Trussed like a turkey


UPDATE- I did let my nurse know what's going on when she came out today. She advised me to contact the head of my home health care. They are contacting my doctor. They all think it's a gallstone but can't really say that without tests.

Right now waiting on doctor. Today the pain is in my back radiating around to the front. It's right where you put your hands on your hips.

I've had my stoma since the end of July 2022, so I'm fairly new to this. I'm still healing from a 13 hr surgery to remove cancer from within. Basically my abdomen looks like Frankenstein.

Prior to surgery I had gall bladder issues so I lived on a low fat diet to try and keep it from flaring. When it flares it feels like a metal belt tightening under my breasts, acid indigestion and heartburn.

Off and on since I've had the ostemy I've had the tightening, occasional heartburn and what I can only describe as being trussed up like a turkey. Imagine someone wrapping strings around your abdomen at different angles and pulling tight.

This has been going on for about four days now and I thought it was gas. I've had some gas in my bag, some output. I'm never sure what is normal output. Usually it quits in the night but not last night.

I can't even sit up without feeling like a string is trying to cut me in half. My stomach is rumbling right now, and I'm trying to drink peppermint tea.

Is it gas or slight blockage?


Well, I'm not sure how to describe what my partial blockage felt like except it hurt like a MOFO, especially when I tried to bend over. Hardly any issue/pain when I'd lay down. I was literally trying to get my shoes on to go to the ER for it but decided to lay down for awhile instead. I decided to go to work, which gets me up and moving, and if it didn't get better, I'd go after work. The dam broke free while at work and literally the pain was gone in a couple of minutes. I went home and later that day everything that was being held back came out. I haven't had an ounce of pain since. I'm not gonna tell you what I had is what you have, but a partial blockage does hurt like nothing else I've ever felt.


if your ostomy is functioning is it possible your gallbladder is the issue? I had ridiculous pain when my gallbladder duct got blocked by a stone.

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I have never had a blockage so I am no help but I have read on here to drink pure grape juice to move things along. Even if it's not a blockage I doubt grape juice can cause any harm(?). Hope your issues are easily and quickly resolved.

I keep it on hand "just in case"



You ask the question 'Is it gas or a blockage?' 

My reply would be that whilst these are possibilities, you should not rule out other possible things and get it checked out asap.

The sensation you describe is very similar to the feelings I still have after a triple heart bypass., where I was cut open right down the middle. That strangulation/restriction feeling is apparently quite 'normal' with scar tissue.  Whatever it is, it would be quite reassuring to know for sure, so that you might know what to do about it. 

Best wishes


How to Manage Ostomy Leaks with LeeAnne Hayden | Hollister
Reply to Bill

I agree with Bill. I think many of us, myself included, tend to blame our ostomies, when any pain or discomfort happens anywhere near our abdomens. There are lots of things it could be, so I wouldn't let it go on much longer without getting it checked out. I have had somewhat similar symptoms from gas, so it could be that. Gas can be extremely painful, and as soon as it gets out, the pain disappears. What I do, is drink a cup of liquid, then lie down and try to relax. Apply pressure with your fingers, all around your stoma. This works really well for me and if it is pain, should relieve it in a matter of minutes. Let us know how things work out for you.


Reply to AlexT

Thank you so much for sharing that and giving me an idea of what it's like.

Reply to Anonymous

I think it's possible. I honestly do not know because I do have the desire to pass gas out my bum. Usually when I have that it's gas, and I have the gel stuff happen out my bottom. But nope,I've had that desire for a couple days now and nothing has happened. I also have a catheter currently that's been painful for about a month now. Chemo has me take miralax every day. I took a double dose today. Off and on I have had a tiny bit of gas in the ostemy, some nausea, pressure under it. And I have had a small stool. I haven't had solid foods today.

Reply to Justbreathe

Why 100 grape juice?

Reply to Bill

I still have home health care 3x a week due to a stitch getting massively infected when I was still in the hospital. When I first got those trussed up feelings, the nurse I had at the time kept telling me that was part of healing process, scar tissue and nerves knitting back together. I just haven't had it these many days in a row, or without gas at the same time. Typically, gas makes the wound hurt more than the ostomy, although sometimes it feels like the ostomy is trying to rip off my skin.

Reply to delgrl525

Thank you so much. I've been laying down and I have had some warm tea, some warm peppermint, two doses of miralax. At the moment it's eased some on the right side. My ostomy is on the left. But right in the middle less than an inch from my ostomy is my wound and it tends to mess with the ostomy. I do have another question for everyone, but I'll post it separate, but I do typically have a spot on the right of my ostomy that always feels like ripping skin. When I was given the ostomy, my doctor made it bigger and then stitched a section back together. When I first was learning how to change my bag, on my left side was a section attached to my stoma that stitches. At first, I would have to cut a piece of Aquasol and place it over those stitches, then place the wax seal and wafer.

I was told by the ostomy nurse that trained me that she didn't know why he did that or made it oval. It was also more concave and didn't protrude at first and that bothered her. She made this point of telling me the reason I have the wax seal and the wafer is because it was more concave or flat. The other day at chemo there was a lady next to me that had an ostomy, and her skin was broken down and inflamed underneath. She was telling the nurse and they took it off so the nurse could look. Her stoma was like mine was in the beginning and they were just attaching a wafer to her skin. Maybe that is normal, but the nurse called up Wound care and got her some powder and skin prep.

If you look at my stoma, you can see where one blow out did rip open that extra area. It actually happened after the doctor took the stitches out of that section instead of letting them melt. And you can see two other areas where it's ripped the skin. Between an ostomy that typically feels like its ripping me a little, and the wound and all the healing it's really hard to tell what is what. I just do not want to go to the hospital. You would think after 3 surgeries I would be a pro, but lately I seem to have a fear of the hospital.

Reply to gairdinspreagtha

I first read to drink grape juice, on this site, for blockage. Shopping around for grape juice there are many kinds so I opted to go with 100 - seemed all natural would be the best choice. Again, I have not experienced a blockage like most describe here - I just keep it on hand - never researched it - but I assumed ( you know what they say about assume) 100 juice must be healthier than those having all sorts of ingredients that I cannot even pronounce.

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