I'll tell you what my thoughts were...so many UC and CD patients say after they've had the surgery "Why didn't I do that sooner?!" And I didn't want to be that person.
The side effects many of you have mentioned I experienced pretty hard core. I was in 40mg of Prednisone, 4800mg of Asacol and my Remicade was being administered every four weeks just to get me through till surgery. My immune system was a mess. I had staph infections, one MRSA that could have killed me (I never knew the severity of it until I was out of the hospital...good thing I made it through!), the infections led to surgery that resulted in open wounds, aka, holes in my bicep, shoulder and heel. This was something I struggled with for three months straight. I sweated each time a pimpled would come up on my shoulder or arm. My body could not fight the simplest form of staph and we all have it! A runny nose would lead to immediate Mucinex. The Prednisone had my body so swollen I was miserable. I'm sure there are other side effects that I've forgotten, but these were my main issues with all the medications that were doing nothing for the UC.
I also opted for my permanent ileo because my surgeon explained that though fertility may be a little more difficult after this surgery, I would be at high risk having a baby with a j-pouch. He told me that I could miscarry at any time during my pregnancy and there could be complications with the j-pouch that would result in surgery during the pregnancy. I didn't like what he had to say. However, I have met people online who have had successful pregnancies with the j-pouch. But I personally am in love Penelope (my stoma). She has allowed me to be healthy and never ever go poo again!!! I could not wait to nix my colon and say 'choa' the bathroom gods of pain!
I'm five months healthy and very very very happy! When I first read about the j-pouch I was scared b/c it didn't quite seem like something I would be willing to take the risks for. I've tried enough things that have failed in this medical UC area, and I would be devestated if the j-pouch didn't work...and I really didn't want to go poo anymore...seriously. So, summerstorm was the best help ever in my decision b/c we're the same age she loves having an ileo. I realized that there's a great chance that I would like my ileo too b/c it's the one-time operation that gives me back my life and I never have to look back. That's what I wanted, and that's what I took. I took my life back.
: ) Robin
29 year old Mommy of an amazing 1 year old and Wife for 2 years!
Dx-May 2007 Moderate/Severe Pancolitis - failed all medications
Proctocolectomy w/ permanent ileostomy on 02/06/09!!!
"Your mind is like a parachute, it only works when it is open." -Unknown