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Old 05-04-2011, 11:08 AM   #1
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Join Date: May 2011
Location: Madison, WI
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sandyambee HB User
Angry Just found out about a possible Rectal Sphincter muscle tear

I have a son that just turned 30 and he was 10 pounds when he was born and they had to use forceps, lots of stitches down there but no one said anything about the Rectal Sphincter muscle being torn. Two years later I had a 9 pound baby girl, again stitches, again nothing was said. Now for the past 9 months I have been dealing with bowel incontinence and having been seeing doctor after doctor and no one being able to tell me what is going on. I had an ultra sound, CT scan with dye, changed my diet many, many times, tons of blood tests, added Miralax and Fiber One to my diet and nothing is getting better. I went back to my family doctor yesterday because of all my frustration and what it seemed to me as a lack of knowledge from the doctors of gastrointestinal department. He asked if any one tested my rectum for muscle weakness. I said no, so he did one using his finger as a starting place. He asked about the birth of my children and when I told him about them, he told me that he was sending me in for a Rectum Manometry on May 19th. He tells me that he is pretty sure that I had a tear when the kids were born and the muscle has either opened back up completely or it has weakened to the point that I will probably need surgery to fix it. I have been reading the posts on here about the additional testing I should have done once I get the results back from this test and then also reading what people have been going through post-op.
You see I have Obsessive Compulsive/Anxiety Disorder, which was diagnosed in 1997, my type is contamination and the fear of the unknown. As you may have guessed, the last 9 months have been causing my OCD to escalate especially with the more accidents that I have.
I started running a year ago and now I'm afraid to go out for a run because I've had so many accidents even on short runs. Working is even very difficult at times because as a retail sales associate, I can't always walk away from customers to try to get to the bathroom in time.
I would like to hear from any of you regarding the testing, surgery, post op. I live in Madison, WI, and I don't even know how to go about finding a doctor to do the surgery, if all the tests show that I need the surgery.
I'm so scared, anxious, and very depressed about all of this.

 
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Old 05-04-2011, 01:22 PM   #2
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Re: Just found out about a possible Rectal Sphincter muscle tear

It is a good idea to get a rectal manomatry just to get information on the extent of the damage from child birth. Knowledge is power.

However, because your incontinence only started 30 years after the birth, I would first try to do kegel exercises for 6 months to strengthen the muscles, regardless of what a surgeon recommends. Obviously you have had enough muscle for 30 years to keep you continent for so long, so it may well be possible to strengthen the muscles to function again without surgery. Surgery can cause additional issues that you didn't have before, surgery rarely gives a 100% cure. You should have been told to do kegels from day 1 after birth, to avoid the issues you have now, but they didn't have focus on such things back then. But it's not too late, so find a physiotherapist who is specialized in pelvic floor exercises or find information on the internet and start doing kegels already today.

My issues started immediately after birth, and even after years of kegels I didn't become 100%, so I had surgery done. Things are much better now after surgery, but still not 100%. They probably never will be. I kegel until I'm blue in the face and will do so for the rest of my life. For me being continent for 30 years after birth like you have been is like a dream, I wish it were me, then I would just be doing kegels and things would be fine (I believe). Kegels are so important, it takes many months before you notice an improvement so you should give it 6 months at least.

Good luck!

 
Old 05-04-2011, 01:46 PM   #3
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Join Date: May 2011
Location: Madison, WI
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sandyambee HB User
Re: Just found out about a possible Rectal Sphincter muscle tear

Thanks for your thoughts. I have done Kegals in the past. When each child was born and for the past 9 months of going from doctor to doctor. I have read from past posts that surgery isn't a cure all. After reading all the posts on here, I have all the same symptoms that people have talked about during their diagnosis process and the surgery post ops.
I also suffer from Obsessive Compulsive/Anxiety Disorder and this new development has made that even worse. I'm at the point where I just want to sit in my house and do nothing, this is what I was like in 1997 when I was first diagnosed with that. This is bringing back so many bad memories and as you know the additional possible embarrassment is twice the anxiety. I will keep researching everything and just wait to see what the tests show and what my family doctor recommends the next step to be.

Thank you again.

 
Old 05-04-2011, 02:37 PM   #4
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Re: Just found out about a possible Rectal Sphincter muscle tear

I'm glad that you've been doing kegels. How often do you do them? Do you feel any effect? It's important to do them daily for 6-12 months. Did you have any symptoms of bowel incontinence after the births or nothing at all?

Have you tried Immodium? I have found that it helps me on bad days.

If you feel that kegels don't work, and the damage is found to be extensive, I would be the first to recommend surgery. It wasn't too bad for me, I had no complications, but did get a few issues that I didn't have before. My muscle strength has improved a lot since surgery and I can hold it in much longer. However, I have problems with mucus seeping through, and some days I have up to 5 BMs, especially if the BMs are soft, something I didn't have before surgery. I find that Immodium helps with these issues, which I'm so happy about! I do get disheartened sometimes because of my new issues, but I'm very happy about my control of solid stool, which will hopefully improve even more with kegels.

If you feel surgery is your only option, then I recommend it.

 
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