Reversal Surgery and Hernia Repair: Seeking Advice and Support

Apr 07, 2018 8:17 am

Hello to everyone. Last year, on Easter Sunday I got up early as usual as my golden retriever thought I should, so I came downstairs feeling sick and threw up in the downstairs sink. Strange, I thought, dodgy kebab meat from the night before. Still felt sick but after a coffee and my usual routine of taking my blood pressure, we went out. Feeling sick in my stomach, I walked and got about a mile from the house then apologized to Benson and told him I was feeling too sick to continue. On getting home, I decided to go back to bed, started having stomach cramps and thought it must be food poisoning from the kebab the night before. My wife awoke because I was in so much discomfort, she made me a ginger and chamomile tea. In the end, I got into the shower and was repeatedly sick. I was in there for so long Jane came upstairs to tell me off for running off the hot water. Still feeling sick, I went back to bed. We were meant to go visit a friend that day and her profession is as a nurse practitioner, so I thought we would be okay. I then developed very sharp nurse-type cramps across my belly where my belt would be and thought this is not normal. I asked Jane to call 111. A medic arrived followed by an ambulance that took me straight to A&E in Lincoln. By this time, I was in a lot of pain and after a very quick scan, they said that I had a punctured bowel. I had emergency surgery very early the next morning and they discovered I had the punctured bowel, peritonitis, a severely inflamed appendix, and two liters of infected liquid in my stomach cavity. The doctors performed a Hartmann's procedure, removing eight inches of bowel, my appendix, and giving me a stoma. I spent two days in ICU2 and nine days on the ward afterward. I found it very, very difficult to come to terms with the stoma. There were a lot of tears and some depression while at the same time being very thankful to the doctor and team that had prevented my death at that time.

Since then, I have gotten used to the stoma. I have developed a huge hernia that is like a large breast. I need a belt to keep my belly in place; it is uncomfortable without it. I have done a fair bit of manual work in the year which contributed to the hernia. When in ICU, one of the nurses said to me that I should now start thinking of when and where I could get my reversal. I have done a fair bit of education on the Internet and found this site and forum great for giving a personal view. At the six-month point, I asked for a referral to a Mr. Abercrombie who works at Nottingham. He saw me and offered a reversal with the hernia repair and explained the procedure, including the use of the bum gun to staple and the jacuzzi test to test for leaks. He explained that Lincoln was very capable of doing the surgery but he specialized in difficult cases and repairs. So, after speaking to Mr. Kahn in Lincoln, I opted to go for surgery in Nottingham.

Surgery is scheduled to take place on 3 May 2018 in Nottingham. I am very scared and am not looking forward to it at all. The last time after the emergency treatment, I had horrific dreams and hallucinations courtesy of the opium that I was given for the pain. Pain relief this time will be a worry. One thing that has settled my nerves a little is the many experiences on this forum and I thank those that have shared.

In the next few weeks, I want to lose a little weight and will cut out the wine to make myself the best I can be. I will be sad that I am not on the ward in Lincoln because the care on the ward was fantastic, so many lovely people. Nottingham has a lot to live up to, though I am sure the nurses there will be equally as lovely people. The NHS is really fantastic when push comes to shove for serious stuff.

Apr 11, 2018 8:43 pm


Feeling nervous and scared is normal, but to have trust in your surgeon and hospital should help. Take some time and check out the other threads about reversals and hopefully they will help. I am not a candidate for one so I do not know what it is like. At the same time, we all know that what you will be going through is not easy and can relate. I hope all goes well for you and that you don't worry too much before your date arrives.

Best wishes!

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Apr 15, 2018 9:37 pm

Thank you for taking the trouble to comment, I appreciate it. I am getting more agitated and have set tasks for myself to complete before my surgery, it's good in a way.

The one thing that is a concern is if there is anastomotic leakage post surgery and of course waking up with a stoma. The other thing is if I should go on a planned trip to Waterloo on 18 June, we will be staying in the chateau of Hougoumont which will be unbelievable, it will be six weeks post op but I'm not sure it's advisable. How will I feel just four weeks after release from hospital, I was a mess last time though the circumstances were quite different.

May 08, 2018 2:10 pm

All done and dusted, no more stoma.

May 13, 2018 5:32 pm

Just over a week post-op, I'm out of the hospital and at home. It all went fine, and although in quite some pain, it is manageable with morphine sulfate liquid. It takes the edge off it. I had a parastomal hernia sorted at the same time, and most of the pain is from there. The hole left is the size of a squashed or elliptical squash ball, measuring 5cm in depth, about 4-5cm horizontally, and 2cm perpendicularly. It is getting dressed and packed every day by the community nurses. Each day is better than the previous, and I'm getting through The Sopranos quite well.

Staying Hydrated with an Ostomy with LeeAnne Hayden | Hollister
May 17, 2018 1:32 am

Sounds like you are doing well, it's wonderful to hear such good news!