Need to vent, bowel issues

carol2dogs
carol2dogs Member Posts: 132
edited March 2014 in Ovarian Cancer #1
This is a topic you can't really discuss elsewhere. I am on my 4th recurrence, and thought I was having ascites and fluid build-up. I requested a paracentesis, since I have had them before and they are wonderful. Well, it wasn't fluid at all, but backed-up poop. My PA told me I was backed up, up to my neck. There appears to be a narrowing of my lower bowels, so stuff was getting stuck in the wider part. Anyway, I've been working hard at taking laxatives and getting exercise, and I am definitely making progress. But it has absolutely not been a fun process!! Just needed to vent a little.
Love and teal hugs,Carol.

Comments

  • mopar
    mopar Member Posts: 1,972 Member
    VENTING IS GOOD!
    So sorry to hear, Carol. No problem venting on this website - anytime! Glad to hear things are moving along and you are getting better. I know it's not a fun process at all. Keep us up-to-date. I hope you can enjoy the rest of the Christmas/New Year holiday!

    (((HUGS)))
    Monika
  • nanapam
    nanapam Member Posts: 8
    i wonder too
    I have just had a good CT scan, but since then have noticed feeling constipated, having to push harder than normal for bowel movements. I wonder if I might have a narrowing? The doctor did feel a nodule at the last recto-vaginal exam, and will check me again in February. I guess I have to wait and see, but still wonder. Hope you come through well just like you have 3 previous times! way to go!
  • kayandok
    kayandok Member Posts: 1,202
    constipation
    Hi Carol, good to hear from you. I was wondering how your were doing. Glad to hear you do not have ascites! Poop is not always easy to deal with though once it is built up. I got impacted one time (after surgery) and had to go in to have it physically removed by my surgeon. NOT fun. I am ever so careful now, since that experience to keep things moving. I use magnesium daily and also laxatives once in a while.
    Wishing you the best with getting it all flowing!
    kathleen
  • nancy591
    nancy591 Member Posts: 1,027 Member
    wow
    What symptoms did you have? I've been having vauge bowel pain for weeks now. Not the colicky pain like an obstuction but vague diffuse pain throughout the abdomen. My CT a week ago showed no dilation of the colon and no obsruction. Were you having regular bowel movements?
  • Mwee
    Mwee Member Posts: 1,338
    yup... that is NOT easy
    I can totally relate to this discussion. I have tried everything I can think of to keep the constipation from happening after chemo treatments, but nothing works. It makes my life miserable. Colase has become my good buddy :)
    (((HUGS))) Maria
  • carol2dogs
    carol2dogs Member Posts: 132
    nancy591 said:

    wow
    What symptoms did you have? I've been having vauge bowel pain for weeks now. Not the colicky pain like an obstuction but vague diffuse pain throughout the abdomen. My CT a week ago showed no dilation of the colon and no obsruction. Were you having regular bowel movements?

    symptoms
    Nancy,
    My symptoms were primarily lots of bloating and distension. That's why I thought I had fluid. I was on Hexalen and taking 4 stimulant laxative pills a day, so I was having plenty of bowel movements. I guess I just wasn't getting enough volume. They found the problem with X-rays of my abdomen. Thanks. It's so nice to hear from people who really understand!
    Carol
  • carol2dogs
    carol2dogs Member Posts: 132
    kayandok said:

    constipation
    Hi Carol, good to hear from you. I was wondering how your were doing. Glad to hear you do not have ascites! Poop is not always easy to deal with though once it is built up. I got impacted one time (after surgery) and had to go in to have it physically removed by my surgeon. NOT fun. I am ever so careful now, since that experience to keep things moving. I use magnesium daily and also laxatives once in a while.
    Wishing you the best with getting it all flowing!
    kathleen

    Thanks
    Kathleen,
    Thanks so much! I had not been posting just because of my teacher workload. Can you tell me more about the magnesium? Like how much, where do you find it, do you need a prescription?
    I'll try just about anything. Thanks.
    Love and teal hugs, Carol
  • carol2dogs
    carol2dogs Member Posts: 132
    Mwee said:

    yup... that is NOT easy
    I can totally relate to this discussion. I have tried everything I can think of to keep the constipation from happening after chemo treatments, but nothing works. It makes my life miserable. Colase has become my good buddy :)
    (((HUGS))) Maria

    Amen
    Maria,
    Thanks so much. You are so right about the miserable part, and you can't just tell your friends very easily. I am also taking the stool softeners (Wal-Mart's version of colace).
    Love and teal hugs, Carol
  • nancy591
    nancy591 Member Posts: 1,027 Member

    Thanks
    Kathleen,
    Thanks so much! I had not been posting just because of my teacher workload. Can you tell me more about the magnesium? Like how much, where do you find it, do you need a prescription?
    I'll try just about anything. Thanks.
    Love and teal hugs, Carol

    Magnesium
    I take magnesium too. I take it for chronic low magnesium level but it has a natural laxative effect. I usually have chronic diarrhea so if I am going to much the magnesium is the first thing I back off of. I was prescribed magnesium oxide. I have a hard time finding that over the counter though. I now just take regular magnesium supplements 250mg. I usually take one after lunch and one after dinner.
  • Tina Brown
    Tina Brown Member Posts: 1,036 Member

    symptoms
    Nancy,
    My symptoms were primarily lots of bloating and distension. That's why I thought I had fluid. I was on Hexalen and taking 4 stimulant laxative pills a day, so I was having plenty of bowel movements. I guess I just wasn't getting enough volume. They found the problem with X-rays of my abdomen. Thanks. It's so nice to hear from people who really understand!
    Carol

    Hi Carol
    I can totally relate to your post. For the last few months (just before I went back onto chemo) I was having very strange bowel movements. I had an urge to pass a stool and when I got to the toilet there was nothing. Also I was really bloated and distended and I thought I had ascites. Sometimes I needed to pass wind and would be unable to prevent soiling myself slightly. When I did go to the toilet I would only pass small soft blobs and would never feel like I had emptied my bowel completely. Sometimes if I needed to pass wind or go to the toilet I would only pass clear, odourless mucos. I too used to get tummy pains and cramping.

    I asked my oncologist what was happening and she said it may be the cancer cells on the outside of my bowel pressing. It felt like a partial obstruction. However after 6 or 7 weeks (3 of those I have been back on chemo) my bowel has returned to normal and it is a wonderful feeling because my bloating and distention has completely gone.

    I too had an x-ray, an ultra-sound and a CT of my abdomen and all 3 showed that everything was NORMAL!!!!!!!!

    Therefore I have come to the conclusion that:

    1. I may have had some cancer cells pressing on my internal organs that have now gone due to the chemo.

    2. My syptoms were all IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) related as I was very very worried and stressed and now I am back on treatment my worry has lessened. Thus the IBS has gone.

    I hope my experiences have helped you to understand. The internal workings of our bodies are both amazing and mysterious. Tina xx
  • jloe
    jloe Member Posts: 174

    Amen
    Maria,
    Thanks so much. You are so right about the miserable part, and you can't just tell your friends very easily. I am also taking the stool softeners (Wal-Mart's version of colace).
    Love and teal hugs, Carol

    One of my worst side effects
    I always had this problem because of the anti-nausea meds and then a real disaster after I had bowel surgery. After the bowel surgery I was horrified that a I was going to have to live on laxitives. I went to a very good gastroenterologist and switched my anti-nausea meds to Reglin (spelling). That REALLY helped and did not seem to cause a problem at all. He also put me on a daily herbal tea called "Smooth Move" (brand). It is senna tea and you can drink it everyday and it will not have the long term side effects of laxitives. I drank one cup in the morning for several months until my system started to have some normal activity after the surgery and I no longer need to drink it. The colace did nothing for me so this was a blessing. Good luck and I hope this can help.

    J.
  • kayandok
    kayandok Member Posts: 1,202

    Thanks
    Kathleen,
    Thanks so much! I had not been posting just because of my teacher workload. Can you tell me more about the magnesium? Like how much, where do you find it, do you need a prescription?
    I'll try just about anything. Thanks.
    Love and teal hugs, Carol

    Magnisium
    Carol, I get it from my doctor and it might actually be what Nancy mentioned, the oxide. It is actually a bowel softner with magnesium in it I think, I have to research.I can't seem to find the ENglish for the Japanese word. I am going to the doctor today, so will ask about it and get back to you. I take it one with every meal (it is quite mild) and up to 4 if things are plugged, before I actually use the lax. Works very naturally. I think it is very similar to your collace, although I used that a few times while in the States and didn't like it.

    Last I rememer you did cisplatin and something and then went into remission? Can you give us a quick update. I am so amazed that you have continued your teaching job through out all your chemo. You are a fighter, Carol.

    Hugs,
    Kathleen
  • carol2dogs
    carol2dogs Member Posts: 132
    kayandok said:

    Magnisium
    Carol, I get it from my doctor and it might actually be what Nancy mentioned, the oxide. It is actually a bowel softner with magnesium in it I think, I have to research.I can't seem to find the ENglish for the Japanese word. I am going to the doctor today, so will ask about it and get back to you. I take it one with every meal (it is quite mild) and up to 4 if things are plugged, before I actually use the lax. Works very naturally. I think it is very similar to your collace, although I used that a few times while in the States and didn't like it.

    Last I rememer you did cisplatin and something and then went into remission? Can you give us a quick update. I am so amazed that you have continued your teaching job through out all your chemo. You are a fighter, Carol.

    Hugs,
    Kathleen

    Quick update
    Kathleen,
    Thanks so much. I had been on cisplatin and gemzar, then had about 9 months of remission. My doc put me on Hexalen orally, but I told him I won't take that anymore after 14 days of nausea and constipation. To be honest, I also miss the camaraderie of the infusion room (I live alone/with my 2 dogs). I have an appt. 1/3 to find out what chemo he wants to try next. As for the teaching job, I'm certainly enjoying my break! My school day hours are very long.
    Thanks and teal hugs, Carol.
  • kayandok
    kayandok Member Posts: 1,202

    Thanks
    Kathleen,
    Thanks so much! I had not been posting just because of my teacher workload. Can you tell me more about the magnesium? Like how much, where do you find it, do you need a prescription?
    I'll try just about anything. Thanks.
    Love and teal hugs, Carol

    magnesuim oxide
    Hi again, I take 250mg of magnisum oxide, one with each meal faithfully, unless things are hard or not flowing. THen I incresase slowly. When thre is no BM that day (constipation), I use increase to 4 at night. If there is not flow the next day I will then use a lower dose laxative and find the laxative is more gentle) I thnk it is very similar to the way one uses the collace, although I don't prefer the collace at all.

    It has been trial and error for me, and with so many surgeries and chemo's behind me, I'm becoming an expert on my bowels, so to speak. I think the key is paying attention to what goes in and how and when it comes out. It is second nature now, but such a pain in the beginning.

    THe funny thing is that this culture is very much into talking aobut your "ben" BM. I had to fill out deatailed forms for my kids when they entered pre-school and elementary school. On the day before school trips, along wih taking their temps at night and that mornign, we have to submit a BM (ben reprot). It is also not a regular question at every/any doc appointment and not a taboo subject among frineds. It would be like saying, "How many cups of coffee did you drink today?" Very odd, but once you get used to it, it is quite natural. So much for your little cultural tidbit.

    Take care of that ben and keep it going!

    Kathleen❤

    PS During chemo (I'm taking a 6 week break right now) I have a completely different routine and take laxatives (usually 4 the first two days and taper down) from the first day (with the magnesium). THey clog me up immediately. So, again we are all different, and have to pay attention. When I excersise regularly too, there is a huge difference, which is obvious, but thought I would mention that.

    PPS I also wanted to mention that i take a good pro-biotic every day, three times a day, I get from my doctor. With keeping all the stuff moving, you can loose all the good bacteria too. When I have lot's of gas, I always take more, and that settles it right down.

    Sorry, a bit rambly, but home something is helpful.
  • carol2dogs
    carol2dogs Member Posts: 132

    Hi Carol
    I can totally relate to your post. For the last few months (just before I went back onto chemo) I was having very strange bowel movements. I had an urge to pass a stool and when I got to the toilet there was nothing. Also I was really bloated and distended and I thought I had ascites. Sometimes I needed to pass wind and would be unable to prevent soiling myself slightly. When I did go to the toilet I would only pass small soft blobs and would never feel like I had emptied my bowel completely. Sometimes if I needed to pass wind or go to the toilet I would only pass clear, odourless mucos. I too used to get tummy pains and cramping.

    I asked my oncologist what was happening and she said it may be the cancer cells on the outside of my bowel pressing. It felt like a partial obstruction. However after 6 or 7 weeks (3 of those I have been back on chemo) my bowel has returned to normal and it is a wonderful feeling because my bloating and distention has completely gone.

    I too had an x-ray, an ultra-sound and a CT of my abdomen and all 3 showed that everything was NORMAL!!!!!!!!

    Therefore I have come to the conclusion that:

    1. I may have had some cancer cells pressing on my internal organs that have now gone due to the chemo.

    2. My syptoms were all IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) related as I was very very worried and stressed and now I am back on treatment my worry has lessened. Thus the IBS has gone.

    I hope my experiences have helped you to understand. The internal workings of our bodies are both amazing and mysterious. Tina xx

    Thank you so much!
    Tina,
    Thanks so much for your reply. It is unbelievably helpful to hear from someone with nearly identical symptoms. I feel validated and not alone. This is exactly what I needed. Bless you.
    Love and teal hugs, Carol.