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So Glad to be Home

BillO60
Posts: 72
Joined: Mar 2015

Had surgery on August 13th which generally went well.  Removed CRC tumor, repaired 3 hernias that were caused by 2 surgeries I had 38 years ago. Now I'm the temporary owner of an ileostomy for the next 6 months or so which is like deja vu because I had one of those 38 years ago for 10 months for a different reason. It's still just as much fun to manage as I remember it, which means not at all.

Surgery lasted 8 1/2 hours partly because they had to do an abdominal reconstruction which, from the way they described it, required a lot of layering, aligning various muscles, fascia, etc. in order to make sure the small intestine (ileostomy) had a straight shot so there are no "kinks".   They also did a second anastomosis that corrected a kink caused by the surgeries I has 38 years ago.

The ironic part of that is that I've stayed away from red meat and pork for the past 3 years and part of the procedure used mesh made from pigs to hold everything in place.

So I now am part porker with an occassional odd craving for BBQ sauce.

Had a blockage that took a couple of weeks to clear so my 7 - 10 day stay turned into 31 days of one of the most mind numbing, boring, sleep deprived periods in my life.
I had a very conservative surgeon managing my case which extended my stay for an extra 2 weeks even after the blockage cleared because I was having too much output from the ileostomy and she was concerned I'd go home, get dehydrated and wind up back in the emergenct room. At her insistence I wound up with a PICC line and TPN (nutrition through the PICC line). After a week of that I finally insisted they discharge me because I was tired of being poked, prodded, waken up, starved, etc. Turns out I'm doing better at home than I was in the hospital.

So, I'm back and slowly recuperating.  Lots of gas and gas pain, fatigue, and drinking about 3 - 4 quarts of gatorade a day to keep from dehydrating. Appetite is coming back but everything I eat causes gas so I'm not rushing it.

There have been a few times I was able to inflate the ileostomy bag enough that I swear I felt like I was being lifted off the chair (okay, slight exaggeration.)

On the plus side, after the last 5 months of chemo/radiation/surgery (with the intermittent breaks to heal) I've gone from a size 44 jeans to a 38. I don't think I've been that size since I was in my 20's. But, somehow I doubt that will last for long unless upcoming chemo decreases my appetite,
Next on the menu is mop up chemo for 6 months, figuring out what they are going to do about a 1 cm lesion on my liver, and in about 6 months surgery to rehook up my colon. What's weired about the liver lesion is that no one seems especially concerned and I havent seen anyone from oncology since I went though the chemo/radiation a few months ago.  But I'm going to keep bugging them until I get an answer.

But I am sooo glad to be home. First thing I did was take a shower (I had too many things attached to me in the hospital and only got sponge baths which are nowhere close to being as much fun as they sound or are portrayed in movies and TV)

Bil

Trubrit's picture
Trubrit
Posts: 4856
Joined: Jan 2013

It is good to hear that you have your sense of humour intact. You have been through the mill for sure, and I am sorry to read your list of woes. It has obviously been a hard ride. 

I hope you will continue to heal and that your upcoming mop up chemo will not be too hard on you. 

Be sure to come visit us here and we will support you through this next step.

Sue - Trubrit

 

vtspa6
Posts: 172
Joined: Aug 2015

Sorry to hear all you went thru but glad you are home.  Now everytime I eat any pork I will be thinking of you!

lizard44's picture
lizard44
Posts: 409
Joined: Apr 2015

and as Sue said, with sense of humor intact Smile I enjoyed the comment about your pig mesh;  I often wonder how many Heparin flushes it will take before I begin to oink Cool Hoping your recovery at home goes well.

Grace

danker
Posts: 1188
Joined: Apr 2012

There is nothing like a shower in your own bathroom is there? Glad you are home and doing well!!

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