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leaking after reconstructive surgery

billysaunt
Posts: 3
Joined: Mar 2004

Hi. I haven't been here for a while since things were going great for my nephew. Here is a recap: my nephew is 25 years old, grew up with colitis, diagnosed with colon cancer in March. Had an iliostomy (sp?) and has since undergone chemo. He was doing great- no effects from the chemo., had rapidly regained his weight lost in the hospital, quickly came to terms with the ostomy bag, etc. Two weeks ago he had surgery to reconstruct things for the eventual reversal of the ostomy. He had a setback in the hospital when they had to reopen him to take care of some bleeding. He has since been released and the problems have escalated. He is unable to urinate normally (he had a catheter reinserted but that has since been removed and things still aren't flowing well:)) and he has begun leaking from his rectum. He is mortified and depressed. He was totally unprepared for this-no warning whatsoever. He said today that he would have rathered to have worn "the bag" for the rest of his life than go through this humiliation. Has anyone else had this problem? If so, does it self-correct once your body realizes things are getting back to normal. Are there any exercises one can do to strengthen those muscles or will he have to suffer with this forever. I would appreciate any reply. Thank you.

johnom's picture
johnom
Posts: 86
Joined: Jul 2004

Hi there. Your nephew is going through the tough times right now. I suspect a whole lot of us have had "leaking" problems of some sort. I know I did, and even still do 7 months post-op, or "stop-poop" as I sometimes say while sitting on the throne musing.
I had success taking metamucil in the evening to firm things up in there. It takes quite a while to re-train your bowel however. I am told, and firmly believe, it does eventually fix itself so that life can go on. He (and we) will never be the same again, but it won't take over and control his life like he now feels it has. The kinds of food he eats, when he eats, how he eats, the fiber therapy are all important steps to gaining contol. Tell him to hang in there and let everyone know when he sees some normalcy returning. It DOES happen, but not this soon.

littlejulie's picture
littlejulie
Posts: 311
Joined: Mar 2004

Hi Billysaunt,
My mother is 5 1/2 months post op and she still has leaking issue. It did get alot better when she was of chemop for a bit. Being on chemo the past two weeks she has had some accidents - it's not easy. day by day and eventually I'm sure it'll all get better. tell him to hang in there. My mother gets better every day.

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