Hello Forum Friends,
I have just had my ileostomy reversal on November 3rd and I thought I would post a few tips that really helped me through the surgery and the days in the hospital. I am now home recovering and each day is a little better, but it's always up and down. This is especially for 2RisK and others who have posted that they are facing the reversal surgery soon.
1. I would highly recommend the CD "Meditation for Successful Surgery" by BelleRuth Naperstek. It's a 2 CD set with visualizations, calming music and affirmations . . . one CD is just the most calming music immaginable. I listened to the set several times before surgery and especially on the night before surgery . . . then I listened in the hospital. I found that it not only calmed my nerves, it really helped to manage my pain and let me drift off to sleep even in the chaos that is a university hospital.
2. The Dr. never told me what to expect, but I woke up with an NG tube (the worst!) and IV . . . I had to have the NG tube for three days due to some complications with my surgery. As long as the NG tube was in, I could not eat. As long as I could not eat, I was not getting my bowels moving. Without bowel movement, I would not be able to get the NG tube out (sort of a catch 22). Anyway, on election day, my bowels moved!! (I'm a Dem., so I am convinced it was a powerful positive energy thing).
So, the good news is that your bowels will move, the bad news is that they will move uncontrollably for the first few days . . . so more tips . . .
3. Bring your own Depends diapers to the hospital. The diapers provided to me could cover a horse, and they had to be thrown out each time because they were not "pull ups". I bought a box of Depends that could be pulled up and used again (if not soiled) and they fit!!
4. I used ConvaTec Protective Ointment 3 - Aloe Vesta each time I went to the bathroom. Your butt will be sore as can be, but by putting the ointment on each time, it will be bearable.
5. Ask for Immodium if the bowels are still uncontrollable after a day or two. They gave me one immodium and it really helped.
6. I'm on a low residue diet for now and it seems to be doing OK, I am still too loose, but I am only going about 8-10 times a day now and I think it will get better.
I hope that these tips might be useful and I hope that you all have successful surgeries and complete healing!!!