What to Expect with Barbie Butt Surgery?


I just nearly had myself a heart attack trying to figure out what to expect with a Barbie butt surgery....some blogs had people in the hospital for weeks with blockages and drains and tubes and feeding via a tube. Nightmare stories!

I had my cancerous colon removed in Sept. And the upper part of my rectum (and my appendix because apparently cancer wasn't enough of an issue). I'm set for a soon-to-be surgery, a month or two from now, to remove the remaining 8 or so cm of rectum and some surrounding tissue (lymph nodes) aka Barbie butt. And I'm scared.

How long is the hospital recovery? Will I get feeding tubes and drains and stuff? How is the recovery of Barbie butt compared to entire colon removal? I know it will hurt to sit, so I'm not sure how a 2 1/2-hour drive home will happen without major pain. How do you know you are recovering versus infection and other complications?


I had the full surgery to remove my large intestine all the way down as one full surgery. I was in the hospital for a full week before my first time I was released but went back for a blockage, but that was because my small intestine was still inflamed from the original surgery and was pushing output through an opening the size of a straw. The drive home, I was lucky to be the passenger, and I was sitting on my tailbone, not my rear. 1-hour drive back. You should not drive for a few weeks to heal correctly. I watched a lot of TV and did not sit upright for a few weeks, and after a period of time, I started to drive, but the bumps do feel uncomfortable. The main issue I had was the stitches were like 50 lbs nylon fishing line, and the knots were poking the inside area and felt like a hemorrhoid inflamed. When I went for a follow-up, they cut the knot to shorten it up and instant relief. There was a drain tube after the surgery for drainage, but it was smaller than a tennis ball, not the football drain bags a lot of people had to deal with. The worst pain was the removal of the stitches because the skin grew too close to the stitches, which left limited access to get to cutting them. Gemd, you have traveled a long road with the number of surgeries you have had. Stay strong.


Hi. I was diagnosed with rectal cancer in 2017. I endured 30 rounds of radiation and oral chemo pills. I shrunk everything but weakened the sphincter muscle in my rectum, and the cancer reared its ugly head again in 2018, almost 1 year to the day. My only alternative was surgery to remove the rectum, sphincter muscle, and lymph nodes. Barbie Butt. I was in the hospital for 7 days. My bum, yes, was sore, so I spent a lot of time on my side or laying down. I did not have feeding tubes. I did have drainage in my stomach, but nothing in my bottom, just stitches. Yes, I was scared, but it was not as bad as I expected. This surgery was in October 2018. I am doing everything that I normally do. It took about 6 weeks for my bum to feel somewhat normal. The skin sometimes gets tight, but I put some cream on it and on with my day. If you wish to ask any more questions about my surgery, please do so. Try not to fret and stay positive.

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I'm the lucky one who had no major problems. I was off the painkillers on day 3. I was in the hospital for two weeks and got home extremely weak. That lasted a couple of days and then I started to get up, move around, and walk more. I had discomfort after the surgery and did alternate laying on my side. We are all scared, even if we put a brave front up. Think positive and talk to the doctors honestly. You will get your life back and will live a new normal life that is good. Keep in touch here, the people on here care. We've been through it and understand.


Months ago, my surgeon said a 2-day hospital stay might be necessary. Maybe I heard wrong. No matter what, I have to wait for the EDG and CT scan and tumor markers to know more. But some of my rectum was already removed - the upper part, as in, I believe about half of my rectum. The upper half was already removed.

How to Manage Ostomy Leaks with LeeAnne Hayden | Hollister


I had my anus, rectum, and part of my large intestine removed due to rectal cancer a couple of years ago along with a colostomy... and Barbie butt. I got out of the hospital on the afternoon of the 4th day. No feeding tubes... I lived on ice chips for the first two days. On the third day, I was allowed to have coffee and if I remember correctly, some food that night. The next day, breakfast and discharge. They removed the surgical abdominal drain that day... which I'm not sure they should have, looking back. Because there was still fluid that needed to be drained and since there was no drain anymore, I drained fluid from the stitches on my bottom... for weeks. Sitting down was very uncomfortable for quite a while, and I wouldn't recommend a long drive right after your discharge. Sitting can be quite painful for a while afterward. Not as bad as I thought, though. You already have the colostomy, so you won't have to deal with recovering from that. To my mind, a two-day hospital stay sounds about right. You'll make it through. Stay STRONG!


I know the feeling. I had to have an ileostomy in Dec. I know that heart attack feeling. I had the best surgeon but even that did not make me feel better. I was in lots of pain for years before this. Cannot tell you I like wearing a bag but the dr did an amazing job and I had no pain (pain pills) since the surgery. Tampa General did not use feeding tubes or any of that other nasty stuff. So times have changed. You will learn, as I am still learning, that at least you have a life. If I did not do this, I would not be here. I cannot tell you not to be afraid, just try your best to look at the positive and ask your questions to the dr way before the surgery. Good luck.


Hang in there, it's not so bad. I had mine done right after Thanksgiving last year. Five days in the hospital, and returned to work without restrictions on January 2nd. The only reason I was kept in the hospital past the third day was that my bladder was retaining urine, which in time corrected itself. The pain wasn't nearly as bad as people made it out to be.


Hi Gemd, if you have a long ride home, find the softest pillow you can and don't hesitate to use pain pills.



Hate to hear you have to go through this. I had the surgery in April 2018. I was in the hospital for 7 days, but I had much more surgery done than just the Barbie butt. They used the muscle in my abdomen for the surgery, so there were stitches there. No problems. Just heal on their own. Of course, I had the Ostomy done then. I had to have my vaginal wall reconstructed because my tumor was growing in it. He took my appendix out while he was in there and removed the tumor margins and lymph nodes. I was up walking in just a day. It was not difficult to sit, but to move was so once you got seated, I was fine. It is a slow process getting in and out of the car, but no problems now. It does take a while for it to feel like a part of your body.


Don't be scared! I had my colon removed and ileostomy placed, and then 6 months later had the proctectomy (Barbie butt) surgery. The second surgery was like nothing compared to the first! I was scheduled to go home the day after surgery but ended up staying an extra night because I was dizzy (just seems to be the way my body processes the anesthesia). I was fine once I was allowed to eat and drink. I only took Tylenol for the pain and only needed it for less than a week. I tried to stay in a reclined position when I wasn't walking or laying down. My surgeon said sitting, especially in the first week, could delay healing. When I was able to sit, I made sure to bring a soft cushion with me everywhere. The derma bond that he used on top of the stitches bothered me more than anything else. Once the incision started to heal, the derma bond was sticking and irritating my skin. That was easily solved by letting warm water run over it in the shower. Just follow your surgeon's instructions, take it easy, and give yourself time to heal. You're going to be great!


I really had no pain except when getting into the car, but once in, I was comfy. The worst thing in the world is the stitches poking me. Of course, with the other surgeries done at the same time, I had quite a few. I did come home with two drainage bulbs and a Foley catheter. The Foley came out after one week, and the drainage ones after two. I hated them, but after having a lymph node removed in my groin, I had a drainage tube there, and the doctor took it out a little early, and I had a huge seroma that had to have another tube inserted for two more weeks! So be patient with them. It is tough! I started wearing dresses to be able to secure the bags under it! Worked real well!



I used a little trick for the drainage tubes. Instead of them collecting in a bulb, use a two-piece pouch over the drain, leaving some tubing to hang down in the pouch. You can drain and measure it like they want you to and will not have to deal with that bulb and won't have to empty it anywhere near as often! With a drain and bulb, you have to tape the tubing to you and put dressing around the incision, and with the pouch, you don't have to do that. The tape was tearing my skin up! Especially painful when trying to move and you get it hooked on something or shower and hold that stupid bulb! That would not work so well for a Foley because there is way too much urine, I think, maybe not! When I came back in for a check-up, my surgeon was amazed and took all kinds of pictures. Goes to show what we can do with our supplies!



Don't go mad, you've been through much worse. I had the full "barbie butt": nodes, rectum, anus, sphincter, several feet of large intestine, and a bit of colon. Like you with your appendix, I had a hernia that needed removing. The pain from the hernia was, by far, the worst. Ouch. Surgery was about three hours. I awoke without drains, just an underpad to collect residual fluids and my IV, which contained meds and super painkillers--my surgeon had me on a buffered morphine drip for the four days I was in the hospital. Good man. By not having me screaming in pain, I was able to rest and heal...I didn't even know I was on such drugs until I left. When you need them, you need them. I had no rectal leakage of mucus after leaving the hospital. I was walking the second day and in PT by day two. Then ten days in rehab. Again, if anything slowed my progress, it was my painful hernia, ouch ouch ouch...it hurts to think about it.

Your cute new butt will not be happy to sit for a bit--it's different with everyone. Besides sitting on pillows, I had several of those blow-up round 'doughnuts' that people use when they have hemorrhoid flare-ups. I used them for months. After I was ok'd to drive, I put one on my driver's seat. This made things much easier. Oh, and when you sit, do so slowly. No jumping up to get a snack, your butt will protest. Babying my bottom went on for months, but it was easy and kept the pain away while the rest of me healed.

So that's me. I don't know what all these drains, tubes, and leakages are all about. None of these things happened to me. With all your successful surgeries to date, they may not be needed this time. Let us know, I'll be praying for you. dls


I had my Barbie butt surgery on Dec 13th of last year. I had everything done in one 6-hour surgery. Sounds like you have already had the major surgery done, so the Barbie butt surgery should not be that bad. I was in the hospital for 3 days. Came home with one drain. Removed a week after. Pick yourself up a spinal injury memory foam pillow from Walmart. Works great. The first few weeks were pretty tender. Getting out of a chair was painful. Sit down slowly. Each week it got better. Six weeks out, the incision was almost healed but still some pain. Eight weeks out, all healed and very little pain. Still feel some tightness along the incision, but this is normal. Also, when I urinate, I sometimes feel the urge to poop, but I have read that this is also normal. I know I have been extremely lucky with my outcome judging from posts I have read from folks that have gone through the same surgery. Try not to worry too much, and hope your surgery goes as smoothly as mine.

Take care

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