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Crohn's Disease Forum » Surgery » Resection surgery-recovery time?


03-01-2013, 07:17 AM   #1
Angelzig
 
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Resection surgery-recovery time?

Hi, my surgery story is (to me) quite a rollercoaster!

I saw my GI on Feb 4th, and he said that after reviewing a recent small bowel MRI, he was referring me to a surgeon. Feb 27th I see Colo-rectal surgeon who says 'you definately need surgery, normal waiting time on my list is 3 months, but I want to do yours before the end of March else you'll be coming in as an emergency'. Then today 1st March, only 2 days after seeing the surgeon, I get a phone call - surgery is next Friday 8th March. OMG!!!!

It all feels really quick, which is no bad thing! But I'm just wondering what to expect in terms of recovery. I know we are all different, and a lot depends on the surgery, but a ball-park idea would be great!

I have two young kids, who are off to stay at Granny's for at least two weeks, and a partner (he can be a bit rubbish but he'll do)! I just wonder how much 'looking after' I'm likely to need when I come out of hospital. I've only ever had my appendix out before, and I was 15 and living at home so had Mum on hand!

Thanks in advance for replies, my head is a bit all over at the moment!

Oh, the surgery is a right hemi-colectomy and removal of at least 10cms of terminal ileum. Hoping for key hole, but I've been prepared to expect that they may need to convert to open surgery.

Thanks!
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Dx Crohn's 2010, after symptoms for 12 years!
Crohn's affecting Colon and small intestine. Large stricture at TI - all scarring.

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Surgery: right hemicolectomy plus removal of stricture in TI (March 2013)

No meds at present!
03-01-2013, 08:10 AM   #2
hthompson631
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Hey Angel,
I'm in the same boat as you. I'm having surgery March 7th. My husband is taking the off the week after my surgery to help me out. I'm hoping that I will be fine after that. But I would like some insight from some of the other folks who have had surgery. I know everyone is different. I'm having hand assisted laproscopic Ileocolic resection. He said I would be in the hospital 3-6 days and recovery is 6-8 weeks.

I hope all goes well with your surgery.
03-01-2013, 08:19 AM   #3
afidz
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I haven't had a resection per say, so I can't really answer on that part of it, but I have had several open surgeries on my abdomen. Hope for laproscopic, but if it has to e open then so be it. if it is open, your recovery time will be extended as will the pain. You don't realize how much you use your abdomen until you can't. I generally stayed in the hospital about a week or so after each open surgery, a few of them were a bit longer. When you get home, do nothing but rest. Don't push yourself. Hernias can happen very easily if there is an open surgery. don't push your self to much either way.
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03-01-2013, 09:46 AM   #4
sdexter
 
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I had the same surgery on December 4th. I was out of the hospital 5 days later. I had my friends take my little dogs so they didn't jump on me. My partner had prepared to have the week off, but honestly, it wasn't needed. Yes, I was moving really slowly, but I was just in my reclining couch falling in and out of sleep, so I saw no point in him staying home to watch me rest. The main thing you need to avoid is LIFTING!! Do NOT lift your children for 8 weeks, or you will risk a hernia. I feel completely "normal" now. I did have keyhole surgery, but the incision was made a little larger since they had to take out more than they thought they would. It still is so amazing to me, and the scar looks better than I thought it would have even if they didn't have to make it bigger. I was very worried that I would have chronic diarrhea forever, but my stool is perfectly normal. They had expected to take 10cm of my terminal ileum, but had to take 20cm, so I was even more worried. It takes weeks for things to "settle in" until that urgency to go, and the frequent BMs go away, but it DOES go away as you heal. The first couple of days after surgery was more painful than I thought it would be, but the pain was managed better by day 3. I cannot believe how I feel now. It was totally worth it. You will be more tired than usual for weeks, so don't be surprised by that. This surgery is a big deal. I went back to work after 4 weeks. My story a week after surgery is here:

http://www.crohnsforum.com/showthread.php?t=44414

Please feel free to ask ANYTHING you may be wondering about. I am embarrassed about nothing, and have no problem putting it all on the table!
03-01-2013, 10:26 AM   #5
polar1920
 
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I had my bowel resection way back in 1993. I was in hospital a 6 days after surgery. Had someone at home for a week as my children were young then, but it was just resting and avoiding heavy lifting.
No lifting of the children, no hoovering and plenty of rest. Take the painkillers. I am sure techniques will have improved considerably since 1993.
Good luck to any of the posters having surgery soon xx
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03-01-2013, 10:30 AM   #6
hthompson631
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I had the same surgery on December 4th. I was out of the hospital 5 days later. I had my friends take my little dogs so they didn't jump on me. My partner had prepared to have the week off, but honestly, it wasn't needed. Yes, I was moving really slowly, but I was just in my reclining couch falling in and out of sleep, so I saw no point in him staying home to watch me rest. The main thing you need to avoid is LIFTING!! Do NOT lift your children for 8 weeks, or you will risk a hernia. I feel completely "normal" now. I did have keyhole surgery, but the incision was made a little larger since they had to take out more than they thought they would. It still is so amazing to me, and the scar looks better than I thought it would have even if they didn't have to make it bigger. I was very worried that I would have chronic diarrhea forever, but my stool is perfectly normal. They had expected to take 10cm of my terminal ileum, but had to take 20cm, so I was even more worried. It takes weeks for things to "settle in" until that urgency to go, and the frequent BMs go away, but it DOES go away as you heal. The first couple of days after surgery was more painful than I thought it would be, but the pain was managed better by day 3. I cannot believe how I feel now. It was totally worth it. You will be more tired than usual for weeks, so don't be surprised by that. This surgery is a big deal. I went back to work after 4 weeks. My story a week after surgery is here:

http://www.crohnsforum.com/showthread.php?t=44414

Please feel free to ask ANYTHING you may be wondering about. I am embarrassed about nothing, and have no problem putting it all on the table!

I read your post. Thank you very much for putting the link there. It was very informative. Again thank you!!
03-01-2013, 11:30 AM   #7
Angelzig
 
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Thanks so much! The Docs tell you all this 'stuff', but hearing from real people makes life so much better!

I feel like things have been so quick, great on one hand (less time in pain, less time worrying if everything I put in my mouth is going to put me in the hospital, less time to stress over the surgery). But I am a bit of a control freak and feel very unprepared.

Thanks again! xxxxx
03-01-2013, 03:20 PM   #8
mac
 
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I am in the hospital with my husband now actually and his doctor says that he will be able to do whatever he wants when we go home as long as he doesn't lift more than ten pounds. He had surgery on tuesday and is still here now we are hoping to go home saturday, but I personally feel like monday will be a better guess. He had a resection and illeostomy. We are just waiting for him to pass more waste into his bag at this point, but today is the first day he got solid food. Good luck on your surgery and bring extra clothes for a few days beyond what the doctor says is average just in case.
03-01-2013, 03:30 PM   #9
xxjemmamxx
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I had a right hemicolectomy to remove 14cm of bowel, open surgery. I was in hospital for 6 days and I didn't return to work until 8 weeks after (my wound re-opened which took 2 extra weeks to heal).

All I can say is take your time, get some support from someone else to do everything for you for the first week or two at the very least. Fingers crossed for keyhole surgery as the recovery is so much easier. Open surgery will completely wipe you out.

Best of luck
03-01-2013, 04:57 PM   #10
snowhite_dahlia
 
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Hi Angel, I hope your surgery is a success and relieves your symptoms!

I'm having my first Crohns-related surgery (removal of some my small intestine around the TI) on Tuesday actually, so I'll keep you in my thoughts! <3 My father works from home, so I'm lucky that he'll be around to help me out while I recover. One thing that I don't think has been mentioned yet is that you'll probably be restricted on driving - I was told by my surgeon that I wouldn't be able to drive for at least a week after (and once I'm off the painkillers.) Granted, you probably won't be wanting to go out a lot soon after your surgery, but just in case you need to make arrangements!

Again, good luck!!
03-01-2013, 10:05 PM   #11
Darmora
 
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Very similar story here. Had a horrible summer with severe blockage. GI sent me to surgeon Sept 20 and surgery scheduled Oct 4. He said the same thing lets avoid seeing you in emergency. In hospital for 6 days, took 22 inches of bowel including terminal ileum. Hoped for laporascopy but ended up keyhole. Didn't really need anyone looking after me at home. Moved slowly and slept a lot. Percocet was my best friend for awhile. Back to work Nov. 27th which in hindsight was a bit early. Mostly because of fatigue. ALOT of diarrhea after but eventually got sorted out. All the best to you. Like everything with crohns, you just deal with it!
03-03-2013, 06:09 AM   #12
Andrew k
 
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They say everyone is different. I had a bowel resection and a stomal hernia repair and a proctectomy on the 14th of December last year and went back to work in the middle of January. Was a bit uncomfortable at times but not to bad
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03-04-2013, 02:05 AM   #13
Kf1986
 
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Hi everyone i the surgery u re talking about a j pouch ? Im wantin some info about it ?
03-04-2013, 12:44 PM   #14
hthompson631
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Hi everyone i the surgery u re talking about a j pouch ? Im wantin some info about it ?
Mine is not. I'm having an Ileocolic resection. Sorry
03-07-2013, 02:53 PM   #15
leithcote
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I would bank on six to eight weeks post-surgery. I had my ileocolic / hemicolectomy a year ago, and grossly underestimated the amount of time for recovery - heading back to full-time work far too early! Looked and felt like a zombie... Take this opportunity (if you can) to fully rest and recuperate - easier said than done I know, but it *is* important for your long term health. Best of wishes.
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04-05-2013, 04:12 PM   #16
Angelzig
 
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Hi everyone!

I'm now 4 weeks post op. Surgery was ok, laproscopic (sp?) with hand assist so 2 little holes, 1 medium hole and 1 big (3 inch) hole. Post op infection which was awful and so painful! internal at resection site ouch! I was in hospital 5 days, but I was so glad to be home cos nursing care was appalling (refused pain relief, PCA broke down 25 hrs post op and no Pain relief for 3 hours, fluid retention, and a VERY uncomfortable CT scan).

So, now I'm home, kids are home life as normal right? well kind of! I'm really struggling with fatigue, doing very little which is hard with two bouncy boys. And I'm having awful stomach cramps and BM's 5-7 times a day, which are very uncomfortable (really soft but gassy and sore).

I know I needed the surgery and I do feel better in some ways-like I can eat solid food, bonus! But the fatigue is "killing me" at the moment. Any advice would be appreciated, and all the best to those of you who have just undergone/ soon to be having surgery XXX
04-05-2013, 04:51 PM   #17
Darmora
 
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So glad to hear surgery went well. Am I to assume you're on prednisone? If so, most of your problems will be over once you've weaned off. Also, once your bowel re learns how to function, your movements will decrease. My doctor put me on colestid which helped immensely! I did find fatigue my worst problem, it just took time and getting off prednisone. Good luck with everything.
04-05-2013, 04:59 PM   #18
Angelzig
 
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No, no pred!

No meds at all til I see my GI in June! (so it could all have gone to sh*t by then)

It's not very joined-up where I am, even though all the Dr's are at the same hospital!

Thanks for the reply X
04-05-2013, 05:03 PM   #19
sdexter
 
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I went back to work after 4 weeks. I was more tired, of course, but it is a desk job that I could leave mid-day to work from home. I guess I just got less and less fatigued each day, then one day I woke up and realized my energy level was back to normal. That was probably at 6 weeks or so, maybe a little longer. I wasn't on any medication at the time, though, as I had not had my follow-up with my gastro at that point, only with my surgeon. I didn't realize some people go on prednisone, post-op, and am really glad I was not one of them because I would have probably refused (again). I am just on Asacol now, along with some B-12 supplements. The gassy, urgent BM didn't last 4 weeks for me, though. Maybe it is time to revisit your gastro.
04-05-2013, 05:05 PM   #20
sdexter
 
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No, no pred!

No meds at all til I see my GI in June! (so it could all have gone to sh*t by then)

It's not very joined-up where I am, even though all the Dr's are at the same hospital!

Thanks for the reply X
June?? I think not!! That is a long time to "ride it out" when you may be able to get something to give you some relief.
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