Concerns about blockage after end ileostomy reversal?


Got a question about blockage! 8 years ago, I had an ileostomy! At the present, I have a colostomy and can eat anything without fear of blockage! In 2 weeks, I'm going back to an end ileostomy! After the stoma heals, why do you have to watch for blockage? In my first ileostomy, I must not have had an end ileostomy as I had several ER blockages! I should be able to eat anything! Right?


Hi Hermit, there are a couple of things to keep in mind here. One, the more surgeries one has, the more likely you are to develop scar tissue, which can cause blockages. Secondly, you always have to allow time for healing before just resuming normal habits, as the tissue is swollen from the trauma of the surgery and needs time to heal. You could get a blockage for just that reason. I have a loop ileo and can eat anything as long as I chew really, really well and keep really, really hydrated. Notice the emphasis on the really?! But, take it slow at first. This ileo may or may not act like the one you had previously, whether it's a loop or an end. Good luck!


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Reply to TerryLT

Thanks Terry for the reply! The surgeon said he would make sure I wouldn't get a blockage! I forgot about the scar tissue from the first ileostomy that may cause an issue! I am going to have a lot of dental work done so I can really chew my food! Hate losing my colostomy! See ya!

Reply to Hermit

Hi Hermit, when I just had my life-changing situation, I ate everything until I ended up in the ER. I could not walk or move. The doctor gave me some stool softener. After that, I realized that every time I eat anything like bread, pasta, etc., I always have on hand pitted prunes. They are a good source of fiber that can help. It's always good for me to eat one or two pitted prunes with my meals, especially if it contains anything with flour, bread, pasta, rice, etc., along with vegetables. I just try to balance the intake. Enjoy your meals!

Reply to Tense62

Hello, thanks for the response! We both started with the same issue! Never heard of the pronghorn fox! I will remember! Thanks

Words of Encouragement from Ostomy Advocates I Hollister

Hi hermit

I've never had a blockage, but a friend of mine has them sort of annually, she and my own surgeon told me they are predominantly caused by adhesions, where the underside of any incision adheres to the intestine and can restrict the intestines' free movement in the abdominal cavity causing the blockage. This subject came up with the surgeon because he commented that I don't have any adhesions after six ops, which he said was uncommon. I eat everything they told me not to when being discharged from the hospital without any issues, but as you will know doctors will give you a list of any known risks related to your procedure no matter how unlikely they really are. However, chewing your food properly is always a good strategy.


Yep, you should. I had my loop made permanent and had occasional blockages. The stoma was later recreated into an end version and I have had no problems since.

Reply to Axl

Thanks for the reply! I will ask the surgeon what he said about making sure there are no restrictions! At one time, I had a loop!

Reply to dmccrillis

Thanks for the reply! I'm about to get a permanent end ileostomy! I had some restrictions with the loop! I always go to these sites for info! My primary sent me to a doctor for a colonoscopy a while back! It was funny! He had never seen a stoma and wouldn't do it!


I have a colostomy. After surgery, I was told there were no food restrictions but to still follow a healthy diet. 11 months post-surgery, I had the worst pain ever. Landed in the ER, severely dehydrated with 2 blockages and they thought I would need emergency surgery. Scary and painful. I think my diet was the perfect storm as I had started to eat more raw fruits and veggies, I love popcorn, and introduced wheat grain bread instead of white. There was a bend in the intestines from the surgery and the bulky diet didn't help. I was on an NG tube 7 days, the blockage resolved itself and the Dr. told me to follow a low residue diet...completely opposite of what I was doing that I thought was healthy. Cook foods to soft, pasta, potatoes, white bread, fruit no skin but soft or processed down like applesauce, meats soft with gravy and limit fiber. Mind blown...that seems opposite of healthier options but there is a balance. Of course, stay hydrated and to have several small meals to keep things moving. Now, I am more aware of output and type. If things seem slow or I feel queasy, I increase water and movement, massage my stomach and slow up on eating anything heavy. I learned my lesson! I say all of that to say, check with your Dr about your concerns. That was my path but even having a colostomy, we are all different. Good luck with it all.


Been lucky with my colostomy until recently! Have several large polyps about to cause blockage! Good luck!


Hi Hermit,

A lot of good information in the replies to your post. I've had a couple of blockages that resulted in hospitalizations. I had an end ileostomy in 2010. Eight months later was my first blockage experience. I don't remember eating anything particular to cause the blockage, but I do remember doing some core exercises (crunches, twists, leg lifts, ...) shortly before. Once I felt like something was wrong (abdominal pain, no output), I thought drinking more liquids would help get things flowing again. I later found out, at least in my case, that was the wrong move. Once I started getting nauseous vomiting, went to the hospital and got IVs to get hydrated. Luckily with rest, the blockage resolved in a couple days. Nothing of consequence since that time until last year, when hospitalized again. This time in addition to getting IVs also ended up with an NG tube. They were considering surgery, but with any surgery leads to increased chance of further adhesions forming. So kind of a Catch 22. Anyway resolved after 10 days - did a lot of walking around the hospital floors as doctors were encouraging movement to get things flowing again. Not sure what caused it this time but I was eating peanuts after exercising so I'm guessing the roughage with being a bit hydrated was the likely culprit. As for diet, I don't restrict myself much, but try to do things in moderation - mix of some roughage but leaning more to low residue foods as mentioned by Purple Princess. And as delgrl525 mentioned chew, chew, chew hydrate!

Reply to Active1

Thanks for the reply! Sounds like you have been through a lot! Wished I could walk miles like I used to! Spinal stenosis, can't walk 100 feet without sitting! Regret having surgery for it!

Reply to Active1

I am hoping I don't get blockages this time! Sure liked my colostomy! Thanks for the response and chew chew! Good luck!