Surgery Specifics: How long did it take you to recover?

New Topic Post Reply Printable Version
[ << Previous Thread | Next Thread >> ]

80sChick
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 1054
   Posted 3/7/2010 3:41 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi guys,
As you may know, I'm considering an ileostomy. I have been learning so much on this board and I thank you all for that. My next questions are about surgery:
 
1. How long did it take you to recover? How long were you in the hospital?
I live alone and am wondering how long I should have someone come stay with me for after the surgery.
 
2. What kind of incision did you have? I have read that some people are having a colectomy done laproscopically, which I didn't know was possible, but it sounds like it really cuts down on recovery time and I can see why.
 
3. How long was it until you were able to eat normally? (My "normal" is so skewed at this point that I don't even know why I'm asking this, lol)
 
4. How long was it before you felt comfortable leaving your house?
 
Thank you all so much in advance for all of your information. It really is invaluable to me right now. 
28 Year old Female
Diagnosed with Crohn's Colitis March 2000
Recent possible diagnosis of IBS-D
 
Tried Meds: Asacol, Remicade, 6mp, Humira, Xifaxan, Apriso, Imuran, Rowasa Enemas, Colocort Enemas.
 
Tried Probiotics: Align (with no change except bloating) and VSL #3 DS (AWFUL diarrhea).
 
Currently on: 30mg Prednisone (Tapering SLOWLY from 40), Psyllium Seed Powder, Prenatal Vitamin, Vitamin B 12 Complex, Vitamin D/Calcium, Vesicare (for urinary retention). 


Trigirl
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 768
   Posted 3/7/2010 8:14 PM (GMT -7)   
Lots of questions. I was in the Hospital for 11 days. I needed the escape from stuff. Although that place comes with it's own challenges. I had a friend come and hang out with me for 10 days but really I could do everything myself, even change the appliance stuff. I went to a wedding reception for a few hours the day after I got out of the hospital but I wouldn't recommend that. I felt better after 10 weeks.

I have a big huge one even though Dr. said he would try to go for other lap.

Eat normally- well I'm still working that out the details of that one. I stayed on soups and soft foods for awhile. I guess by 5 months I was ok with whatever I wanted.

I started leaving my house for little walks everyday once I was home. they got longer as I felt better.

I really had no problems but getting the hang of leaking bags. Still working on that too.

Hope everything comes together for you and healthy one way or another soon.
Those things we keep trying to do get easier not because the feat gets easier but our ability to "do" gets better.
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
6 Grown kids, grandkids and a great husband to keep me busy


summerstorm
Veteran Member


Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 6571
   Posted 3/7/2010 8:18 PM (GMT -7)   
1. i was in for about 6 days, average is 4-5. If you can get someone to stay with you, that would be good, because you will be on pain pills and it can be dangerous to be alone.
recovery varies by person, i was doing fairly well about 4 weeks, but it can take up to a year to competly regain all your energy, i had regained enough to be able to do most things by about 8 weeks, but i would find that if went out side and did alot of yard work or soemthing i would need a nap.
2. i had a a full incision.
3.for the first 6 weeks you will need to eat low residue foods. Staying away from things like carrots, roast beef, lettuce, fresh fruits, anything hard to digest.
After the six weeks you can start adding a new food, like maybe one at breakfast and one at dinner, to see if you are gonna have problems, and which foods will give you gas. Like i found out that cheese sticks tend to get stuck, so i stay away from them or only eat one or two.
4.well i had to go back to the dr for my checkup one week after i came home, i wasnt worried about leaving, except that i was nasty dirty, hadnt shaved my legs and was wearing horrible clothes, lol. Also for the first few weeks i didnt feel like going anyway, esp since i had my butt sewn up too, sitting was hard, and potholes and railroad tracks were murder!
But once that quit hurting as bad i was out and about, i worried soem at first, but never too badly. I keep a change of clothes with me at all time, along with my sons change of clothes, bless him that kid throws up all the time! lol. anyway, once i realized you really couldnt see it and it didnt smell or anyting i was fine with it.
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-


Allison77
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2005
Total Posts : 421
   Posted 3/9/2010 12:10 PM (GMT -7)   
1. I was in for 9 days, had a reaction to a blood transfusion (darn my rare blood!) on my 2nd day and that set me back. If I had been ok, i'd have been out in 4-5 days. Walk!! As much as you can. At home I had the nurses come in every other day to pack my wound (had a giant to-do with a drain tube..ick) and help me with Oscar. Otherwise, I was doing everything except vacuuming. Slowly of course, but I was ok.
2. I had the full incision. Had 5 ft. of intestine removed 10 years ago, they just followed the old scar. No biggie, staples were a little un-nerving though. Felt and looked like a science experiment gone horribly wrong. Hubby counted, 29 staples! Now, it's just a scar and I show it off to everyone as my badge of health. My rear end was sewn up as well, didn't really feel anything except the occasional tug. I did have to take a hand mirror about 2 weeks after (took that long to work up the nerve) surgery and take a look. The operation sounded worse then it looked. My rear looks fine, you would never know unless I bent over.
3. I ate the low residue diet for oh, about 3 minutes. Honestly, as soon as I was home I was eating everything. Stayed away from the foods that I couldn't eat before the surgery, but did a Burger King Whopper (minus the onion and tomato) in about 2 minutes flat. Have slowly worked up to nuts/seeds and my beloved popcorn. I am now eating meat on a regular basis.
4. I left the house on the 4th day of being home to hit up a Christmas party. I lasted 1/2 an hour and then had to go home to rest, but I made it out! It was 2 weeks before I felt comfortable driving myself anywhere. Even then, I had someone with me. I guess it was probably about 3 weeks before I felt really comfy going anywhere alone. I packed a huge purse with everything I could think of, but soon realized I didn't need half those things! Your ostomy will be freeing. You'll be free to get up and go whenever/wherever you want!

-Allie
www.oscartheostomy.blogspot.com
-Allison
RX Crohn's 1999, over 30 surgeries, 3 strokes, permanent colostomy and rectum removal.
 
"The most unfortunate thing that happens to a person who fears failure is that he limits himself by becoming afraid to try anything new."


80sChick
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 1054
   Posted 3/9/2010 12:18 PM (GMT -7)   
Thank you, Allison!

Your post really put my mind at ease. I have been craving a whopper for MONTHS and that would be one of the first things I'd eat too!!! I just said that to my friend the other day :)

My parents said they'd come (they live in a different state), one at a time, to take care of me, if I have surgery. My mom would come first while I was in the hospital and stuff and then my dad the week after taht. My dad suggested taking me to their condo (about a 4 hour drive) for a few days while he was here...would that be an option? I'd be resting, obviously...just not near my surgeon and stuff.
28 Year old Female
Diagnosed with Crohn's Colitis March 2000
Recent possible diagnosis of IBS-D
 
Tried Meds: Asacol, Remicade, 6mp, Humira, Xifaxan, Apriso, Imuran, Rowasa Enemas, Colocort Enemas.
 
Tried Probiotics: Align (with no change except bloating) and VSL #3 DS (AWFUL diarrhea).
 
Currently on: 30mg Prednisone (Tapering SLOWLY from 40), Psyllium Seed Powder, Prenatal Vitamin, Vitamin B 12 Complex, Vitamin D/Calcium, Vesicare (for urinary retention). 


80sChick
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 1054
   Posted 3/9/2010 12:18 PM (GMT -7)   
Thank you, Allison!

Your post really put my mind at ease. I have been craving a whopper for MONTHS and that would be one of the first things I'd eat too!!! I just said that to my friend the other day :)

My parents said they'd come (they live in a different state), one at a time, to take care of me, if I have surgery. My mom would come first while I was in the hospital and stuff and then my dad the week after taht. My dad suggested taking me to their condo (about a 4 hour drive) for a few days while he was here...would that be an option? I'd be resting, obviously...just not near my surgeon and stuff.
28 Year old Female
Diagnosed with Crohn's Colitis March 2000
Recent possible diagnosis of IBS-D
 
Tried Meds: Asacol, Remicade, 6mp, Humira, Xifaxan, Apriso, Imuran, Rowasa Enemas, Colocort Enemas.
 
Tried Probiotics: Align (with no change except bloating) and VSL #3 DS (AWFUL diarrhea).
 
Currently on: 30mg Prednisone (Tapering SLOWLY from 40), Psyllium Seed Powder, Prenatal Vitamin, Vitamin B 12 Complex, Vitamin D/Calcium, Vesicare (for urinary retention). 


Clicky
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2008
Total Posts : 166
   Posted 3/9/2010 12:40 PM (GMT -7)   

Hi!

1) I was in hospital 11 days (for total colectomy, loop illeostomy and Jpouch construction)

2) Fully open surgery!

3) I am still being careful with fibre/nuts, etc (I had surgery on 11 Jan)

4) I left the house a week after getting home.

 

Good luck with your decision.  I am SO glad I had it done and if the jPouch does not work after take down I know I will be able to live happily with and illesotomy.

 

Clicky

 


Diag proctitis 97 - major flare and extension to left sided colitis Aug 2006 - present.

I have bled every day since Aug 2006 (I quit smoking in June 2006).

Imuran (Azathioprine) game me liver damage. LDN no luck.  Asacol and mesalazine enemas - seemed to make worse. Lots of Prednisone :(  No luck on drugs!

JPouch, total colectomy and ileostomy (part 1) completed Jan 2010 :)

UC no more!!!
 


Christine1946
Veteran Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 5919
   Posted 3/9/2010 1:26 PM (GMT -7)   
     Clicky...you had it all done at once?  WOW...I would like that!
 
Diagnosed with ulcerative proctitis in 1998 in hospital
Hospitalized (2nd time) in May 2008 for ten days.
Remission Nov 08 thru May of 09.
Flare May of 09 thru Aug of 09.  Very short remission.  Flared again Nov 1st.  Started Remicade Nov 18th.  Felt great after first two infusions.  Suffered a set back after 3rd infusion on Dec 31st.  Meds: Benicar, Colazal, Prednisone (hopefully short course), Calcium with D, multivitamin, probiotic.  Rectal meds..Proctofoam, cort suppositories....cannot retain the enemas.


sammies
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2008
Total Posts : 493
   Posted 3/9/2010 1:33 PM (GMT -7)   
I had a bit of a hard time but I was way malnourished, underweight, and pretty sick with crohn's before my surgery. I was in the hospital just 4 days! I walked, asked lots of questions, and ate fairly well. However, I required a lot of assistance at home. I had a visiting nurse every day for the first 2 weeks. Then, my husband learned to pack my wound. My incision was reallyl neat and small and healed easily. If I didn't have the bag, I could still wear a bikini (not that anyone really wants to see me in one). I had a very difficult time eating which is normal and having folks around to cook and help me was excellent. It also really helped relieve my husband. I could only do the stairs once a day for a while. Physical therapist came to the house. Although I left the house in less than a week for an appt with the surgeon an hour away. He let me drive within 3 weeks and placed no restrictions on my eating or moving. The physical therapy was awesome.

In my opinion, it sounds like you are a lot healthier than I was but I would have your folks come to you so that you can adjust your surroundings as you need to and they can help with laundry, stocking your firdge/freezer, cleaning, going through your mail and receiving visits and guests.

Unfortunately, I got food poisoning less than a month after surgery! Whew was that a mess and it set me back quite a bit. I also needed 6 months off from work --I think I may be the extreme.

I don't regret the surgery one bit. The whole bag thing can be tough sometimes but I got my life back.

wishing you well.
24+ years with Crohn's/colitis; fistulizing crohn's; ileostomy and proctocolectomy; TPN, propranolol and xanax; anemia of chronic disease


Allison77
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2005
Total Posts : 421
   Posted 3/9/2010 4:07 PM (GMT -7)   
LOL @ 80s...Im not condoning stuffing your face with a Whopper 3 days out of the gate, but If you can handle it...go for it! I had been so sick for about a month leading up to the surgery, I had lost about 20lbs and was surviving on Booster Juice and Boost's with the occasional smashed potato, ANYTHING that I could swallow, keep down and not be in pain...went into my mouth. LOL. Wait, that could be taken the wrong way....hahahaha.
I think you might be better staying at your place over your parent's and just have them come stay with you until you can be on your own. It's much nicer to be surrounded by familiar things and the sooner you are able to establish a routine, the quicker you will get better! I used the surgery/staying close to home excuse for getting out of lot's of obligations as well. Sounds horrible, but my husband did the same "Allie just came home from the hospital 3 weeks ago, so no, I can't come to....<- insert event here" Us Canadians.....horrible horrible horrible. LOL.

-Allie
www.oscartheostomy.blogspot.com
-Allison
RX Crohn's 1999, over 30 surgeries, 3 strokes, permanent colostomy and rectum removal.
 
"The most unfortunate thing that happens to a person who fears failure is that he limits himself by becoming afraid to try anything new."


Clicky
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2008
Total Posts : 166
   Posted 3/9/2010 11:31 PM (GMT -7)   
Hey Christine

That was all just part 1 of 2 - I am booked for takedown on 1 April!
Diag proctitis 97 - major flare and extension to left sided colitis Aug 2006 - present.

I have bled every day since Aug 2006 (I quit smoking in June 2006).

Imuran (Azathioprine) game me liver damage. LDN no luck.  Asacol and mesalazine enemas - seemed to make worse. Lots of Prednisone :(  No luck on drugs!

JPouch, total colectomy and ileostomy (part 1) completed Jan 2010 :)

UC no more!!!
 


pam222
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2009
Total Posts : 985
   Posted 3/10/2010 6:25 AM (GMT -7)   
Christine1946 said...
Clicky...you had it all done at once? WOW...I would like that!


That is generally what is done in the first surgery. The second surgery is the "takedown" where you lose the ostomy and start using the j-pouch. The j-pouch is constructed in the first surgery but not used. It is given time to heal while you have the temporary ostomy. Some surgeons do a 3-part surgery also and some will even do a one step.
26 year old female
Diagnosed with unspecified UC 11/08
Asacol, Prednisone, 3 infusions of Remicade with no success
8/09 colonoscopy shows that the whole colon is affected
12/18/09 First part of J-Pouch surgery; recessed stoma
12/30/09 Second part of J-Pouch surgery too soon; fistula
1/9/10 Second Ileostomy Surgery with sparing of the J-Pouch
1/25/10 Stoma Revision Surgery and Fistula Repair
3/16/10 Going to try to go back to the J-Pouch again
Imodium (8/day), Questran (3/day), TPN 12 hours/day, IV fluids 4 hours/day


Alittlelighter34
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2009
Total Posts : 24
   Posted 3/10/2010 9:32 AM (GMT -7)   
1. I felt recovered after 5 and a half weeks, and was in the hospital for 5 days. I live with someone, but could have gotten by without her. It is more comforting to have someone there just in case though!
2. I have the incision that goes from the pubic bone vertically up to just past the belly button. They used some type of synthetic skin stuff to close the outer skin, so it didn't hurt as much as stitches would, and healed a lot faster.
3. I was eating normally in the hospital a few days before I was discharged, but I didn't really feel good hunger until I was at home.
4. I felt fine leaving my house from the first day I was there. I was going on walks and being driven to the grocery store, medical supply store and other places. It was good for me to get out and do things quickly so I could get used to the situation.
10 years of Indeterminate Colitis, and total procto-colectomy with ileostomy on 10/16/09! SO far so good!

New Topic Post Reply Printable Version
Forum Information
Currently it is Sunday, November 19, 2017 11:02 PM (GMT -7)
There are a total of 2,895,620 posts in 317,815 threads.
View Active Threads


Who's Online
This forum has 157425 registered members. Please welcome our newest member, bzymom.
245 Guest(s), 5 Registered Member(s) are currently online.  Details
Andie59, 1000Daisies, InTheShop, dorri, wjstreetjr


About Us | Advertise | Donate
Newsletter | Privacy Policy & Disclaimer
Follow HealingWell.com on Facebook Follow HealingWell.com on Twitter Follow HealingWell.com on Pinterest
©1996-2017 HealingWell.com LLC  All Rights Reserved.