It appears you have not yet Signed Up with our community. To Sign Up for free, please click here....



Bowel Disorders Message Board
Post New Thread   Closed Thread
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 04-02-2009, 05:42 AM   #1
Junior Member
(male)
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 12
Davidd42 HB User
Question I need advice/opinions on Colon Resection

I was diagnosed with Diverticulitis several years ago but I have always had minor pain and discomfort associated with the flare ups. However, for the last four months I have had severe pain (on and off), two CT Scans and a colonoscopy. My doctor (gastroenteroligist) has recommended surgery but said that it was actually up to me at this point. He did not feel it was severe enough to warrant emergency surgery but said I would eventually need to have about 1 foot of my colon removed. I have been on antibiotics for most of the previous 4 months. Sometimes the pain is so severe I cannot work and I usually have a slight fever associated with the pain.

I would like to hear the pros and cons from people who had part of their colon removed and what advice you can give me about the surgery? I am a 46 yo male and I've never had surgery so all of this is somewhat scary to me.
Any advice, opinions or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks,
David

 
Sponsors Lightbulb
   
Old 04-02-2009, 10:52 AM   #2
Senior Member
(male)
 
greg1x's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Tampa.Fl.
Posts: 200
greg1x HB User
Cool Re: I need advice/opinions on Colon Resection

Greetings David. You are the age I was when I had my sigmoid colectomy done (3 years ago) . I am surprised your MD is not more insistant about having surgery. Does not seem like there is any other option than the surgery to me. If you end up having it on an emergency basis you will more than likely end up with a colostomy for 6 months. I had mine on a Tuesday, left the hospital on Saturday morning. Recovery was not that bad. I took 5 week off work myself. I have had no recurrrences since. Greg


Quote:
Originally Posted by Davidd42 View Post
I was diagnosed with Diverticulitis several years ago but I have always had minor pain and discomfort associated with the flare ups. However, for the last four months I have had severe pain (on and off), two CT Scans and a colonoscopy. My doctor (gastroenteroligist) has recommended surgery but said that it was actually up to me at this point. He did not feel it was severe enough to warrant emergency surgery but said I would eventually need to have about 1 foot of my colon removed. I have been on antibiotics for most of the previous 4 months. Sometimes the pain is so severe I cannot work and I usually have a slight fever associated with the pain.

I would like to hear the pros and cons from people who had part of their colon removed and what advice you can give me about the surgery? I am a 46 yo male and I've never had surgery so all of this is somewhat scary to me.
Any advice, opinions or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks,
David

 
Sponsors Lightbulb
   
Old 04-02-2009, 03:13 PM   #3
Junior Member
(female)
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Central, Texas
Posts: 22
cawstorm HB User
Re: I need advice/opinions on Colon Resection

David,

I had about 12" removed from my colon April 14 of last year--almost my one year anniversary. Like you, I had suffered with diverticulitis for about two years. Attacks became more frequent and worse each time. AFter a stay in the hospital for an abcess, I decided my gastroenterologist was correct. Surgery was best option for me. So, I spent two months getting over the infection, then had the surgery. I've never looked back. It is the best thing I could have done. No problems now, eating whatever I'd like. Of course, high fiber diet is recommended so you do not develop anymore diverticula.

It is a difficult decision and a personal one. I did not want to risk a rupture and having to have emergency surgery with chance of colostomy. To be honest, the surgery wasn't much worse than the last attack I had--the pain and the meds were terrible!!

Best wishes to you.

Last edited by cawstorm; 04-02-2009 at 03:14 PM.

 
Old 04-02-2009, 03:17 PM   #4
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Posts: 2,383
auntjudyg HB User
Re: I need advice/opinions on Colon Resection

Hi David! In January 2000, at age 44, I had an emergency resection - my first surgery. In retrospect, there had been signs, but even that few years ago most doctors still thought of diverticulitis as only happening in people over 60. How things change!

In watching this and other internet boards since, there have been a number of threads on resection that have gotten hundreds of responses. (Several were right here, but I don't know how to search those things.)

First, doctors are very different in surgery recommendations. What I have read most often is that, when people are getting attacks (requiring hospitalization and/or antibiotics) more than about 3 times a year or when attacks are interferring with work and daily living, it is time to operate. So, it is sounding like it is about time.

Your surgery MIGHT be done laproscopically. If so, it would be much easier. But depending on many factors, that might not be possible. So, it is difficult to say what you would face with surgery. In any event, yes, it's scary; but everyone I have known to have it, including a friend's 86-year-old mother, has come through it just fine.

Surgery can be like getting a clean slate. In all probability, the attacks will stop! HOWEVER, lifestyle and eating changes will be needed, or diverticulitis can recur very quickly. It really is not a big deal - more fiber (some do it with supplements; I think it is better to increase veggies and fruits, legumes, etc.); yogurt regularly; plenty of water; and more exercise can help the colon function better.

Don't want to overwhelm you at once. Let us know what you are going to do, and when.

Best wishes!

 
Old 04-02-2009, 09:20 PM   #5
Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Pittsburgh PA
Posts: 344
libloom HB User
Re: I need advice/opinions on Colon Resection

Hi David.....

I, too, had colon re-section surgery for Diverticulitis and my surgeon was able to do it laparoscopically. He removed a foot of my badly diseased colon almost 2 years ago this June.

Any sort of surgery is frightening and you wouldn't be normal if you weren't scared. Find yourself a good colo-rectal surgeon and go for it. You don't want to have it done on an emergency basis should the colon perforate. They'd have to do a temporary colostomy (which would later be reversed) making recovery a little more difficult.

I was off work for a month after surgery. I am no stranger to surgery, and the recovery wasn't bad at all. Do try to consult with a surgeon who has lots of experience with the laparoscope. I had open abdominal surgery years ago and the recovery from my re-section was a lot easier....altho, regardless of surgical approach, the same healing is going on inside. Just a difference in incision sizes.

I really don't think you have a choice, and, believe me, making the decision to move forward and have the surgery is the hardest part. Besides, worrying about the ticking time bomb, which Diverticulitis is, can be daunting.

Much good luck,
Linda

 
Old 04-03-2009, 07:53 AM   #6
Junior Member
(female)
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Central, Texas
Posts: 22
cawstorm HB User
Re: I need advice/opinions on Colon Resection

"ticking time bomb"--that's how my doctor described it also. I agree, that making the decision to have surgery is the hardest part. When I was originally told I needed the surgery, I didn't have a dr in my area that did it laproscopically. In the next year, we had a young doctor come to our city. He had a wonderful job and I couldn't have been more pleased. It was easier to recover from than an open surgery. People tend to think because you don't have the big incision, "it's no big deal." You do have to realize you did have the same things done inside, just no large incision. So take time to recover fully.

Once again, it has taken such stress and worry from my life. I used to be fearful of going out of town for fear that I'd have an attack. Always had my antibiotics with me when I travelled--just in case.

Best of luck to you with your decision and your health.

 
Old 04-04-2009, 02:15 AM   #7
Junior Member
(male)
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 12
Davidd42 HB User
Re: I need advice/opinions on Colon Resection

Wow! Thanks for all the response. I do think the best decision is for me to go ahead with the surgery. I went to another doctor to get a second opinion and she basically said what you all have said. She highly recommends the gastro Dr. I have been seeing and he is the Dr. that will do the surgery. I greatly appreciate everyone sharing their experiences with me. I am going to have the surgery. I have an appt to see my gastro Dr. this coming week. I will post my progress on here. Thanks, David

 
Old 04-05-2009, 03:08 PM   #8
Junior Member
(female)
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Central, Texas
Posts: 22
cawstorm HB User
Re: I need advice/opinions on Colon Resection

Best wishes to you and be sure and keep us posted!

 
Old 04-06-2009, 09:40 PM   #9
Member
(female)
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Corpus Christi, Tx USA
Posts: 74
Kinselmom HB User
Smile Re: I need advice/opinions on Colon Resection

After suffering chronic Diverticulitis (9 flare-ups in the past 10 months) I had my colectomy on April 1st. It would have been done earlier in the year but I had some problems with the medical clearance. Here I am, just 5 days after the surgery, home and on the computer!! I was discharged yesterday after a remarkably swift recovery. I was up in a chair within 12 hrs post-op, and up walking within 24 hrs. My procedure was done via hand assisted laproscopy, which means that it is somewhere between the open procedure and the lap. I have an extra, larger incision big enough for the surgeron to slip one hand in to assist with the process. I was off the morphine pump within 36 hours, had nothing for the next 36 hrs til the NPO order was lifted. All the plumbing started working and I was discharged with a script for Darvocet which I am only needing once or twice a day. This is not much worse than the attacks of diverticulitis!

I know the swiftness of my recovery is not typical. But as someone who has so recently gone thru this, I will highly recommend you go ahead and have the surgery! There was someone else in a room just down the hall who waited til they had an obstruction and they are way worse off than I ever was, will be in the hospital much longer, and will have a colostomy, at least temporarily. I think having the procedure done electively is the only way to go. I am so looking forward to putting this whole thing behind me instead of waiting for the inevitable incapacitating flare-ups every 4-6 weeks like I had been for the past year! I feel like I have taken a huge step towards reclaiming my life!!!

 
Old 04-06-2009, 10:50 PM   #10
Newbie
(male)
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Palmerston Nth, NZ
Posts: 8
Jeggles HB User
Unhappy Re: I need advice/opinions on Colon Resection

David, I am surprised at the very positive replies you have had without any hints of subsequent problems. That's great and I hope you experience the same if you go ahead. However, I have to express a bit of sceptisism. I had colorectal cancer surgery late last year which involved the removel of 30cm of my large bowel. I had an illeostomy bag for some months before a resection in November last year. I still have some discomfort with bowel activity. Only recently has it been possible for me to actually go anywhere due to faecal incontinence and lack of warning. I am now able to manage these issues to the stage when I can go out but as I now don't have the same waste storage capacity I cannot retain bowel motions so that food moving down thru the small colon reaches the end of its journey much quicker meaning I do not retain food for as long. When I do start going I may go numerous times over a period of a few hours and then be OK for the next 12+ hours. I am learning to live with this but do not expect my situation to ever be as it was pre surgery. The colon is very susceptable to disturbance so I am surprised that your responders haven't experienced any
similar issues.
One product I take which certainly helps my situation is called BowelBiotics
by Lifestream. Available in New Zealand but don't know where else. It firms up bowel motions and creates the desired bowel environment for regularity, digestion etc whilst also eliminating odour and other unpleasant things associated with such body functions.
Good luck with whatever you decide but I would certainly exhaust all other options first including possible remedies.

 
Old 04-07-2009, 08:38 AM   #11
Junior Member
(male)
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 12
Davidd42 HB User
Re: I need advice/opinions on Colon Resection

Kinselmom, I hope you continue to have a speedy recovery and thank you for sharing your recent experience. It certainly help me confirm what I knew had to be done. Thanks to everyone that commented and advised. At this point I feel that my only option is to have the resection surgery done. I do not want to keep prolonging this thinking that it will eventually go away and end up with a perforated colon which as we all know is very serious. I have discussed surgury with my doctor and I am awaiting a phone call from his scheduler to schedule the pre-op stuff like the blood work, EKG etc and to confirm a date for the surgery. I sincerely appreciate everyones advice. I will post as soon after my surgery as possible.

 
Old 04-07-2009, 11:38 AM   #12
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Posts: 2,383
auntjudyg HB User
Re: I need advice/opinions on Colon Resection

Again, best wishes!

 
Old 04-07-2009, 03:33 PM   #13
Senior Veteran
(female)
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: California
Posts: 2,095
Redneon82 HB User
Re: I need advice/opinions on Colon Resection

Perhaps recovery from surgery due to cancer is different than recovery from surgery due to diverticulitis?

I had surgery November 2007. I had open surgery and had about a foot and a half of colon removed. Recovery from the surgery itself was fairly quick (back to work in 6 weeks, energy level back about 3 months) but it actually took my colon a little over a year to start functioning without pain. Of course, it was my diet and not the surgery that caused the problems.

Ask your doctor to be very specific as far as your diet post-surgery. I asked my surgeon what I could eat and he answered "anything you want!" I mentioned craving a big steak...he replied "go have one!". Wrong, wrong, wrong! I followed his advice and had a year of grief.

Go easy on your colon, ask your doctor for specific advice, and take it as easy as you need to. And yes, the surgery was infinitely easier than the constant attacks and antiobiotics that made me sicker than the disease. I would go through the surgery again rather than another attack. That's the truth.

Good luck! Hope all goes well!

 
Old 04-07-2009, 09:26 PM   #14
Member
(female)
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Corpus Christi, Tx USA
Posts: 74
Kinselmom HB User
Re: I need advice/opinions on Colon Resection

Jeggles, I didn't mean to imply that I will not have any subsequent after effects from this surgery, and I doubt the others meant that either. I'm not trying to paint a rosy picture here. Of COURSE there are after effects! Unfortunately there is no surgery (or other treatment I am aware of) that will fix this problem (diverticulitis) and make you like you were before this came into your life. You are absolutely right about the smaller storage capacity and what that entails. But having had IBS for 35 years, I already know the location of every bathroom in my town. I just refuse to let the IBS make me a prisoner in my own home. My dietary restrictions will be different, too. Like another poster, my Dr said I could eat whatever I want after surgery, but I have done enough research to know that I'm taking big risks with certain kinds of foods.

Davidd42 you ARE aware that the resection is not a miracle cure, right? Make yourself as knowledgable as possible about these issues before you proceed. But for me, even with the aftereffects, having this surgery is a means to greatly improve my life in general. It is a way of taking control and getting my life back closer to 'normal'.

 
Old 04-11-2009, 04:48 PM   #15
Member
(female)
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Georgia
Posts: 86
Suzzana HB User
Re: I need advice/opinions on Colon Resection

Hi David...I am also having a resection this month due to diverticulitis and colitis. I am scheduled for laparoscopic surgery....are you having a lap or open? Good luck, Suzzana

 
Closed Thread

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Board Replies Last Post
I need some advice. polyp with high grade displasia DOMENIC Cancer: Colon 1 05-21-2009 06:41 AM

Tags
bowel, colon, diverticulitis



Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off




Sign Up Today!

Ask our community of thousands of members your health questions, and learn from others experiences. Join the conversation!

I want my free account

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 02:05 AM.



Site owned and operated by HealthBoards.comô
Terms of Use © 1998-2014 HealthBoards.comô All rights reserved.
Do not copy or redistribute in any form!