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Count down to reversal...

Past Member
Tue Apr 17, 2012 12:10 pm
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so i met my surgeon yesterday and  my next surgery date is June 21! but still have a loop ileostomy. 3rd surgery will be 2-3 months after that. That means sometimes in August/September, I will be stoma free! It is still a loooooong way but definitely coming sooner or later. I was hoping to have a summer without bag...
If there is any cancellation, he can move me up to May he said.
That's a news from me. Thank you for praying a good outcome with the meeting of the surgeon.

I do feel a relief. There is a end to this in the future.

Thank you Lord!
These are the top 5 issues ostomates face:

1. Dating and relationships
2. Concealing the pouch
3. Foods to eat and avoid
4. Losing or gaining weight
5. Pouch ballooning

Check out this video from MeetAnOstoMate.
Tue Apr 17, 2012 12:24 pm
Happy-

What wonderful news! Smile

I know this sounds like a long way off right now but you will be surprised at how the time will fly by....before you know it June 21 will be here and you will be well on your way to being bag free!

So, this first surgery is for the J- pouch, right?  Then healing time....then the loop ileostomy will be taken down permanently.  You must not have enough rectum left to serve as the reservoir? so that is the reason for the J pouch?  I had about 10 inches of rectum left so that was enough to do the "holding" job Wink....altho I still go about 12 times a day on average, things are starting to slow down.....I am definitely making progress!

I will mark my calendar for June 21 for you!  In the interim, try to get as healthy as you possibly can before phase one of reversal!  You will need all the strength and stamina you can muster up!  Smile  Yaaaay, yaaaaay, things are not so far away!

So "Happy" for you! Smile  Keep me posted!
Darla
Past Member
Tue Apr 17, 2012 12:41 pm
Hello Darla,

you are so quick!!
Before I know it? really? I really hope that is the case!!!!! It's only April and cold here in Toronto.
You are so sweet as always.
The surprise was that I have to wait for J pouch to heal 2-3 months! I remember reading somewhere 4-6 weeks. That's why I feel a bit down.... end of summer instead of beginning of the summer. There were a lot of plan what to do this summer with my daughters...

That's is correct. Surgeon said he is connecting J pouch to anus not rectum. I don't know why. I have a bit of rectum left, about 5-7 inches. When I was talking ti surgeon, it didn't occur as a question to me, you know so much emotion...

12 times, eh. As long as you are progressing with that number, it's a good sign! Little by little, day by day, week by week, month by month. A year later, completely different story, ha!

ps I like your new photo! I can see your face now!

I chose to be Happy,

Happy
Tue Apr 17, 2012 1:07 pm
Wow....still cold in Toronto.....we are having 80 degree days already!  When I went to Galveston, TX this weekend it was in the low 80's and I went for a long walk on the beach!  I felt so free.....like dancing and twirling after everything that has happened!  

Keep your eyes on the prize, dear friend.  Think about early autumn when you will be bag free and will have your first fall in a long time to play "bagless"; plus the winter holidays this year will be SO much better for you.....as for spring/summer this year, get out there and do anything you can with those sweet daughters!  Go get a sexy, one piece swimsuit and flaunt that skinny figure for the world! Wink  Heck, I have seen pictures of women on here with bikinis on who just let their bags hang out.....not for me, mind you, but I admire their boldness and spunk!  It's like they are giving the world and it's opinions the "finger!"  lol Wink

Pretty soon the worst will be over with the surgeries; and we will be comparing bathroom notes!  Trust me, it will be worth the wait.  I feel so much better and stronger now....more than I have in a VERY long time.  You will, too! Smile

Darla

PS:  Thank you for that sweet compliment on my new picture.  I was playing around on my webcam and that was a shot that actually came out decent! Wink
Fri Apr 20, 2012 12:21 pm
Hey there Darla:

We are moving right along here. The muscle relaxants seem to be working sporadically but I am sure he will have a lot of pain on and off for sometime yet.

Today he went off to bingo with a friend and was very excited to do so. Gonna win enough money to buy his mom a "fur coat". lol  I have a problem now with trying to keep him down to rest. He is only one month out from his surgery and has another 3 weeks before we go back to see the surgeon. I

Thank you for your words on the memory issue. I have been worried about that but to find out others have had the same issues is comforting to me to know we will progress. You sound like you are really making great strides.

You absolutely better check in with me in a friend capacity as I feel that without you, I would not be as far along as I am now. Wish I had the resources to visit Texas as I sure would have loved to meet you. Your words over time serve to heal us all here and you are so witty with your wording that I have to smile and laugh which is so good for me. Once again, you SO ROCK!

Sending prayers and wishes for the safe arrival of your new grandbaby in July.

Warmest wishes and regards always.

Dianne
Sat Apr 21, 2012 5:34 pm
Great news Biddydi! I'm delighted your son is making such rapid progress. Its always good to read such a positive outcome. Here's hoping he continues like this!


And hi there Darla, Wow you are one heck of an advertiser for reversals!!   Your whole positive outlook is infectious and is a great addition to this site!! Here's hoping your visits decrease as the days go by. I've not had computer access for a few weeks now but am still checking in via my phone. Thankfully my own progress has been great and wounds have all healed up nicely. I saw my surgeon a few weeks ago and he seemed very happy with my progress too. He wants to see me for a colonoscopy though in June just to check on any polyp growth. But all goes well otherwise...........I'm back to my old bathroom routine once again. I'm even back to the farm once more and getting stuck in to the whole Spring thing. I'm just taking it as it comes and trying not to let myself get taken away with all the rush. I'm delighted too to hear of your road trip and hope it won't be too long before we hear you back to one or two visits a day. So take good care my good friend, Colm
Past Member
Sun Apr 22, 2012 10:06 am
Hi all!  Sorry I don't write, but I don't talk much and I've been really depressed.  The surgeon hasn't been working for me because he is not in my insurance network.  Turns out my insurance is only paying him about $65,000, instead of $100,000......he spent an hour on me.  So I went to see another surgeon this last Thursday, and now I'm scheduled for my reversal this Wednesday!!!  Holy crap!

But I have a question.  He doesn't want any prep from me except no eating after midnight the night before.  Mornings are my busiest as far as pooping in my bag.  Has anyone ever heard of intestinal surgery with no prep/flushing?  Now I'm getting a bit worried.  Don't we always flush before surgery?  

PS.  Glad to read about successes on this board, even small ones.

Ken
Sun Apr 22, 2012 2:11 pm
Thats all the prep I had to do exept I had to quit eating 12 hours before and no fluids 6 hours before when I went in for surgery I asked him and he told me that my bowels would start working faster if i wasn't completly emptey form more fasting
Past Member
Sun Apr 22, 2012 2:19 pm
Thanks Steve!  I was thinking that was probably the reason.  I'll probably wake up on a bedpan!
Sun Apr 22, 2012 7:16 pm
Ken - I had to go on a clear liquid diet the day before surgery.....a full 24 hours beforehand.....and then NPO after midnight the night before.....but, other than this, no real "prep" in the way of enemas or anything.  I am sure they gave me an enema thru the stoma once I was "out" the next morning and before the reversal procedure; but hey, at least I was already out and didn't get to experience the "pleasure" firsthand! Wink

Wow, you went from zero to 100 pretty quickly; insofar as your reversal plans are concerned!  Just be certain that the surgeon who has suggested this is a doctor that you ultimately trust with your life....not just someone who wants the money, if you know what I mean.  If you are satisfied that he/she has your best interests at heart and not just their wallet; then I wish you much success in your upcoming reversal adventure and will keep you in my thoughts and prayers this week and throughout your recovery process.  Please keep us all posted on your progress. Smile

Blessings!

Darla
Past Member
Sun Apr 22, 2012 8:24 pm
Thanks Darla!  This guy was referred by my primary care doc who is a highly respected pulmonary doc.  I'm scheduled at a brand new hospital that just opened it's doors in February, it's like walking into a resort.  And supposedly, they only want the best.  So yes, I trust this guy, I've been kicking myself for not contacting him sooner, I'd be done by now.

It has helped a lot ready the posts here while I've been waiting for my turn.  I'm getting anxious now.  Can't wait for that valium they give before the procedure!
Sun Apr 22, 2012 9:57 pm
Valium....lol Wink

Don't forget the baby wipes and Calmoseptine or Sudocreme and perhaps sneaking in an extra soft roll of TP.....hospital grade is usually equal to about a #10 grit!

I am happy that you have found someone you can trust and that everything is just around the corner!  Take very good care of yourself and let others help you, too along this journey.  Smile

Darla
Mon Apr 23, 2012 8:07 pm
Well my friends, the time has come. Tomorrow marks 11 months to the day that I took sick and had my emergency ileostomy. It also marks my first day back to work.
In some ways it seems so much shorter than that, but I can also remember the times when I wondered if the day would ever get here that I felt well enough to go back to work. My initial surgery and the resulting induced coma that I was in for over a week left me with some paralysis and nerve damage to my extremities. I am still working through some of that with my neurologist. The progress is slow, but it's still progress.
I had a reversal in February and I have progressed far better than I had honestly thought I would. My stoma wound has closed now and my final visit with my surgeon happened just a few days ago. We shook hands, parted ways and I thanked him for saving my life.
My bowel (the half that I still have, anyway) is still learning how to work again and slowly returning to normal. Some days theres nothing, some days I live in the bathroom. Thankfully those days are getting to be fewer and farther between.
I would just like to take this chance to thank Darla (aka bag_n_drag) for all her wonderful support, kind words, advice and friendship. I know I dont have to explain to anyone here how the bad days feel, and I've had my share. Every time, she has talked me down of my ledge. Thank you, my friend. We are all blessed for having you here.
To anyone being offered the chance to have a reversal, and are wondering if its worth it..all I can tell you is that in my case it was. Don't get me wrong, the bag saved my life, for which I will always be grateful, but I am also thankful for the chance to have some of the old me back together. I will still be around now and then to offer my two cents, and contibute where I can in the hopes of repaying what I feel I owe to the people here, but probably not as active as I have been in the past. By all means, if anyone has any questions though, fire away...I'm always glad to help.
Tomorrow starts a new chapter in my life. So many things have happened in my personal life in the last year, that I could start my own website just to explain how I feel about all that!! I won't burden you all with my tales, as we all have our own struggles, but a time has come for me to face some other demons and begin the process of finding out if I really have what it takes to face the world again.
Thank you all for your support and best of luck to everyone.
Mon Apr 23, 2012 8:19 pm
                                 
Dave_Canada wrote:
but a time has come for me to face some other demons and begin the process of finding out if I really have what it takes to face the world again.
Thank you all for your support and best of luck to everyone.


These are not demons, Dave; they're really angels taking you beyond your imagination. Make it happen.    PB
Mon Apr 23, 2012 9:44 pm
                                 
Primeboy wrote:


These are not demons, Dave; they're really angels taking you beyond your imagination. Make it happen.    PB


Beautifully stated, PB.  And we KNOW you can! Smile
Past Member
Tue Apr 24, 2012 2:01 pm
Best of luck to you Dave!  Thanks for sharing your journey.  I have to report to the hospital at 6:15AM tomorrow (4-25-2012) for my surgery.  I'm anxious to get it over with, but I'm sure not looking forward to getting the crap beat out of me (pun intended).  Better than the alternative.  I'll check back in when I get home, I won't have my computer there.
Tue Apr 24, 2012 6:55 pm
                                 
BluHarley wrote:
Best of luck to you Dave!  Thanks for sharing your journey.  I have to report to the hospital at 6:15AM tomorrow (4-25-2012) for my surgery.  I'm anxious to get it over with, but I'm sure not looking forward to getting the crap beat out of me (pun intended).  Better than the alternative.  I'll check back in when I get home, I won't have my computer there.


Best of luck for you tomorrow, Ken.  We will be thinking of you and lifting you up in our thoughts and prayers. Smile

Darla
Wed Apr 25, 2012 7:42 am
Sorry BluHarley, I know I've missed you know and you are probably being filleted as I type this, but I still wanted to wish you luck.
We will all be looking forward to hearing from you once you return home. My stay in the hospital was just over a week last time, so here's hoping you fair just as well.

Just rememberm, you will be sore..dont be a hero, and do what the doctors tell you.!

Thoughts and prayers!
Wed Apr 25, 2012 8:55 am
Hello everyone. I haven't been on in awhile.  Just got back from visiting my elderly parents who are not doing too well.  But it was my frist trip out of town and it went great, so I am encouraged.  Wanted to tell Ken that I too am thinking of him today and praying that his surgery and recovery will go well. It is quite an ordeal, but doable. I have so appreciated all the support I have been given over the past few months.
Darla - I have been following your trips to the loo. In comparison, I am kind of on the same path as you - 8-12 per day. However mine are not loose but they are usually small. I do still have some urgency so I have to know where the bathrooms are when I am out. I had most of my sigmoid removed so my holding area is gone.  I was encouraged to read some of the posts that said the body most likely will adapt.  Patience isn't my strong suit, but now I am hopeful.
Ya'll can call me Patsy!
Past Member
Wed May 02, 2012 4:34 pm
Hi everyone, I'm home!  Dave said it, sore!!  It all went pretty well I guess.  After eating too much the first time, I threw up, and one of the surgeons wanted suck out my stomach, but thankfully the senior surgeon was around and stopped that.  The surgeon said I could leave tomorrow, but my primary gave me another day.  I'm up and down out of the chair constantly, sore!  The first time on the toilet was impressive, the nurse and I were amazed at this nice little stool, since then it's been mostly mucus and little berries.  I make a trip to the toilet about every 2 hours whether I need to or not, I'm usually sitting on some mucus, and just relieving that little pressure helps.  Can't wait til everything gets back to working. I had to go pick up prescriptions and milk at the store, what did you say about not being a hero Dave?  Thank you all for being here, you helped me through a very difficult time.
Wed May 02, 2012 9:20 pm
Hi, Ken!

Glad to see you are back amongst the living! Smile

So everything is working again, yes?  It is really weird to "go" again after having the bag for a while....in my case it was 14 months.....I'm pretty much back to my "new normal" self now....it's been 3 months today since my reversal surgery and I am at about 8-12 bm's per day; which isn't ideal but it sure beats the heck out of the 18-20 times I was going per day the first couple of weeks post-surgery!

Please take it easy and as Dave said, do not over-doo Wink or you will pay the price later!  Keep us posted on your progress.  

Blessings!
Darla
Wed May 02, 2012 11:11 pm
That's great to hear! Welcome home! I know only from my experience, but the BMs will slow down after awhile, become more regular and less...um..urgent. As my surgeon put it, parts of your body have been asleep for some time. They will wake up and re learn their function as best they can with what you have left. I was fortunate enough to retain the lower 50% of my bowel so I am almost back to  my normal. Normal for me for the last ten years has been somewhat irregular anyway due to losing my gall bladder.
It's going to take a few weeks until you really start to feel like your old self again, not just from the reversal, but the trauma of being gutted like a tuna.
My advice remains the same. Go slowly. Don't lift anything heavier than the tv remote for weeks, even if you think you can. If you are like me and have been cut open twice, you are especially prone to hernias for months after, regardless of how good you feel.
The pains of your guts returning to normal will subside. I can recall having all sorts of twinges and tweaks for weeks afterwards, each time wondering if I was having problems. It will subside. If it doesn't, or you notice anything abnormal such as blood, see your doctor.
Watch for thin, pencil diameter stools and pain on a repeated basis.. If your stool is constanly this big around or accompanied by pain, it could mean adhesions.
On a brighter note, I am back to work now, part days at least, increasining gradually up to full eight hour days over the next two months. My coworkers and immediate boss have been nothing but supportive and caring.
Personally, it's taking a little longer for me to come around mentally. I am back to living at my own place in city with no family and few friends. My off time is lonely, but I thank God every day that I am alive and was able to see my 45th birthday just a few days ago.

Keep us posted on your progress and again, welcome home.
Past Member
Thu May 03, 2012 12:35 pm
Thanks Dave and Darla.  I had little sleep, and 2 accidents.  I'm having a hard time with the mucus.  I got up twice and went to the kitchen, and failed to stop at the bathroom.  This mucus just ejects and soaks my underwear.  Did you guys have this?  One thing I'm learning is to go to the bathroom no matter the reason for me getting up!  That's pretty much all I'm doing, no stools, just mucus and little control over that.
Thu May 03, 2012 1:44 pm
I had Mucus for the first 3 days after we finaly cleared the barium blockage I cured that by sneaking down to the hospital cafiterea and eating two ban muffins
Thu May 03, 2012 1:48 pm
                                 
Yukon steve wrote:
I had Mucus for the first 3 days after we finaly cleared the barium blockage I cured that by sneaking down to the hospital cafiterea and eating two ban muffins


lol Wink  you nut.  I always knew you were a rebel!

If I ate bran I would be in trouble indeed..... Wink
Thu May 03, 2012 3:22 pm
Great news!!! So glad everyone is doing well.  Best to you all!! Smile
Thu May 03, 2012 3:25 pm
                                 
fable3 wrote:
Great news!!! So glad everyone is doing well.  Best to you all!! Smile


Fable-

How are the twins cookin'?  Everyone ok?

Darla
Thu May 03, 2012 3:33 pm
When I saw the post how are the twins cooking I thought you ment my two moose
Thu May 03, 2012 7:40 pm
                                 
BluHarley wrote:
Thanks Dave and Darla.  I had little sleep, and 2 accidents.  I'm having a hard time with the mucus.  I got up twice and went to the kitchen, and failed to stop at the bathroom.  This mucus just ejects and soaks my underwear.  Did you guys have this?  One thing I'm learning is to go to the bathroom no matter the reason for me getting up!  That's pretty much all I'm doing, no stools, just mucus and little control over that.


Hi BluHarley,
Sorry, I can't help you on this one. I was fortunate that I didn't have any accidents, and any time any urgency came on I was almost always within seconds of a bathroom. I never had the problem of mucus or it just ejecting without warning.
When I say that my bowel has settled down, it's a bit of a mystery to me. I will have periods of no movement for as much as 48 hrs, then have day like today when I have been 4 times in 4 hours..very firm, then lots of watery. It's as if my body stores it for days, then just decided to do a clean out all at once.
My surgeon recommended imodium with my meals, but not nearly the same dosage as when I had the ostomy. He warns that too much imodium can take things the other way and cause constipation or worse. He also recommended a stool softener. I was taking those regulary but found they were acting more like a laxative and giving me the runs almost every day..it's a balancing act.
I dont want to bust your balloon, since you are on such a high having gone through your reversal and being home, but I will remind you again that it's all still fresh and new and  your body needs time to adjust and learn again. I think Darla will back me up on this, that even from her own experience, having even less bowel remaining than I do, that the frequency of movements will decrease over time. In the meantime have you considered an adult diaper?  I wore them for a good two weeks after being released, just in case. It gives you a little piece of mind, especially if you venture out.
If you are able, walk, walk, walk. It helps you feel better, a little more human and I believe helps you heal.

Just my two cents. Take it while you can. The Canadian government is going to stop making pennies this year, so my free advice is going up to 5 cents soon Smile
Thu May 03, 2012 9:26 pm
Yeppers, Ken.  I will back Dave up....in the beginning, it's hard on everybody, even if you have most of your large intestine left.  I had problems with mucus in the beginning, too, but I have no large intestine left so I have no filter anymore....just about 10 inches of rectum that my small intestine is now attached to.  I still have some issues with it at times....not as much in the beginning, tho, plus I take Metamucil pills every day to help absorb some of the stuff that the large intestine would normally bulk up and take care of.

Your body is different now than it used to be....even tho everything is connected back up; things will always be slightly different than they were in "the good ole days."  It is very important that you take VERY good care of yourself now, in these beginning phases of healing to minimize any long term or permanent complications.  There ARE worse things than having a bag......

If you go too many more days with mucus and not much else, I would definitely contact your surgeon as you may have a partial blockage.  One of our lovely ladies on this site, Fable, had a partial blockage while she was in the hospital right after her reversal and had to have it corrected before she could function normally again.  So an initial reversal is not always a guarantee of instant success in the bm dept.  Listen carefully to what your body is telling you and proceed with caution....we want you around for a long, long time! Smile

Thanks for listening to us......we're not trying to be preachy or debbie downers (or darlas or daves); we just care and want you to have every success for your reversal that we've had.  We've all been very blessed.

Take Care-
Darla
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