Post Nissen Experiences and Questions

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

ocean girl252
New Member


Date Joined Feb 2014
Total Posts : 8
   Posted 2/17/2014 8:34 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi! Glad to find this forum. Before I decided to have the surgery I found many sites with horror stories and actually put the surgery off partly because of what I had read. This seems to be a place where people are reasonable and honest and questioning. A place where I can find answers and hopefully share experiences that will be helpful to others.

I am 11 days post Nissen. Hard to believe that 11 days have gone by! I lost the first two days, have no memory! Since then I feel that things have been going as well as expected. The first few days i had terrible pain in my neck, shoulder and across my back, but that has subsided. I only needed pain meds for the first few days. I have been very cautious on trying to eat anything but liquids for the first week. No trouble there. Now I have started to add soft foods: cottage cheese, mac and cheese, pureed butternut squash, canned peaches, etc. and that seems to be going well. I am finding that the attraction of something more like real food is very tempting and I have to be careful not to eat too much or too quickly. I am trying to adopt a Zen-like approach to eating! Little bites, chew carefully, swallow, wait, then another small bite.

The main problem I am having is gas, sometimes quite painful. Above the wrap gas. I am not sure what causes this. I haven't really looked around on the forum to see if others are having this problem. Any thoughts of this? I try to walk several times a day, although it has to be inside because of this weather here in the Northeast.Fortunately, I have a big house! i am not sure if this is helping or not.

Anyway thank you for the opportunity to join this forum. I am looking forward to more communication in the future.

Also having some trouble staying hydrated enough, hence a couple of bouts with constipation. Prune juice works pretty well and is less brutal than commercial laxitivesl

jery01
New Member


Date Joined Feb 2014
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 2/19/2014 2:32 AM (GMT -6)   
Gas is a very normal and painful after effect from the surgery. It tends to get trapped and the only way to get rid of it is to walk it off. The pain I know can be very bad and make youeven feel breathless. Are you able to burp well yet? Sorry to say but this will take time to get through, but eventually it will get better and better. You will probably always have gas a i do, but as long as you can let it out you will be fine. best fo luck and be patient. it has only been a few days.

ocean girl252
New Member


Date Joined Feb 2014
Total Posts : 8
   Posted 2/20/2014 11:49 AM (GMT -6)   
Thank you jery. I appreciate your encouragement. It has not been 2 weeks! The pain usually comes shortly after eating. I have found that if I walk immediately after eating for at least 30 minutes that things are better. But then I started to wonder...(I am a hypochondriac and was even before this surgery :)) Is what I am thinking of as gas really food getting stuck? To be honest I don't know what that would feel like> I have a sense that I would know if that were happening. Anybody have any thoughts on this? Thank you.

TonyG
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2013
Total Posts : 254
   Posted 2/20/2014 3:37 PM (GMT -6)   
For the first 4-5 weeks, if you don't chew your food well enough, food will feel like it gets stuck. The swelling around the wrap site will be at its greatest in this timeframe. You absolutely need to take small bites and chew everything until it's almost liquid. Drinking warm liquids will help your food go down.

Walking will definitely help. So will keeping hydrated. Gas is going to be your worst enemy. With your wrap as fresh as it is, and the swelling you've got going on inside, there is only one way for gas to get out. You'll feel bloated after you eat for a few months, unfortunately. I'm at just about a year post-surgery and I'm just barely starting to be able to burp once in awhile. Us folks with GERD tend to swallow lots of air when we eat. It's an involuntary process at this point so it will take some work to help get past it. As you chew, exhale through your nose before you swallow so that you get as much air out of your throat as possible. You're still bound to get bloated and gassy, so keep GasX or Gaviscon or something similar handy to help with that.

Every day gets a little better. Having the Nissen procedure was one of the best decisions I ever made, despite the recovery time...and I'd do it again and again. Anything to get rid of that awful reflux I was having!

Be well and take care,
-TonyG-
-TonyG-
Nissen Fundoplication April 30, 2013
Pain-Free, Reflux-Free, Sleeping on my back!

ocean girl252
New Member


Date Joined Feb 2014
Total Posts : 8
   Posted 2/20/2014 5:03 PM (GMT -6)   
Thank you Tony G!
I appreciate your encouragement.

( I incorrectly wrote that it was "not" two weeks in the above post. What I really meant was that it is "now" two weeks.) Because of my anxious nature I can tend to think that every little thing means that something is wrong. In reality, I think that things are going as well as can be expected. I am trying to be very cautious about what foods I eat and especially with chewing. I find that I have to concentrate totally on eating, or I will become distracted and start shoveling the food in! Well, maybe not quite like that, but unless I am totally focused I will eat too quickly and to chew as well as I should. I will try your suggestion exhaling through my nose before swallowing. It makes sense. I will also get some Gasx

I grappled with horrible reflux for 15 years before making the final decision for this surgery. And I believe it was the correct choice. I know this isn't a fast fix. It is encouraging to know that the surgery has worked well for you. I hope to be where you are in about a year!

Thank you again. Good to hear a rational, reasonable voice when I start winding myself up!

Best,
Ocean Girl 252

ocean girl252
New Member


Date Joined Feb 2014
Total Posts : 8
   Posted 2/28/2014 8:51 AM (GMT -6)   
I'm back again! Things have been going relatively smoothly with no real problems. A little more gas above the wrap than before but nothing serious. I am three weeks post wrap as of yesterday. Then, out of the blue this morning food is stuck in my throat, will not go down! Even with water, trying additional bites of food to get it to move, there is a sensation that this swallow was not complete. Not stuck at the wrap, but in my throat. I will admit I was not eating mindfully; was reading something at the same time I was eating (scrambled egg and sweet potato) and probably was "shoveling it in" rather than taking smaller bites and making sure things were swallowed properly. I know better than this! But I have never had a problem with scrambled egg. This was the first time I have tried sweet potato. Didn't seem like it should be a problem, but most likely the fact that I wasn't giving things a chance to be swallowed contributed to this. I am not sure what to do now. I am not choking or in any pain.

Prior to having the surgery my I had a motility study done, and my swallowing was not great. I had a long discussion with the surgeon and ultimately we decided to go for the full wrap with the understanding that it may have to be redone to a partial wrap. He said that by three weeks we should know if the full wrap was successful. Things have been going very well and I was encouraged to think that the full wrap was going to work. Actually, I don't think this has anything to do with the type of wrap, since the food seems to be stuck in my throat. Anybody have any thoughts on this? Thanks!

amo
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 70
   Posted 2/28/2014 11:21 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi, glad to here it is going well for you and you are over the biggest hump. I remember so well of the mindful eating after my first wrap. I had to totally concentrate on my eating. I also remember the gas! That is exactly what I did, walk after I ate and I also took gas x, ( I think before I ate). Well I am going in for a redo on March 13. I am nervous, he says he will try to do it laparoscopic but might have to cut me open if there is too much scar tissue.

Keep chewing!
amo
Mechelle,

asthma,GERD,Barrett's esophagus,chronic hip pain, depression,MCTD.

TonyG
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2013
Total Posts : 254
   Posted 2/28/2014 12:11 PM (GMT -6)   
I'm glad to hear things continue to go well for you! If something feels like it gets stuck, try sitting up as straight as you can and pushing your shoulders back into the chair. That helps open up your chest and loosen up the muscles around your esophagus, giving it room to expand. Keep working on warm liquids to help it down.
-TonyG-
Nissen Fundoplication April 30, 2013
Pain-Free, Reflux-Free, Sleeping on my back!

opnwhl4
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 4961
   Posted 2/28/2014 2:33 PM (GMT -6)   
ocean girl252

Potatoes are one of the most deceptive foods early on. they can pile up at the wrap very easily. They tend to stay in a bolus no matter how much you chew unless they are runny.
Tony's advice is great. Also remember to still take additional time between bites and try to feel it go through the wrap. It will take a little time, but you will learn fairly quickly when something is starting to hang up so you can stop eating and focus on relaxing and letting it go through.

This is very normal at your time in recovery.

Take care,
Bill
opnwhl4
Moderator: GERD/Heartburn, Kidney disease

Nissen 6/06 and 5/09
#3 8/24/11

ocean girl252
New Member


Date Joined Feb 2014
Total Posts : 8
   Posted 3/2/2014 11:23 AM (GMT -6)   
I want to thank Bill, TonyG and amo for taking the time to respond and for their comments and suggestions. It is very reassuring to have this forum. The day passed with no further problems and I have to conclude once again that this recovery is not a linear process! I have had two "normal" days since I posted with nothing unusual happening. I have decided to leave sweet potatoes alone for a while! I will be having my first post op check-up on Tuesday. I will let you know how it goes.

Amo, good luck with your redo. I hope it can be laproscopic!

opnwhl4
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 4961
   Posted 3/2/2014 11:58 AM (GMT -6)   
ocean girl252

It's good to hear things are calming down. It's hard to give up some foods for a while, I love sweet taters!

I found for mashed taters that if you alternate bites of them with something else and wait about 30 seconds or a bit longer between bites they go down much better.

Take care,
Bill
opnwhl4
Moderator: GERD/Heartburn, Kidney disease

Nissen 6/06 and 5/09
#3 8/24/11

ocean girl252
New Member


Date Joined Feb 2014
Total Posts : 8
   Posted 3/18/2014 5:29 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Again,

Now I am 5 1/2 weeks post NF. things are progressing reasonably well with the exception of a couple of things that have become slightly more consistent lately and a couple of things that I have questions about.

First of all, I am not sure if I really know what it feels like if something is stuck in or above the wrap. I know this sounds dumb, but how do you tell? I have a sense that I would know it if I felt it, but maybe not. I have for the last few days had intermittent stomach pain in the upper left part of my stomach, near where I assume part of the stomach was used for the wrap. A burning kind of pain like I used to have prior to the surgery. I haven't felt any reflux, but it makes me want to take Tums or something. This isn't constant pain, but it happens after eating sometimes, and mostly at night. I am wondering if I am trying to eat foods that I am not ready for yet? Too spicy? Or does this mean something is stuck? I am quite careful to chew and chew and chew and take small bites and eat slowly, and my diet is still pretty bland, but I have had spicier things that might be related.

Another thing that happens is in the mornings I often feel congested, like a eustachian tube is plugged for a time, and then this goes away. (Could be post-nasal drip related.) Also nose running a bit after eating. This happens not just in the morning and not all the time, but there is a sensation of my swallow backing up or something. Reflux above the wrap? I am confused about this.

Third thing--I occasionally have pain in my larynx. Almost like a spasm that is strong and painful but only for a few seconds, then it goes away. I have no trouble breathing, and can still swallow and talk, but it is weird. Sometimes this also occurs in my esophagus as well, but more often in my larynx.

All of this being said, most of the time I am feeling quite well. I just am not sure if these things are part of the normal healing process, or if I should be contacting my doctor. I was told to stop the omeprazole about 2 weeks ago.

I would really appreciate it if anyone can offer some insight into these things. I would like to hope they are all part of the healing process and will eventually pass, but I am just not quite sure.

Thanks for any insight.

ocean girl252

Sleepyb
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2014
Total Posts : 27
   Posted 3/19/2014 9:13 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Ocean Girl,

I wonder if the stomach pain around 5 weeks is just part of the recovery. It will be 5 weeks tomorrow and I am having similar symptoms.
As for something getting stuck, usually I'll get the hiccups when something gets stuck. Best way I've heard to describe it is a hairball feeling. Even when I don't feel anything, a drink of water will definitely make anything stuck noticeable, then I sit up straight or stretch and it all goes down. Because of that, I make sure to take a drink of water or tea with every couple bites and after eating I take a couple more swallows of water or tea to make sure everything washes down fine.

ocean girl252
New Member


Date Joined Feb 2014
Total Posts : 8
   Posted 4/3/2014 5:43 PM (GMT -6)   
Hello,

Sorry Sleepyb that it is now April and I have just now replied to your post. I hope you are doing well. The stomach pain that I had been feeling has basically subsided, so maybe it was just part of the healing process. How are things with you?

I am still having some issues with swallowing that include the feeling of hoarseness after eating. Not like something is stuck in the wrap, but that maybe something didn't quite go down and has backed up without going through the wrap? Also sometimes pain in my esophagus and throat that feels like a spasm--like something is being squeezed. Don't know if this is normal. Anyone else experienced this?

Again, other than that things seem to be going well.
New Topic Post Reply Printable Version
Forum Information
Currently it is Sunday, June 24, 2018 2:49 PM (GMT -6)
There are a total of 2,974,768 posts in 326,206 threads.
View Active Threads


Who's Online
This forum has 161300 registered members. Please welcome our newest member, sunvsmoon.
382 Guest(s), 5 Registered Member(s) are currently online.  Details
Sinmiedo, Girlie, OriolCarol, Subdenis, BOB 46