Can't urinate after total proctocolectomy

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New Member

Date Joined Feb 2010
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 2/12/2010 2:58 PM (GMT -6)   
My 68 year old dad had a total proctocolectomy five weeks ago.  Thankfully they were able to remove all the colon cancer.  However, he has not regained the ability to urinate on his own.  Today he went to the doctor again to try to urinate but nothing happened.  They scheduled the next appointment to try urinating without a catheter in another five weeks.  Has anyone ever experienced the same problem after surgery?  I am trying to understand his chances of recovering this funciton.  Also I like this forum, hopefully I can get him to participate himself. Thanks!

Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 511
   Posted 2/13/2010 9:24 AM (GMT -6)   
I had issues with not being able to go and then experiences some pain when doing so for close to a month or more after my surgery.  However, it definitely didn't last as long as your dad's issues!  My goodness!!!!
I hope he finds some sort of resolution soon!
: )  Robin
29 year old Mommy of an amazing 2 year old and Wife for 3 years!
Dx-May 2007 Moderate/Severe Pancolitis - failed all medications
Proctocolectomy w/ permanent ileostomy on 02/06/09!!!
"Your mind is like a parachute, it only works when it is open."  -Unknown

Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2006
Total Posts : 5698
   Posted 2/13/2010 10:29 AM (GMT -6)   

Yes, this can happen after surgery but it should improve with time.



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

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 768
   Posted 2/14/2010 2:00 AM (GMT -6)   
I had some problem that it felt like there was no muscle to push out the urine. It did get better.

I have another question kind of related for anyone who care to comment. Now I have started to just leak sometimes. Been trying to do keegles(?) but am feeling rather insecure all over again about control issues.
This heights by great men reached and kept, were not obtained by sudden flight, but they while their companions slept, were toiling upward in the night.
H.W. Longfellow
Thyroid cancer removed 1988
Stomach problems finally figured out 2001 Crohn's/Colitus
Tried every drug without much success
Colon/rectal cancer removed Aug 2009

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 733
   Posted 2/14/2010 11:25 AM (GMT -6)   
I was cath'd for my entire post-op time in the hospital (about 12 days), and then I self-cath'd at home for about another 2 weeks.

Then one day, I just had to pee so bad I sat down on the toilet, and everything worked fine again. IT was like someone waved a magic want over my muscles and they all worked again.

Your dad's dilemma does seem to be lasting a long time, but I'm also 28 vs. 68, so my healing time is a bit faster. There's still plenty of time and hope that his muscles will re-learn how to do it on their own, but he really needs to be "trying" to pee and not just automatically cathing. I don't know what it involves for a man vs. a woman as far as cathing at home, but if he has the opportunity to try without the cath, make sure he does every so often.

Hope things get better for him soon!

New Member

Date Joined Feb 2010
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 2/16/2010 11:18 AM (GMT -6)   
I know that my dad is reluctant to self cath because of the discomfort as well as maybe being overwhelming in addition to the bag.  However, from what I have read and the responses on this site, he may need to do this to regain function.  Any advice from men and the self cath process including pain, discomfort...
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