Hello There! 2much2bear
In September 2005, I had several surgeries for Slow Transit Colon in which I suffered for 15 years. I meet with numerous specialists and I was told to take mirilax and live with my problem. My husband, who knew what I was going through was upset and discussed my problem with a coworker of his who had colon cancer. His surgeon knew my problem and agreed to meet with my husband and I and do a case history of constipation. After three months of a series of medical testing such as colonscopy, sitz marker test, barium enemas, an upper GI, sigmoidoscopy, everything pointed to Slow Transit Colon. He too said I could live with my problems or have a Subtotal Colectomy with the possibility of an ostomy (either temp or permanent). Since he was doing a laparoscopic Subtotal Colectomy, Ileal Rectoscopy, and Rectopexy, a urologist would be involved as well. After discussing the pros and cons with my husband and daughter, I had the operation which lasted 9 1/2 hours w/complications and a temporary ostomy.
Then the real complications began after 12 am, I was bleeding internally where they did not know and I received one blood transfusion after another which I was not in favor of but I had no choice or I would have died. Seven hours later, you could not even see my eyes. I was so swollen my surgeon ordered ER Surgery Stat and another 9 1/2 hours of surgery with the possibility of not surviving. The outcome did not look good where they pulled my daughter out of school and my parents came to the hospital after an hour drive. I remember leaving my room and there was a bright light as they transported me down the hall and I cried and said why me and said to God "it is not my time". As they wisped me through the OR doors where my surgeon was waiting patiently. They needed more blood and it had not been processed yet which delayed my surgery and the risks got greater. Then all of a sudden I woke up in recovery where my daughter stood by my side with tears in her eyes and said you did it. For five days, I could not get out of bed nor did I stay awake long enough to see my stomach, the ostomy bad, all of the IV's, etc. Finally, the nurse said you have to get up and walk around and we need to change your bandage on your stomach, which I had no idea until it was removed. I looked like Frankenstein.
After experiencing all the obstacles, it made me only stronger to get the temporary ostomy reversed if everything healed well. But I had to remember, that everyone's body heals differently and reacts differently and no two outcomes are ever the same. It is up to the person actually experiencing the situation and has an effect on the final outcome. A full month passed and my weight dropped drastically. As soon as I ate something, it went into the ostomy bag. And having an ostomy bag to me personally requires a great deal of patience and excellent hygiene. It got to the point on Halloween, I could not get out of bed, I was so weak. In which I was scheduled that same afternoon for insertion of a TPN for feeding of good fat to gain weight and build my strength up so by the 12th week, I could have my reversal. Luckly, I received a temporary disability from my employer and I was able take better care of myself, rest, and I also had excellent support from my family and friends. Believe me these Ostomy Forums got me through a great deal by learning that I was not alone and the people in this Ostomy Forum are geniune. It is an on-line support group from people all over the world that are experiencing what we are going through. We don't try to scare one another but the experience alone can upset anyone in our position. However, ONE MUST BE OPTIMISTIC and BE A BELIEVER. Since everything was working properly and I was gaining weight to have the reversal, five days before Christmas my reversal took place. The reversal surgery lasted seven hours and I had two horrible days following the surgery meaning, I could not have a bowel movement. Which was another cause for concern, because everything I was eating was backing up. One evening, my nurse came in to check on me and found me on the bathroom floor curled up in the fetal position covered in brown bile and vomit. My surgone was called in. If I did not have a bowel movement by the next day, he would have no choice but to put a NG Tube or reverse the ostomy. The NG Tube was not successful and my surgeon was going to surgery again which literally scared the poop out of me. I should have been chewing gum since my reversal because I later learned that chewing gum creates gas. The following afternoon which was Christmas Eve and my surgeon released me.
Here I am two years later, at first, I lost all the weight I gained from the TPN, but now I am starting to gain weight the right way. At times, I feel weak because it depends on what I eat. I love Skippy Creamy Peanut Butter and I Can't Believe It Is Not Butter Light, Mashed Potatoes and Gravy, Sicilian Shrimp from Olive Garden, Seafood, Pizza, Turkey, no red meats or chicken, and drink lots of water. Sometimes as soon as I finish eating my stomach sounds like it is going to explode and bamm it is like diarrhea. But it is far better than being constipated 24/7. However, there are alot of foods that I can't eat because I get constipated like refried beans. I love Bean Burritos with lots of mild sauce and gauc. But again, life is much better than it was 17 years ago. I won't give up what I love to eat if it is going to give me diarrhea, I just make sure I know where the restrooms are just in case.
As a result, it was all worth it. And I sincerely hope that your future surgeries are successful and painfree in which you can begin a whole new life without any bowel problems ever again. God Bless!