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Old 10-04-2007, 01:44 PM   #1
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Atlanta
Posts: 20
lady287 HB User
1st hospitalization for diverticulitis

I am new to the website and have many questions. For years I had thought that my gassiness and bloated stomach were normal, that maybe I had just eaten too fast. With a couple of Gas-X, it usually went away within 24 hours. But last week I was still doubled over well into the third day. It was more concentrated this time, only in a specific area – my lower right side. (Yes, I have right sided diverticulitis). So I went to the ER, because I thought it was my appendix. A cat scan showed an inflamed colon, with a pinhole perforation. They kept me in for four days. I’ve been told that after my colonoscopy in four weeks that I need to schedule my bowel resection surgery four weeks after that. Here are my questions:
1). Is it possible that I don’t need this surgery? I have read on the website that many people were happier after they had it. But it does seem like a pretty big deal. Three to five day hospitalization with a month off work.
2). I’ve been home for five days now and still don’t feel very well. I am on 500 mls of Levaquin and 2000 mls of Flagel a day. Besides the nausea, I am quite weak. I am still bloated, with occasional shooting pains or cramping. (No constant pain in my side though.) Is this normal?
3). What, on earth, am I supposed to be eating? I was told to do the BRAT diet and “ease” myself back into regular food. I have gone from bananas, rice, applesauce, and toast -- to a few eggs, some whole grain pasta with marinara, and a turkey sandwich. I would love to have a salad, but the thought of that roughage scares me. What about fruits and vegetables? Am I supposed to be eating those? I’ve been getting some fiber through whole wheat/high fiber toast. Am I supposed to be taking Metamusil now? Or am I supposed to wait?
4). I am on a extreme lowfat diet called the Swank diet as a holistic way to treat MS. I have been on it for fifteen months now, and I am managing my MS phenomenally well. I eat no dairy (except nonfat), no red meat (lots of chicken and turkey though) and no desserts (can’t have chocolate, butter, cream, etc.) I had noticed though, that my “gassiness” seemed to be a little worse since being on this diet. I know most of you out there aren’t doctors, but does anyone see where this could have hurt me more? To keep weight on, I did end up eating a lot of bread and pasta. Probably mostly white bread and regular egg pasta…
I appreciate any help. I know that the MS message boards have helped me a lot, and what better people to talk to than the people going through the same ordeal. Thank you….

 
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Old 10-04-2007, 02:07 PM   #2
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: California
Posts: 2,095
Redneon82 HB User
Re: 1st hospitalization for diverticulitis

Quote:
Originally Posted by Carol411 View Post
I am new to the website and have many questions. For years I had thought that my gassiness and bloated stomach were normal, that maybe I had just eaten too fast. With a couple of Gas-X, it usually went away within 24 hours. But last week I was still doubled over well into the third day. It was more concentrated this time, only in a specific area – my lower right side. (Yes, I have right sided diverticulitis). So I went to the ER, because I thought it was my appendix. A cat scan showed an inflamed colon, with a pinhole perforation. They kept me in for four days. I’ve been told that after my colonoscopy in four weeks that I need to schedule my bowel resection surgery four weeks after that. Here are my questions:
1). Is it possible that I don’t need this surgery? I have read on the website that many people were happier after they had it. But it does seem like a pretty big deal. Three to five day hospitalization with a month off work.
2). I’ve been home for five days now and still don’t feel very well. I am on 500 mls of Levaquin and 2000 mls of Flagel a day. Besides the nausea, I am quite weak. I am still bloated, with occasional shooting pains or cramping. (No constant pain in my side though.) Is this normal?
3). What, on earth, am I supposed to be eating? I was told to do the BRAT diet and “ease” myself back into regular food. I have gone from bananas, rice, applesauce, and toast -- to a few eggs, some whole grain pasta with marinara, and a turkey sandwich. I would love to have a salad, but the thought of that roughage scares me. What about fruits and vegetables? Am I supposed to be eating those? I’ve been getting some fiber through whole wheat/high fiber toast. Am I supposed to be taking Metamusil now? Or am I supposed to wait?
4). I am on a extreme lowfat diet called the Swank diet as a holistic way to treat MS. I have been on it for fifteen months now, and I am managing my MS phenomenally well. I eat no dairy (except nonfat), no red meat (lots of chicken and turkey though) and no desserts (can’t have chocolate, butter, cream, etc.) I had noticed though, that my “gassiness” seemed to be a little worse since being on this diet. I know most of you out there aren’t doctors, but does anyone see where this could have hurt me more? To keep weight on, I did end up eating a lot of bread and pasta. Probably mostly white bread and regular egg pasta…
I appreciate any help. I know that the MS message boards have helped me a lot, and what better people to talk to than the people going through the same ordeal. Thank you….

Hi there, I would like to try to address your concerns. I have gone through 3 total hospitalizations for diverticulitis and am scheduled for a resection on Nov. 5th. I am on antibiotics right now because I am having a flare up.
1) I CANNOT WAIT to have the surgery. It is so stressful to keep having flare ups and worry about perforations and abscesses (I've had both). My most recent hospitalization was for 11 days total (5 days, sent home for a day and a half, back in for 6 days). The idea that this will never happen again is wonderful.
2)The antibiotics take some time to work. Even though I had been in the hospital receiving IV antibiotics, I still had pain and discomfort for a couple of weeks at home on the pills. I have slept all day today due to the effects of the drugs, but it beats an abscess or perforation, or being in the hospital. Your symptoms are everything I have experienced, so I presume it is normal.
3)I supplement my bland diet (fish, chicken and vegetables [cooked]) with a glass of metamucil every night, and twice a day if I'm constipated. Constipation is the number one enemy of your colon and must be avoided if possible by diverticulosis patients, so I do what I can. Of course, I still get comstipated which is why I got another infection. I avoid raw vegetables and don't really eat salads. I am also lactose intolerant which complicates things. I find that rice and bread tend to aggravate my colon, so I don't eat rice and eat very little bread. Mostly potatoes and some pasta. I also drink either Ovaltine or Ensure to get the vitamins that my limited diet doesn't provide. I recommend them. (This might also answer #4).

I hope some of this helps. This board has been a Godsend for me, since I have been extremely nervous, not about the surgery but about the wait. These people are fantastic.

Good luck, and hope to hear from you again with good news!

 
Old 10-04-2007, 07:55 PM   #3
Senior Member
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Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 186
maggiemoo HB User
Re: 1st hospitalization for diverticulitis

lady287,

Sorry you have had quite a time. My story was much like yours. I had a microperforation with my first bout of diverticulitis.

1. The concern is that once you have had a perforation then you are at high risk for another one. You were extremely lucky this time to avoid emergency surgery. Most perforations require emergency surgery which result in a temporary colostomy. Emergency surgery means emergency surgery--it doesn't mean getting home to your own hospital and doctor. I chose the resection surgery because I didn't want to worry about it happening again. I wanted to control when, where and who did my surgery.

2. The meds that you are on are notorious for making people feel bad. You'll most likely start feeling better once you are off of them. However you must take them as long as your doctor says to. Don't quit them because they make you feel bad.

3 &4. I was on a low-residue diet following my hospitalization. Low-residue is basically -white bread, peeled, cooked fruits and vegetables, no nuts or popcorn. I think you probably need to call your doctor to get more clarification about what to eat. You don't want to take the chance of anything else getting caught while you are still healing.

Maggie

Last edited by maggiemoo; 10-04-2007 at 07:56 PM. Reason: type

 
Old 10-05-2007, 06:15 PM   #4
Senior Member
(female)
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 138
MrsQueeZ HB User
Re: 1st hospitalization for diverticulitis

I had trouble with a lot of foods while I waited for my surgery. I had eliminated any whole wheat products and whole grain rice, no vegetables or fruit at all, other than applesauce or canned green beans perhaps. No potato skins, fruit preserves, no popcorn of course, or seeds of any kind, such as strawberries or raspberries. No peas or corn. It almost seemed like the more processed, the easier on the gut. Even with this, I remained on the antibiotics up until the surgery due to continuous flare ups, and I monitored my temperature daily, or any time I felt flushed. The pains came and went pretty regularly. Boy, I DON'T miss this whole routine!!!!

Renata

 
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