small bowel obstruction

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Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 212
   Posted 5/3/2011 8:06 PM (GMT -7)   
It's been quite some time since I've been on the site. Miss you guys. Wanted to reach out to see if anyone has advice for me. I had my ileostomy (of 3 1/2 years) reversed January 17 as well as a hernia repair. I'm sitting in the hospital typing this up just getting over a small bowel obstruction. My husband brought me in at 4 a.m. Sunday with severe abdominal pain and dry heaving. I had the pain all that day and was not able to eat until Saturday after 4 p.m. at which I through up everything. Sunday a.m., the hospital put a NG tube down through my nostril to my stomach. It was there for 2 days. I don't know if anyone has ever had this procedure done, but it was extremely painful . Anyway, the NG and lots of walking did clear the obstruction.

My question is...does anyone have advice on how I can avoid this happening again? I was told it was probably from the area where my intestines were rejoined. Probably, scar tissue and the obstruction probably developed over time.

Reach out to me if you have any suggestions/advice. Thanks!

Dave D
Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2005
Total Posts : 404
   Posted 5/4/2011 3:39 AM (GMT -7)   
When I had my J-pouch(s) I obstructed 5 times and yes it was at a gut splice from the original surgery. My advice is avoid any foods that might constipate you, including meds like Cipro and Flagyl, if they tend to slow you. No nuts, popcorn, or antything that does not digest easily. Now that you have experienced an obstruction, if it begins again, eat nothing until it clears. drink water but not so much it makes you feel nausiated. Sometimes you can walk off the obstruction.
Btw, which do you like the least, the pain or the NG tube?
Dave D
Grandpa Dave is 72.
IBD since 1977
Perforation and resection 1993
Diagnosed as Ulcerative Colitis 1994
IBD since 1977
Received first J-Pouch 1997
Diagnosed as Chron's 2004
Redo, resection, and remove camera capsule 2005
Contracted Scleritis of the Eye 2008
Mild Stroke 2009.
Permenant Ileostomy 2011.

Four Grandkids

Older than dirt

2b ColonFree
Veteran Member

Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 2603
   Posted 5/4/2011 3:59 AM (GMT -7)   
sorry to hear of the obstruction, but glad it's cleared now. i had an NG for 5 days post colectomy. it's def a nasty thing. avoid all fiberous foods, seeds, nuts, beens. low residue diet is best to a minimize chances of obstruction. always make sure you drink enough water too. is the anatomosis site narrowed? hope it all works out for you. feel good!
06/05/2007 - STARR procedure
colonic inertia w/pelvic floor dysfunction
08/16/2009 - total colectomy w/ileorectal anastomosis
07/08/2010 - loop ileostomy

Veteran Member

Date Joined May 2009
Total Posts : 827
   Posted 5/4/2011 7:53 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi, Sorry to hear that this has happened.

We were told that 30% of people that have had any sort of bowel surgery will obstruct in the first 10 years and 30% of those will obstruct within the first month post surgery. My son obstructed after each of his surgeries but has not had any problem since. It can happen, with no real rhyme or reason, to anyone and there is no reason to think that it will happen again. Only if you obstruct again would I start to worry about how to deal with it. For now, I would try to forget this and put it in the past.
Mom to Dillon (age 19) who had three major UC flares over two years....Very sick. Colectomy Sept/09, J pouch built Jan/10 and take down Feb/10. Now out living life at University and doing great. NO MEDS

Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 212
   Posted 5/4/2011 10:58 AM (GMT -7)   
Thanks everyone for your replies. I addressed everything below. You guys rock!

Dave D., I LOVE LOVE LOVE popcorn and nuts. It's too bad that I'd have to give them up, especially when I have to watch my sugars and those are two things that kinda fit in a low glycemic diet - especially the nuts. I do take an iron pill everyday which may be causing the obstruction too. My problem is I do still have problems with rectal incontinence so I've tried to keep myself from having loose stoole and diareaha. It's so scarey trying to work and keep myself continent. I'm only 46 years old. I have many more years to work before I can retire. BTW, I guess if I had to chose between the abdominal pain and the NG, I'd have to say the NG, but the NG sure did mess up my left side sinuses. Even my jaw and teeth hurt for a day. During the two days, my left I wept the entire time - burning my cheek because of the potassium they were giving me and my nose ran like water uncontrollably.

2bColonFree, WOW that is so horrible to hear you've been through this 5 times. I could not imagine. I'm for sure going to watch what I eat. I started having pains last month, but was able to overcome the pain after a weekend home. Kept a heating pad on my stomach. Not sure if that was good or not. Also, I took Symax for pain one of my colorectal doctors had prescribed me. That helped to a point. This time, not at all.

Collicat, those percentages certainly are humbling. I was told too that scar tissue can play into it as well. That's what scares me to think that it could get worse. I guess I'm going to have to learn to deal with it on a day to day basis. Also, chew my food really well. I'm so glad your son is in college and sounds like he's dealing with this really well.

2b ColonFree
Veteran Member

Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 2603
   Posted 5/5/2011 8:53 AM (GMT -7)   
ohio, i guess i didn't explain it right, i didn't have the ng 5 times lol, i had it in for 5 days straight. i had an ileus after the colectomy and after it was over they took the ng out.
did i understand you right? you had an ileostomy for 3 1/2 yrs then was reconnected? why did you have to wait so long to get reconnected?
hope your getting better and stronger.
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