How Do They Do a Reversal Surgery?

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New Member

Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 5/28/2006 4:48 PM (GMT -6)   
hi everyone i just joined today!!!  I've had Crohn's for about 5 or 6 years.  I had two surgeries in April (the last just 3 days before my 16th birthdayVIEW IMAGE)which totally removed all of my diseased bowl.  The last surgery was an ileostomy procedure.  I'm scheduled to have the reversal sometime in september or october and I wanted to know how the surgen reconnects the bowl.  I am extremely nervous and it would really calm my nerves if i knew what was going to happen.  I've looked all over the internet and in encyclepedias, but i can't seem to find anything on the subject.  If anyone can help me out that would be fantastic!!

Midwest Phil
Regular Member

Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 43
   Posted 5/28/2006 9:19 PM (GMT -6)   

AllieR,  Is your surgeon going to include a J or K pouch or has that even been discussed?  I had my colon taken in October '05  and in February they did the reconnect.  They wanted to wait 6 months actually, however my gallbladder was acting up and they didn't want to open me up twice.  In April they did my final take down on my ileostomy, so I am now recouping from that.

So how do they reconnect?  My understanding is, and what they did with me, was they removed the rectum, then took the end of the ileostomy and pulled it down.  They connected that to where my rectum was, and then pulled the small intestine back over to where the ileostomy use to be and opened up a new one.  I remained with the second ileostomy for three months while the connection down where the rectum use to be healed.  During the final take down, they just took the second ileostomy, cut it loose and sutured it up.  Put it back inside and put two sutures over where the ileostomy came out of my stomach.  Within 4 weeks it filled in with scar tissue and "Poof", I'm done.  Now when they went in to do the reconnect, they went back in through the original scar/opening from October when they originally took my colon. 

Overall the first surgery was the worst because it was not scheduled and an emergency surgery so I didn't know what to expect.  The second one (the reconnect) wasn't as bad because I was more prepared for it and about half the problems than the first surgery.  Recovery time was quicker and hospital time was shorter, 4 days.  The final take down was a cake walk in comparison.  It was done on a Friday afternoon and I was home by Sunday afternoon.  Hope that helps.  Let me know if you need more info.  Phil

Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 1251
   Posted 5/29/2006 5:36 AM (GMT -6)   
With Crohns an internal pouch isn't possible (ie the j pouch or kock's pouch) unfortunately because the Crohns can come and infect the internal pouch necessitating further surgery and loss of sorely needed bowel :( Having said that, there are some surgeons who say you can have a j pouch or kock's pouch if you have crohns that has been contained to the large bowel only for at least 5 years cos the chances of it striking anywhere else are remote.

Allie, I'm presuming you have a loop ileostomy (ie two openings - the main stoma and a smaller one called a mucous fistula (connected to the lower bowel and rectum) which might be a little hard to see for some people). When they reconnect you they'll just join the two bits back together again.

If, instead, you have a hartmann's pouch, then you'll have a stoma but the other end (connected to your rectum) will be closed off and floating around inside you. Once again, the surgeon will just reconnect the two bits together for you.

Good luck.
I have had an ileostomy for 30 years now due to UC.
I'm not a complete idiot - some parts of me are missing!

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