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Almost A YEAR Post-OP

Hi everyone, I’m Brad I’ve been around the site for awhile, just not as frequently here lately.

I was diagnosed with UC when I was 18 back in 2004 after 6 years of trying all the usual routes I was tired of it all and decided it was time for surgery.

I went to the Alabama Colon & Rectal Institute and saw Dr. Parker who is a great dr. I had 2 other consults with surgeons during my bout with colitis and they seemed to “push” surgery on me. Anyway in October I went in for step 1 of a 2 part surgery and everything went very well sometime on day 2 post op my new ostomy began working all was pretty good got home on day 7. Around day 10 or so i began vomiting ostomy output was nearly nonexistant. Back to the hospital for another 8 days, a NG tube for 2 of those not fun, to see if it was infection. Turned out my abdomen was just too strong and cut off flow from the last inch of intestine to the bag so after they figured out wha t it was back to the o.r. for a 15m surgery to slightly enlarge the hole in my abdomen. A few days before my final surgery on Dec. 2nd I went in for a scope just to see if the pouch had healed up correctly, it had.

On Dec. 2nd I had my final surgery, takedown.

All went well.

I have to say waking up after the final surgery was the most painful part of the whole ordeal, where the stoma was on my abdomen hurt. The nurse hooked up my morphine pump I hit it, nothing, still in a world of hurt. Called the nurse over told him, he gave me a dose of morphine I dont know how much it was but I felt my toes and fingers go numb and got lightheaded still no relief of the pain in my abdomen. It took about an hour before the pain subsided. 6 days later I got to go home woulda been 7 but I had a final exam due so he let me go a day early. Sometime on the 3rd day I started passing stool. For about a day I coulndt tell at all when I was going to have to go to the bathroom and had no control, ea ch day it got better and by the time I got to go home I had complete control (while awake anyway).

21 days in the hospital 6 weeks with an ostomy bag and now I couldnt be happier. Everything is great I havent found anything so far that I’ve had problems doing. Every now and then I’ll have some leakage while sleeping if I drink too much before bed particularly soda, I usually wake up. Maybe once in the past 2 months now that it’s happened. I do pretty much everything now that I did before colitis, drink beer, eat hot wings, the only thing that I have removed from my diet is mushrooms and popcorn. Popcorn cause I read somewhere it can cause blockages and mushrooms because last time I ate them I had partial blockage and those cause a lot of stomach pain.
Some of the questions I get a lot are how long can you hold it before you have to go, how big are your scars, and can you drink alcohol. I dont really know how long I can hold it before I absolutely am about to poop myself but the more you eat the more you go so I plan accordingly. The longest time that stands out to me is I went fishing with a friend we hit the lake at 10am fished all day and made it back home around 8pm and went before and after so as long as you dont eat a ton of food. I think I ate a ham sandwich a snickers and a bag of chips while on the lake. I’d say 10-12hrs if needed. My scars arent that bad. I had the surgery done laparascopically. I got about a 3 inch scar where the stoma was, 3 tiny 1/4in scars where the incisions for the camera and tools were made, and a 5in scar below my waist line that is almost invisible . As for alcohol I can drink as much as I like, I tend to stay away from beer in large quantities as more liquid in means more trips to t he bathroom. Nothing in particular has given me any problems. I do prefer shots tho as it is less liquid.
Surgery is a tough decision to make I hope what I’ve written may help some people. A question I see on forums all the time is “When is it time for surgery” in my opinion unless it is medically necessary and it is no longer a choice, there is no right time for surgery, when its time you’ll know. For me it was last September when I began seeing a lot of blood in my stool after 4-5 months of “getting better” I had been eating healthy not strictly SCD but close I had tried SCD quit then loosely followed some of its suggestions for awhile, was working out september 3rd I finished P90X had added 20lbs was feeling fantastic overall. I think around the 10th I started seeing blood again by early october I had lost 15lbs I was enraged by all of it instead of getting depressed like I usually did. Called set up an appmnt for the 7th 9th somewhere around there, had surgery on the 19th.

If anyone has any questions feel free to ask I’d be more than happy to answer them, I’ll add the facebook page and hit the wall up just find me on there and add me as a friend on fb. Brad W

Submitted by “Brad Powder” in the Colitis Venting Area

 




colon, surgery

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