Post-Op Reversal Week One....A Week Of Wonders :)
Well, it's been a week and 2 days since my reversal surgery.
I came home from the hospital on Monday, Feb. 6....2 days earlier than I was originally slated to leave! Other than some minor glitches (more about these below); I have fared FAR BETTER than I ever thought that I would at this early stage of my recovery! They were able to do the procedure laparoscopically; and for this I am most thankful! And, as I read up on a couple of folks whose reversals were done a week or two earlier than mine; it seems that many of us are healing well! Fable3 just had her reversal done on the 6th and is doing well so far; and Dave_Canada is scheduled for his reversal in about a week and a half. My prayers and positive energy continue to flow towards my fellow ostomates; as we all continue towards our journeys of health, healing and hope!
Here are some of my "week one" observations....
OK, this one is a mixed bag....no pun intended! ;) It is very weird being "bagless" after having the bag for over a year. The bowel hath awakened with a vengeance!
The doc has me on 5 mg. of Lomotil before each meal, and 5 mg before bedtime to help slow the bm's down. I am also taking hydrocodone 5/500 (2 pills) every 4-6 hours for pain, and to assist with slowing things down as well. The first couple of days after surgery, I was having about 20 liquid stools per day and a couple of nighttime accidents. Since I've been home, I haven't had any nighttime accidents, and the total liquid stool volume hovers between 12-15 per day. My bm's are more frequent and more liquid than some of the other reversal candidates due to the fact that I have no large intestine left. So, my reversal procedure consisted of my small intestine being attached to my rectum....no J pouch; I had enough rectum left to serve as a reservoir. In a couple more weeks (after some of the distention in my tummy subsides); I'll start on a regimen of psyllium husks before meals....this should "firm things up" a little bit, too. Silent victories. Small steps.
I have 4 wounds on my lower abdomen. One is on the right, where "Old Faithful" resided for 13 months. It is healing from the inside out. Very clean, and together. One is right at/above my navel; and then another small one on the left, at the waistline. These are my "lapo-holes." The last one is on the left; where the jp drain resided for a few days following surgery. Again, no visible sutures. All areas healing nicely.
I am technically on a "soft" diet.....trying different, easy to digest foods that don't put a lot of pressure on things.....Greek yogurt, chicken, fish, eggs....good protein sources. I haven't done a lot of veggies yet. Have also done some brown rice, banana; a little french toast....some frozen yogurt. No red meat yet. Mainly water to drink.....I'm trying to avoid caffeine for now. So far, so good. Not a lot of excess gas to rumble around in my sore abdominal area!
I had a lot of low blood pressure problems in the hospital, and to combat this the docs pumped me full with bag after bag of IV fluids; sometimes 2 bags concurrently. My bp normally runs low; so this really didn't help things and, as a result, I gained 30 lbs of water weight (yes, 30 lbs!) in 5 days! They didn't want to send me home on Lasix due to the fear of electrolyte imbalance and/or dehydration; so my tissues are still VERY waterlogged and the skin on my ankles and lower legs is on the verge of splitting! Does anyone know of a good otc supplement, herb, tea? that might help get rid of some of this extra fluid?
5. Phantoms ;)
During the past several days, I have "caught" myself many times feeling over to see if my stoma (Old Faithful) is ok and if my bag needs to be changed! Old habits die hard, yes?
My first post-op appointment with my surgeon is scheduled for Monday, Feb 20th. I'll update again shortly thereafter.
I sit here barely able to see as the tears roll down my face. Rest in peace, Dawneagle (Carol).....you are an incredible spirit who is now free to soar with the Angels. Thank you for everything you are, and have been, to us. You will be remembered. FRIEND.