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    Old 07-18-2004, 09:15 PM   #1
    CDauthier
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    Question Colostomy reversal

    Husband is due to have colostomy reversal on 8-3-04 (colon resection due to severe diverticulitis) in November of 04 went bad...emergency surgery 3 days later...ICU for 11 days on ventilator...nightmare. Colostomy reversal to be open. Would appreciate your comments on your reversal...how many days in hospital, did doc close stoma or let it close on it's on...anything that you would have done differently if had it to do over again, etc. Thanks a million! Cathy

     
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    Old 07-19-2004, 08:16 PM   #2
    CancerDad
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    Re: Colostomy reversal

    Hi Cathy:
    I had a reversal of ileostomy two months ago. Post low rectal surgery for Stage 3C cancer. The closure is a piece of cake. I'm assuming they already reattached post resection then created a temp colostomy in order to allow lower to heal. They just do a horizontal incision on sides of stoma... they then bring the colon thru the skin to staple a new opening in to allow continuity in the colon and close the colostomy. Then they typically will staple the skin to know if an infection is brewing. Your husband will have soreness from so much manipulation of tissue thru such a small opening, but it was nothing compared to my vertical incision for the first surgery. Did he have his first surgery-- the resection--laparascopically?

    Anyway, some people recover and are back to work within 3 weeks... other normal people it takes a little longer. Trick is to exercise those lungs, and get him out of bed as soon as possible... should be day after surgery.

    Best of luck, and let me know if you have any other questions. Congrats on the reversal. Hopefully he will adjust pretty quickly.

    Regards,
    CancerDad (aka James)

     
    Old 07-19-2004, 09:43 PM   #3
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    Re: Colostomy reversal

    James,
    Thanks for reply. 1st surgery done combination lap and vertical incision up to navel. 8 inches of sigmoid removed. Incision due to a mass (not malignant....too big for lap removal) at site of diverticulosis area. 3 days later emergency surgery due to leak at reconnection site..peritinitis..rough going at first but doing great now. Reversal will have vertical incision same as before but this time will go above navel also we are told. Colon was mobilized from spleen during 1st surgery. He's due to have colonoscopy on the 2nd for doc to see what all he has to do during surgery, followed by surgery the next day. Colon/rectal surgeon this time around..lap surgeon the 1st time. Thanks for the lung tip...will follow thru for sure! Lungs were what almost did him in last time...he kept telling nurses he couldn't breathe and they kept telling him he was just anxious when in reality fluid was building up in his lungs from the infection. No one listened to his lungs! Came within 2 hours of dying in his hospital room we were later told. Have appointment with hospital administration several days before he goes back in this time to plan out his care. It's really crazy but have found you have to go in knowing a lot more than they (the nurses) do. Also, will get a good chair brought in for him to sit in...the kind that's more condusive to sitting in after surgery....rather than the generic chairs they have in the rooms. This time around too, I'm bringing my own stethoscope, thermometer, charts to chart his bp, temp, pulse, pulse ox, etc... On the morning of his emergency surgery (surgery at 4:00 pm) respitory therapist told us his pulse ox was 76....didn't have the foggiest idea what that meant! Of course, if it happens again, you can bet he won't lay there for 8 more hours before they do something. Sorry, kind of getting off subject...just rehashing all what happened before so it won't happen again. Reversal will be approximately 8 1/2 months since colostomy. Understand the longer the time between colostomy and reversal, the longer the adjustment time. The lap surgeon was going to do it after 3 months, but then we switched to colon/rectal specialist and he said that was way too soon with what all husband had been through. He said in his case he waits at least 6 months but would prefer a year..but agreed to split the difference so he'd be ready for hunting season! Again, thanks for your response. Hope you are on the road to complete recovery. Was feeling sorry for myself and him til I watched tv tonight about children with progeria (accelerated aging) and then saw your post and thought about what you must have gone through. Have decided to turn over a new leaf and quit whinning...it can always be worse! Take care and thanks! Cathy

     
    Old 07-19-2004, 11:51 PM   #4
    ken1967
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    Re: Colostomy reversal

    i had emergency colon resection surgery back in sept 03 due to diverticulits(it perforated), i needed a colostomy for 3 months following the surgery,i had full incision surgery 8 inch incision, surgeon doesnt remember how many inches of the large intestine he took out(which kinda bothered me) then in dec 03 i had the resection done and the ostomy hole and main 8 inch incision was partially closed up and stapled but surgeon said the 2nd surgery they dont close up entirely, they let it heal from inside out, it was quite sore and had to have a nurse come and repack it every day,for the time i was in the hospital and about 3 weeks after i went home, the 2nd sugery i think was harder because they had to go and reopen everything that was just starting to heal from the first surgery and plus changing the packing hurt like heck,i was in the hospital for 10 days the first time and was sent to icu because i too had a hard time breathing and had to have some really nasty x ray done in the nuclear medicine dept( i was very drugged up and was still scary but what ever was wrong cleared up,) the 2nd surgery i was in for only 8 days, recovery was slow but i noticed a gradual improvement and like the other poster said make sure he does his breathing exercises and walks,ive been feeling fine except for the past 3 weeks having dull pains in my belly which seem to move around and then go away and come back, docs arent sure yet if its surgery related(adhesions,scar tissue etc) or my gall bladder,or ibs or colitis or crohns,who knows, but other than that, ive had a very good recovery and best wished to you and your husband

     
    Old 07-20-2004, 06:11 AM   #5
    auntjudyg
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    Re: Colostomy reversal

    The reversal with be a piece of cake compared with what you have gone through already. Geesh! Your husband ought to monitor his temperature for a couple of months after surgery. Infection is the most common negative consequence. (Mine didn't really show up until 7 weeks after surgery. Oh, my colostomy/reversal were four years ago.) The hospital stay is generally 4 to 5 days. The only other recommendation is for the long-term . . . change eating habits, it can recur! Be diligent about increasing fiber, water, etc. Don't allow the GI track to become sluggish even for one day. If fiber is a little sparse in food one day, take a supplement before it is needed.

    Good luck!

     
    Old 07-20-2004, 06:33 PM   #6
    CDauthier
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    Re: Colostomy reversal

    Thanks Ken and Judy,

    Ken, please keep us posted on what's going on with you...sure hope it corrects itself..
    you've been through enough!

    Judy,thanks for the heads up on the infection that long after surgery...where did infection originate...from reconnection site?..and how was it treated. He's ready for the citrucel after reversal...and he could kick himself for not being religious with it 25 years ago when he was advised by the doc to take something daily. Just had colonoscopy myself and they found diverticulosis...never had a flare up...so we both will be on citrucel plus continue to eat healthy as well..also both discovered that water is not just for watering plants! Thanks, Cathy

     
    Old 07-21-2004, 06:19 AM   #7
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    Re: Colostomy reversal

    The infection (an abscess) formed a couple of inches below the belly button. As for the area's significance to the surgery, it's hard to say for sure since a lot went on. It was a couple of inches away from the main reconnection action, but I also had the appendix out, a fibroid removed, and a cystic ovary removed.

    The infection really flared up over a weekend, so with mixups/miscommunications with the doctor's office, it was REALLY bad before I finally got treated. So I was back in the hospital for almost a week, another small incision was made, a drain installed, IV antibiotics.

     
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