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Incision not healing!!!!!

KierstenRx's picture
KierstenRx
Posts: 249
Joined: Nov 2006

Need to vent and need advice. Next week will be doing FOLFOX and Avastin round 7 of 8. I am really looking forward to being finished with chemo. My problem is I still have not healed entirely from my surgey on Feb 5th. I have an open hole about the diameter of a pencil at the bottom of incision under an abdominal fold. It has been discharging since surgery. I asked my onc if I Avastin would be safe to start due to that area not being closed up. He said I would be fine since they didn't start Avastin till 6 weeks post surgery. I have seen my surgeon twice about it. Both times he said it was not infected and is just being really slow to heal due to radiation, location under the fold, etc... Anyway about a week ago I started experiencing more pain then usual. Three days ago I had a foul greenish discharge. I called my surgeon and he put me on antibiotics and is going to see me first thing Tuesday morning. However, I am having serious pain (back on percocet and lortab). Last night I got a mirror to look at the incision and my hole is almost twice as big as it has been... I am starting to freak out. I have been positive throughout the past nine months, but this is getting on my nerves. Did anyone else have trouble getting totally healed up???? What did your doctors do??? Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

Kiersten

sladich's picture
sladich
Posts: 430
Joined: May 2007

Kiersten,

It definitely sounds like an infection. I'm surprised they are doing chemo with an open wound. I had a Heptatic Arterial Infusion pump in my abdomen that became infected and they removed it. The wound needed to heal from the inside out. It took 6 months and during that 6 months I was not allowed any chemo. Both my surgeon and oncologist said "NO CHEMO" until the wound is healed. Good luck!

Debbie

shmurciakova's picture
shmurciakova
Posts: 910
Joined: Dec 2002

Geez Kiersten,
Are your oncologist and surgeon on the same page? Have they been in contact with one another regarding this issue? When you go to see the surgeon on Tuesday please have him speak to the oncologist so that the two of them are working together on your treatment plan. I would think whether or not you can fight this infection during chemo depends on your blood counts. Also, if your counts are low that could have an effect on the rate at which your wound is healing (or not). I am a bit surprised they started your chemo with this wound but I suppose each patients case is different. Be your own advocate and speak up about it. Don't be afraid to make the final decision if you feel uncomfortable with what they are telling you. Certainly ask them what your blood work is showing.
Best wishes,
Susan

Patti1
Posts: 109
Joined: Feb 2006

Kiersten,
Sorry to see that you are having problems with your wound. Dennis also had a bad open wound at the bottom of his incision which was about 1 1/2 inches long by 1 inch wide.The 1st month we just could not get it to close, finally the visiting nurse had us wet dress it. You puff up some gauze and soak it in saline solution then squeeze out excess solution and cover the wound up. Then place dry gauze over and bandage it up.We changed this 3 times a day and within 6 weeks we got the wound to close. It is a very slow process but it works. Our visiting nurse was a wound care specialist. Will keep you in our prayers
Patti

levensweg
Posts: 55
Joined: Jul 2006

I had a nasty infection that started from almost day one of my resection recovery. they did have to open it up twice and a lot of irrigation, frequent gauze dressing was required. I think I can relate to your frustration. Mine took eight weeks to heal up and I was frustrated the whole time, but it did heal up.

-lev

levensweg
Posts: 55
Joined: Jul 2006

I had a nasty infection that started from almost day one of my resection recovery. they did have to open it up twice and a lot of irrigation, frequent gauze dressing was required. I think I can relate to your frustration. Mine took eight weeks to heal up and I was frustrated the whole time, but it did heal up.

-lev

Moesimo's picture
Moesimo
Posts: 1080
Joined: Aug 2003

After my last surgery, I had 2 holes in my incision. One of the areas had to be opened in the ER. It took about 5 mos. for both areas to heal. I packed them twice a day. I was not getting chemo at the time. I was also told that radiation slows healing.

I am surprised that your doc didnt want to see you or send you to the ER. If you get a fever or the drainage is worse, call your doc or go to ER.

Good luck, it will eventually close up.

Maureen

robinvan's picture
robinvan
Posts: 1014
Joined: May 2007

Hi Kiersten,
What a lousy way to spend the weekend!! Tuesday must seem like a long ways off. I had surgery on March 5 and began Avastin on April 26th, about 8 weeks. My incision was well healed by the time Chemo started. My surgeon said that Avastin does tend to slow the healing process, as does Chemo in general and radiation. The infection must be a great worry. I'm glad to hear you are on anti-biotics. I hope they're working. I haven't got much advice to add to what others have said. Keep an eye on your temperature.

I hope this is resolved to your satisfaction soon.
Hang in there!!

Rob

A spring thought...
"We have only begun to imagine the fullness of life.
How could we tire of hope? So much is in the bud."
Denise Levertov

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