illiostomy reversal

3greatkids Member Posts: 45
edited March 2014 in Colorectal Cancer #1
Hello all,
Mike is scheduled to have his illiostomy reversed at the beginning of July, as he will have had his last round of chemo (Ya hoo) in May. He has had the illiostomy since Oct. 05. We have heard good and bad on what to expect from the drs. Can anyone help us out a bit? Should we expect it to take awhile for his bowels to start working properly again? He is planning on taking the month of July off of work, to try and get things working again. We are hoping someone out there can give us some insight on what to expect.
Sylvia and Mike :]


  • fedester
    fedester Member Posts: 753 Member
    hi sylvia and mike,
    good to hear you are having a reversal.
    i had mine in sept 05. first you will be in hospital until you ca pass gas. it was about 2-3 days for me. went home and had an accident i believe the next day, mike if you feel you are going to pass gas , please get to the bathroom that's why i had an accident i thought it was just gas butt no. bm's are loose for about 2-3 times than when you get more food they get firmer. if you go to shaz's ostomomy page there is a forum for people who have had a reversal and problems they have encountered,i think it is titled back to origional plumbing.
    except for that 1 time i really didn't have any problems.
    there is 1 thing else, you will be prone to hernias because your ads are really weak after several surgeries and mine were i am going for another surgery for hernia the 2nd time. so be careful and don't lift for a while.
    i hope this has helped good luck
    hope you do well with recovery
    all the best
  • RonWatt
    RonWatt Member Posts: 12
    Good morning Sylvia and Mike,
    I had my reversal done this last Jan.So I hope I can shed some light on this for you.First of all the surgery is very simple with just a small amount of discomfert.You again ,just like your first surgery will have a limited diet that improves about every day.And of course lots of walking.I struggled to have a bowel movement in the hospital and could only manage small amounts. I had the sensation that I had to go quite a bit of the time.This gets way better.I was only hospitalized for three days.The plane ride home was spent pretty much in the bathroom of the plane.I was scared to death that I would have an accident.Once at home and in my own bed I slept so hard that guess what the accident happened and it wasn't pretty.But that was the only one I've had.The clinic had told me to take metamusil and immodium in certain amounts,and that I would have to adjust this.Be cautious with this. I went from incontinence to constipation and back a couple of times.To do it again I would start with small amounts.But everyone is different.I felt like I was living on the toilet for the first two weeks and was afraid to venture to far from home.The Mayo had said to expect four b.m.'s a day with one at night.Well I was going about elevin and was starting to think I had made a mistake.But Mike, things got way better.I now have two to three b.m.'s a day.One in the morning and maybe two at night.Very rarely do I have to get up and go at night.I'm able to pass gas without to much worry,and we guys like to pass gas.The only thing that I struggle with right now is my evening routine seems to come at dinner time.Going to work or fishing or any other activity hasn't been a problem.Taking the month off is a good idea.Thats what I did and it was enough time to get things under control.I don't know how much rectum you have left Mike, mine is about half of normal.And thats one thing to remember is were not going to have normal b.m.'s like we used to,but I'll tell you what it's damn close and beats the hell out of the bag.If your rectums intact,you might not notice any difference at all.Well I've rambled on long enough.I will have you in my prayers.Just be patient and it will work out fine for you I'm sure.Oh there is one thing,when you get the urge to go don't wait to long.

    You'll be glad you did it Mike,
  • KathiM
    KathiM Member Posts: 8,028 Member
    Yay Yay Yay Yay!!!!

    I never had a "stomy", but the symptoms described here, I have had. I had my complete rectum removed, along with the sigmoid colon. New rectum made from part of the remaining colon. This was May 05.
    I am just really careful about where I am when I eat. If it is going to be a problem, I know within 1/2 hour. THEN I can make it to a bathroom.
    Remember, his 'plumbing' hasn't been used in awhile, so take it slow. He will figure out what foods make loose/tighter stool. I acted like I had IBS for the first 3 months. I didn't take immodium except when ABSOLUTELY necessary...could never get the dose right...but THAT IS ME!!! (I'm just a sensative gal, sniff).

    Congrats on the end (sorry) of your journey, guys, BIG HUGS from me!!!
  • lfondots63
    lfondots63 Member Posts: 818 Member
    Hi Sylvia and Mike!

    I want to say congrats to Mike. Like others said it will be a journey to get back to normal but I'm sure he will be so relieved to get rid of the bag. My mother-in-law had an ileostomy bag and was reversed. She still has to watch what she eats but she had a lot of bowel and ileostomy taken out. You just listen to your body. Take care.

  • cal79
    cal79 Member Posts: 57
    I had my ileostomy reversal in November after having a j-pouch formed with TME and stapled directly to the anus. The biggest surprise for me was total lack of pain after the surgery - the initial j-pouch procedure was awful, but the day after the reversal I was off pain meds. I have had no accidents at all, and my biggest problems were bloating, constipation and a burning bum, all of which were manageable. I now have completely normal bowel function as long as I keep my diet high enough in fibre.

    My reccommendations would be to have a wheat bag for any bloating or discomfort, baby wipes to stop anal irritation, and a barrier cream in case it gets irritated anyway (I love calmoseptine). It took a while for me to work up to fibre in my diet, which I think a lot of people find. Hot drinks were an absolute saviour in helping move things along.

    Good luck with the procedure, it's well worth it!

    Cal :)
  • StacyGleaso
    StacyGleaso Member Posts: 1,233 Member
    Hey guys,

    I had my reversal done 9 months after my surgery. The doc said to expect changes for up to 36 months. I had no problems from day one. Everything was just like it always was. Can't explain it. Now, just close to 5 yrs, still no problems. Experiment with various foods to determine their affect on you prior to diving in head first.

    Congrats on your progress!!!!!!!!!