not sleeping after ileostomy sugery and sufferinh from anxiety

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anne h
New Member

Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 12/11/2007 6:00 PM (GMT -6)   
I am writing to ask how long it is to get back to normal after ileostomy surgery.  My dad had this op 5 weeks ago now and seems to be getting worse.  He cannot sleep and is very anxious.  His doctor has prescibed a short term dose of sleeping pills and made a referral for specialised nurse to go in and talk to my dad and calm him down.. He is eating fine but just cannot switch off when he goes to bed.  I have even got a hypnatherapist involved but my dad says this is not working just like he has said about the sleeping tablets.  He looks worn out and is suffering from hot and cold sweats and dizzyness and pacing around the house like a demented caged animal.  My mam and I just dont know what to do next.  We keep saying this will get better but when.  He went to see the onchologist yesterday to dicuss his future care.  He has been offered chemo as cancer was found in one of his lymph nodes during the operation.  He need not have it also so I know he will be worrying about this.  Any info would be appreciated PLEASE!!!!  Has anyone else been like this?

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 2765
   Posted 12/11/2007 10:42 PM (GMT -6)   
Welcome to Healing Well. I'm glad you found us, but am sorry to hear that your dad is having complications after his surgery and now a cancer diagnosis. That's a lot to deal with in a short period of time. I wouldn't be surprised if he has a lot of anxiety over all of this.
I did not experience what you're dad is going through after any of my surgeries. Is he on any new medications or has there been a change in any of his medications? Is he drinking caffeine or eating a lot of sugar? Has the doctor done a complete blood work up on him?
I hope you get some answers soon, so he can get some rest. I will keep you all in my prayers. Take care and please keep us posted on how he's doing.
Dx'd Crohn's in '99 at 28. Proctocolectomy & ileostomy in '06. Remission since surgery.
Pain-free, med-free, and very thankful to be healthy again :)

Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 6571
   Posted 12/11/2007 10:53 PM (GMT -6)   
cecilia has a good idea there to check the meds and all, those can certaintly cause problems like that.
I didn't have any trouble like that, i didn't sleep well for the first two weeks or so, because i couldnt' get comfy though.
The sleeping pills didnt' work at all? if they are time released they won't work for him, people with ostomies can't use time relased meds, cause they don't stay in long enough.
Anyway, i hope you get some answers and that you're dad gets to feeling better.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2006
Total Posts : 629
   Posted 12/14/2007 10:01 AM (GMT -6)   
i had bigtime sleeping problems after my surgery last year. i was only getting 1-2hrs of sleep per night, sometimes less. that lasted about 3 months, BUT i can't say i was feeling crappy due to lack of sleep, it just seemed to be "enough" for me. i looked like crap though. i'm back to "normal" sleeping patterns now probs sleeping 10hrs haha. I'd advise to be careful with the sleeping pills, one still needs to be able to empty the bag should the need arise while sleeping.

anxiety is pretty normal, i went through it too, but sounds like it's pretty bad over there. have you looked into local support groups? talking about it with other ppl who have similar issues could be a really good thing.

Dec 2006: Proctocolectomy/permanent ileostomy
Since 1991: Indeterminate crohn's/ulserative colitis

Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 254
   Posted 12/14/2007 12:30 PM (GMT -6)   

Hi Anne:

Sorry to hear your dad is having a tough go of it. I empathize with him. I was a self-described 50 year-old "tough guy" before I got sick. It was quite a shock to me, not only physically, but pschologically, emotionally and spiritually. I too have trouble with anxiety and insomnia. I take Klonopin (Lorazapam) when I really feel anxious. It helps. It also helped me also to maintain a consistent regimen, going to bed at a certain time and waking up at a certain time. Some nights I lay in bed (reading) for quite some time before I sleep. But this routine seems to be working.

It is so great that he has you helping him! However, it might help if he himself gets "on-line" and researches himself. When I finally joined this forum it really helped my outlook plus I learned volumes!

Good luck and keep us updated on his progress.



Ileostomy since August 2005.
As result of surgery (modified whipple) for necrotising pancreatitis. Removal of gallbladder, 2/3 of pancreas, resections of large and small intestines. Massive infection. 8 months in ICU at Westchester County M.C. (I think that's a record). Second surgery for resection due to fistulas in January 2007. Been slowly recovering since then. Possible reconnection candidate.

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