxan.....

Elite Member

Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 14995
   Posted 12/18/2007 8:09 AM (GMT -7)   
You may have some D after surgery. I usually did until my bowels kind of figured out how to work with the new connection. I had the same surgery as you are going to have (twice) only mine was open each time. I usually lose a little weight during the recovery period as it takes a little bit for your appetite to come back. But once you are healed and if every thing goes well, you will want to eat all those things you couldn't before. But remember even after surgery some things will still not agree with you. Each person is individual. I am sure they will take the appendix as it is connected to the cecum. Also if they do take your gallbladder out at the same time you may have a little more diarrhea for a while, but as I said before for most it settles down after awhile. Good luck with your surgery and I hope you enjoy a very long remission.

God Bless,
Been living with Crohn's Disease for 32 years.  Currently on Asacol, Prilosec 60 mg, Estrace, Prinivil, Diltiazem, Percoset prn for pain and Calcium.  Resections in 2002 and 2005.  Recently diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and doing tests to see if I have Inflammatory Arthritis or AS.

Mormor Vicky
Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 684
   Posted 12/18/2007 8:11 AM (GMT -7)   
I had a resection of the last half of my colon August of 2006. They did take my appendix while they were in there. Even though I didn't have my illeocecal valve taken out I did have "d" for quite awhile but also had constipation after about a month. That was a new sensation. Hadn't ever had that. A year and a half later, I'm doing pretty well. I still get bouts of "d" every week to 10 days and I do get stomach pains almost every day after I eat but it's pretty mild.

It does take awhile to recover but I did have a terrific support system at home. My incision was a full open abby incision because I had to have a fistula repaired that was going to my bladder. So far so good. Incision healed wonderfully but the scar is pretty ugly looking. You won't see me in a two-piece bathing suit but I never wore one before.
Vicky / 47 years old
DX'd with Crohn's during a resection August 2006
DX'd with Steriod induced Diabetes November 2006
Considered in Clinical remission but have minor signs of disease activity
Daughter (26) also has Crohn's since she was 12.
Currently on 4000mg of Pentasa only for Crohn's
No longer able to take 6-MP because of Bone-Marrow Suppression
Cymbalta, Metformin, Lipitor

Regular Member

Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 195
   Posted 12/18/2007 9:47 AM (GMT -7)   
I've had diarrhea for 27 years. Never had it until my first resection back in1980. Used Questran for several years but had to stop taking it. After my last resection in 2005 I have continued to go downhill..but, perhaps you will have different results. At the time of my first surgery the doctors didn't seem to really know what they were doing. I think I was an experiment for them. I think I'd rather have diarrhea than unbearable pain, though. Good luck to you.

New Member

Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 18
   Posted 1/2/2008 10:26 PM (GMT -7)   
This is a big concern of mine as well - I'm going in for a similar surgery next week and am terrified that I will end up worse off than I am now. Right now my bowel movements are manageable, as I know what foods I can and can't tolerate. My surgeon tells me that I will be able to eat whatever I want after I have healed. She thinks that the bile salts absorption issue isn't a big deal because I can take medicine to help bind the bile salts if it turns into an issue, but I am just hoping that my intestines are quick learners that wake up soon after surgery and learn how to absorb the bile salts elsewhere!
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