Rectal surgery

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Regular Member

Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 127
   Posted 2/14/2010 4:21 PM (GMT -7)   
My husband had ileostomy surgery due to 34 years of ulcerative colitis back in 2007 at the Cleveland Clinic.  He did not have his rectal stump removed.  We are returning to the Cleveland Clinic next month to discuss and possibily schedule surgery this summer to remove his rectum.  We were told by the surgeon there would be a six week recovery period.  When we looked into postings, we discovered that there were many people that were having problems two years past surgery and daily nursing care.  My husband is a college professor and is not able to be away more than six weeks and having problems a year or two out from surgery is unacceptable.    We need to know the pros and cons of this surgery from those that have been there.  FYI, my husband is 58 and the surgeon had said that surgery is easier the younger you are.  That being said, my husband is having doubts of having the surgery unless the surgeon and others can convince him that it will be ok.  Your help and advice is needed. 

Equestrian Mom
Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 3115
   Posted 2/14/2010 5:24 PM (GMT -7)   
I don't think you should necessarily take every post as the way things go for everyone...most people who are out living their lives don't post as often!

I had a proctocolectomy a few years ago (colon/rectum/anus gone at the same time :-) ) and aside from being a little older (than previous surgeries) my recovery was pretty normal for all at once. My dx is Crohn's and I also had fistulas so that made things a little harder to heal. It doesn't sound like your hubby will be experiencing that!

I think having it removed is a good thing...if you aren't going to use it, why keep it?!!!

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Feb 2006
Total Posts : 5698
   Posted 2/14/2010 7:20 PM (GMT -7)   

Your husband should be fine.


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 Jun 2005
Total Posts : 981
   Posted 2/15/2010 5:05 AM (GMT -7)   
I had my proctocolectomy 3 months after my ileostomy surgery and glad I did as I had lots of issues with disease in the rectum and constant muck coming out but now its all good and my recovery for that surgery was pretty good the only problem was sitting down for a little while was not fun but as each day went by I felt so much better. I am 47 years old so I was no spring chicken going through this type of surgery either :-) I have no regrets. Let us know how you go and what you decide.

Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 275
   Posted 2/15/2010 1:16 PM (GMT -7)   
Although it it ha taken me a very long time to heal, I pretty much resumed 'regular' activities about 6 weeks after surgery but with a caution. It never stopped me from doing things!
Crohn's Disease, Colostomy due to cancer and I make darned good dill pickles.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 768
   Posted 2/15/2010 3:16 PM (GMT -7)   
I had my rectum removed and I was walking around after 3 weeks pretty good and 6 weeks even better. I attribute the fast healing to sitz baths and rest and Polysporine. (like Bacetracine in USA)

6 months-riding a bike 1 or 2 hours a day and feeling like, yeah, it was so worth it!
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 2007
Total Posts : 2765
   Posted 2/18/2010 4:33 AM (GMT -7)   

Everyone's experience is different. I was out driving and grocery shopping 2 weeks after they removed my colon and rectum and felt really good 6 weeks post-op. I had Crohn's in the rectum, so it felt great to be disease-free for the first time in 7 years.

Best of luck with your decision.

Dx'd Crohn's in '99 at age 28. Proctocolectomy and permanent ileostomy in '06.
Disease-free and medicine-free since surgery and very thankful to be healthy again.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 6571
   Posted 2/18/2010 12:31 PM (GMT -7)   
I had mine done the same time i had my ileo and honestly, it itched more than anything, the itching was horrible!
It hurt for a while at first, obviously, but i found if i didnt sit directly on my butt, kind of leaned back some, and sat on soft things it wasnt bad. going over railroad tracks in the car was hard,lol. Its been almost three years and i still have what are known as phantom pains, like where i really think ineed to go to the bathroom, but i dont, and it goes away on its own.
to me really, it was just weird to think of not having a butt hole, i couldnt get my head aroudn how they take out a hole! lol.
But anyway, i think he will be fine.
UC for 8 years, before finally kicking its butt and having a permanent ileostomy April 17 2007! 
-I have gone to find myself, if i get back before i return, keep me here-

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