Oh my God, gela, I had the same thing happen to me. I had my son back in 1986. It was a natural childbirth and the doctor gave me an episiotomy. I ended up tearing so bad with a 4th degree laceration. Back then I developed a rectovaginal fistula. I was in the hospital for six days with an infection. I kept telling my doctor there was something wrong down there, but he ignored me saying it was just my uterus contracting - trying to go back to normal. I knew he was wrong. By the time I got home, I freaked out because I had stool coming through my vagina. I was only 22 at the time. Over time, my fistula healed. But now in my 40s, I've had some problems with leakage. When I talked to a colon/rectal surgeon who I went to see for a colonoscopy, he took a look at me and couldn't believe what I told him happened so many years ago. I ended up having a very thin layer of tissue between my rectum and vagina. He said he could help me. Before my surgery, doctors ran test and noticed I had very little muscle and had nerve damage. So, I had surgery in June 2007, developed an abscess almost immediately after the surgery, so I was back under the knife. I spent two weeks in the hospital trying to recover. By the time I went home, I was back in the hospital to have everything repaired because it had all fallen apart. I received a temporary loop ileostomy July 2007. I was only to have it three months, but here it is 14 months later. My fourth surgery was in October 2007 to once again try to fix a fistula by doing a z plasty or flap. After four surgeries with my doctor, I decided to find someone else. I went to the Cleveland Clinic. I wanted a women's perspective because my male doctor was just too proud of his work with the z plasty/flap. I ended up with this "bulge" down there that to me, even though my husband and I will be the only ones to see it, bugs the hell out of me.
To make a long story short, I was feeling pretty good about my visit to the Cleveland Clinic. My new doctor went in to fix the rectovaginal fistula in May 2008. By July, it seemed to look like it healed, but she wanted to put me under and get a better look. Unfortunately, it still has not healed. Before putting me under in August, my doctor lined the head of gynecology at CC to see what she could do to get rid of the bulge I despise. This gynecologist was going to be present in the OR as well as bringing in a plastic surgeon to do their part. Because my fistula did not heal, the doctors did not attempt the surgery. I was devastated. My doctor had me stay over night so she and the gynecologist could consult my husband and me of options. They told me to really think about what is important to me. My doctors don't think I have a good chance of being continent because I no longer have the muscles needed to keep me continent. Evidently, I no longer have a sphincter? Furthermore, my doctor was shocked as to how much scar tissue I have. I cried so much because I thought I would have to have my ileostomy forever.
A few days after returning from the CC, I decided to quit feeling sorry for myself and do lots of research on my options. I read either on this forum or the J-Pouch forum of someone in Canada who is going through artificial sphincter surgery. It will be interesting to find out her results.
How long ago to you give birth? Was this just recent or years ago like me?
Hope to hear from you.