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Bowel Obstruction

Posted by aHappyGirl, on Sun Jan 25, 2015 6:04 pm

My husband has a bowel obstruction and is in the hospital facing possible surgery.  I am looking through this site to learn what I can about members' experiences with this sort of thing.

Background:

G has a colostomy due to a tumor that was removed 15 years ago.  A year and a half ago he had a hernia around the stoma which was surgically fixed with mesh and stoma revised.  That experience was difficult for G but he is now stable, comfortable and happy.  He irrigates every 2-days to maintain his bowel.

The problem:

We went on vacation this past Friday in AZ when G got severe cramps & vomits.  Within 8 hours we were in the ER.  G drank gastrographin yesterday morning and it advanced to a spot in the small intestne and has not moved further - it has been about 30 hours and day is day three since this started.  Earlier today after looking at the most recent Xray the doc says G has a "pseudo" stool stuck in narrowed small intestine that is trapped by scar tissue (adhesions).  

The doc wants to do a laproscopic surgery tomorrow morning and free this bowel by removing scar tissue.  He says it appears to be a distance away from the stoma and mesh.

We are nervous about being in a new place with a new doctor.  G has finally become very stable and comfortable after his previous surgery (which was an ordeal for him) and he is nervous about complications.  

We don't know whether to proceed as advised or wait longer or try to fly home to G's previous surgeon, Dr. A (4-hour flight).  Today is Sunday and we cannot talk to Dr. A until tomorrow.  But Dr. A's associate (on call) says there is no help that they can do from their office and without seeing G, cannot add any value to our dilema.

If any of you have any input, I would surely appreciate it.  Thanks,

-- a happy girl 

Reply by Ival, on Wed Jan 28, 2015 12:57 am

I trust you have made a wise decision by now.  I understand the idea of a new doctor in a new location - AZ has some excellent colo-rectal surgeons.

 

Reply by iMacG5, on Wed Jan 28, 2015 6:02 pm

Hey aHG, like lval, I trust you decided and probably did it.  I apologize for not offering any help when you asked and don't know what I might have offered.  I hope you'll share with us in the future and I know \'m not alone in thinking you and G handled it correctly.

So sorry,

Mike

WAB
Reply by WAB, on Fri Jan 30, 2015 1:53 pm

Is hard for any of us to comment on surgery decisions...however in this day of instant communications for everything....

I hope you put your Doctor( Surgeon) and the surgeon in Azizona in contact with each other....in case something has to be done immediately...........you will feel better by doing so......and have more information on what should be done........

good luck............

 

 

 

 

Reply by mild_mannered_super_hero, on Sat Jan 31, 2015 6:59 am

thanks everyone for the replies. i will update this story as i was the patient. the dr accuratly diagnoised me with a complete blockage of the small intestine. after two days of waiting for it to open on its own. he decided to use surgery to correct things. he was able to do it "lap" which left only 2 small holes on my right side "staying well away from my recent hernia repair". i was in surgery only a short time and started to recover almost immediatly. spent one additional night in hospital and went home the following afternoon. WHEW ...!!! i can tell you that a complete blockage is quite painful, seek medical assistance promptly as the painful cramping and nausea quickly render you incoherent to make an informed  judgement call should you be required to do so.thank goodness i was traveling with HAPPY GIRl and she could handle things till i got coherent again.   god bless

WAB
Reply by WAB, on Sat Jan 31, 2015 12:25 pm

WHEW is right Mike...and glad to see all went well......

.Lucky you were with Happy Girl.........must have been stressfull for you both........being away from home ..........

 

 

Reply by iMacG5, on Sat Jan 31, 2015 5:05 pm

Thanks MMSH for the update.  Great you had aHappyGirl with you and now we're all happier.  Wishing you more good stuff down the road.

Sincerely,

Mike

Reply by Zywie, on Sat Jan 31, 2015 7:23 pm

Yes, YAY for Happy Girl and YAY you are okay!!!!!  Didn't know this was you but was wondering how things turned out for the two of you. Nice to hear good news.   Hugs  Z

Reply by Primeboy, on Sun Feb 01, 2015 12:13 am

Hi Gerald. Glad to hear you are doing better. Last April my wife suffered greatly from the same symptom but her oncologists had predetermined her issue was a manifestation of cancer spread to her abdomen and decided to treat her problem with hydration pending surgery. Fortunately for her, I took her to the local ER one day when I came home and found her incredibly feeble. A young resident in a local hospital, with no deference to the Oncology experts, ordered a CAT scan and found she had a small bowel obstruction which was quickly treated successfully with nasogastric suctioning. Apparently, the cause of her problem was not cancer but the effects of a nasty medication. Anyway, the lesson we learned was a confirmation of the old adage, "If your only tool is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail." Too often patients get sterotyped by doctors according to their principal issues and their treatment options are then regrettably narrowed.

As an afterthought, too many young doctors channel their careers into specializations to the detriment of patients. We need more primary care doctors who are skilled at proper medical diagnosis before  referrals are made to specialists who are sometimes prone to tunnel vision.

Good luck and be well.

Reply by LadyHope, on Sun Feb 01, 2015 11:13 am

Hi MMSH and Happy Girl,  I am glad that you are feeling much better and the two of you had each other during this scare.  And being away from home traveling in an unfamiliar area.  What a nightmare.  Please keep us posted on your progress and recovery.  Thank goodness the doctor was able to do "lap" surgery and knew how to correct the problem.  Take care and best wishes for a speedy recovery. LH  

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