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Abdominal Aches and Pains

ldot123's picture
ldot123
Posts: 276
Joined: Apr 2008

Hi Semi-Colons,

After reading a number of posts and so on in regard to gas courtesy of limey I wondered if there are other issues involved with abdominal discomfort. I had my surgery done with a laparoscope and I know they puff up the abdomen with a gas in order to see what they are doing. My understanding is that it takes some time for it to dissipate. I have read about adhesions as well. The pain I experience is not constant and seems to move about my abdomen. On a pain scale they are only about a 3 (out of 10) As I said the pain moves around-upper right quadrant, upper left, lower left. I wonder if this can still be due to the gas they pumped in or due to adhesions. It is just plain uncomfortable. I also have a small hernia from the surgery that does bother me. Not sure if this impacts things. Neither my onc. or surgeon seem to be concerned about these due to the fact that they come and go. Anybody out there having the same issues?

Cheers, Lance

krystiesq's picture
krystiesq
Posts: 242
Joined: Jun 2008

My mom has had aches and pains in her abdomen since her surgery last year and most prominently after a chemo treatment. It isn't the cancer just normal aches and pains to have after surgery. The fact that she is living with cancer makes everything a symptom.

Anonymous user (not verified)

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msccolon's picture
msccolon
Posts: 1956
Joined: Oct 2004

I feel you, Lance, and hope you are pain free soon. I only had pain from adhesions once, and it was during a particularly stupid decision to try Tae Bo Ultimate Abs/Butt workout! The twisting of the abdomen tore some adhesions and I was in quite a bit of pain and my intestines even shut down for a brief time! It healed up well enough and I decided it would be wise not to attempt such exercises in the future! I do get mysterious moving sharp pains after each Avastin treatment, and I chalk it up to spots where the Avastin is cutting off circulation to cancer attempting to organize in my abdomen. It ALWAYS goes away and it ALWAYS shows up consistently after each treatment. I worried about it when I first started getting Avastin, but after seeing it arise consistently after enough treatments (yea, I'm a little slow so it took quite a bit of showing up before I made the connection and stopped worrying), I stopped worrying about it. I DID, however, mention it to my onc as well as my onc nurses, just to be safe! Are you considering having the hernia repaired? I had an incisional hernia that got really large during a recurrence when my abdomen would fill with large amounts of fluid on a weekly basis. It was repaired when they reopened my abdomen to remove the tumors.
mary

ldot123's picture
ldot123
Posts: 276
Joined: Apr 2008

I notice some fluid at the hernia site. I happened to be poking around there and noticed a squishy sound. Was your fluid due to the hernia or to the recurrence?

Lance

msccolon's picture
msccolon
Posts: 1956
Joined: Oct 2004

due to recurrence, and it was LARGE volumes. I was getting 4L drained off every week just to make room in the abdomen to eat and pass stool. Doc said there was more in there, just wasn't able to get any more than the 4L because of the position of the tumor and other organs.
Mary

ldot123's picture
ldot123
Posts: 276
Joined: Apr 2008

Hi Mary,

I am trying to get an exercise program together with a trainer. I am going to ask my surgeon about what sort of level of training I should be doing. I asked him before and he said because it was a "small" hernia that I should be OK, just not to overdo it. The question is what is overdoing it. My trainer wants a letter from the surgeon because he tends to work on the core muscles (abs) during these workouts.

On the fluid side of things, I certainly don't have what you experienced. Seems minor in comparison but I will mention it to him anyway.

Thanks for your feedback! Lance

msccolon's picture
msccolon
Posts: 1956
Joined: Oct 2004

LOL! Dear personal trainer, please allow Lance to participate in your personal training workouts... My massage therapist actually required a note from my doc to allow deep tissue massage. I guess CYA is a natural reaction today!
Mary

KathiM's picture
KathiM
Posts: 8077
Joined: Aug 2005

So, remind me (because I'm a stupid chemo brain!) how long ago was your surgery? I know that the issues can go for a bit...

Are you eating 'gassy' stuff (as was discussed in Mark's post)? Try the BRAT diet (Banannas, Rice, Applesauce, Tea) for a day, see if the pain goes....I always use this diet to resettle my intestines after a fiercer battle with upsets.

The GOOD news, is that an obstruction (I've had 8...lol), in my experience doesn't move. That the pain moves is VERY good news, in fact, on that score....

After getting tired of trying to return to normal eating, I resigned myself to eating a modified IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) diet for awhile. You can Google this, and get all sorts of info...In a nutshell...very little red meat (hard to digest), little processed stuff (I 'sin' and get an In-N-Out burger every once in awhile), and I cut out dairy (lactose intollerant from the chemo treatments).

Oh, and for awhile after my surgery (laparotomy...laparoscope for one of my obstructions), I was signaled that I needed to find a bathroom by a sharp twinge in my belly.

Hugs, Kathi

ldot123's picture
ldot123
Posts: 276
Joined: Apr 2008

Thanks for the reply Kathi.

I had my surgery in February 2007. I will try the IBS diet. I am going to see a Gastro doc to talk about some of these issues and will report back.

And by the way, I relate to the chemo fog but that seems to be quite a bit clearer now.

Cheers, Lance

KathiM's picture
KathiM
Posts: 8077
Joined: Aug 2005

My last chemo was April, 2006...rofl....I STILL use the 'chemo brain' excuse...I'm 53 years young...it's better than blaming my age!!!!

There are so few perks with this disease, I'm holding onto this one.....lol!

Hugs, Kathi

msccolon's picture
msccolon
Posts: 1956
Joined: Oct 2004

GAHHHHH!!!!! Hairballs? ;) You are truly a trouper and I am sure a TRUE blessing to your patient partners!
Mary

changing2
Posts: 118
Joined: Jul 2008

Now that Mary mentioned it... I tried cutting down on my pain medication for my back but then noted abdominal pain...I was on Avastin then...hmmm... interesting!

KathiM's picture
KathiM
Posts: 8077
Joined: Aug 2005

I was lucky, the first one was the only one that needed surgery...I think I could have managed it, had I known what it was, but it was only 2 weeks after my BC lumpectomy, so I figured it had something to do with that....

I got a big laugh when I asked my breast surgeon about this....he said "Now Kathi, the last time I checked, (and I AM a doctor, after all), the breast is not connected to the colon!".

Hugs, Kathi

CherylHutch's picture
CherylHutch
Posts: 1399
Joined: Apr 2007

:::Hauling out my Anatomy 101 textbook:::

Hmmmm... by my calculations, I think your breast surgeon was correct, Kathi. It does appear that the breast is not connected to the colon, no matter which way you turn the body

Hugggggs,

Cheryl

dkill1
Posts: 6
Joined: Jul 2006

Lance,
I too, have this type of pain. Mine is mostly upperleft, upper right and lower right. Never all at the same time. It just moves around , as you say, and comes and goes. I'm thinking maybe some of it is related to my gallbladder.???? I also have back pain or spasms between my shoulder blades from time to time, and lower back pain. One day I will feel like crap and think "It's back" but the next day I will feel fine. Could it be that we have Canceritis? or is this the new norm?

Debbi

ldot123's picture
ldot123
Posts: 276
Joined: Apr 2008

Hi Debbi,

You sound like your are having exactly the same symptoms as me. I also get pains in the back specifically in the muscle area between the shoulder blades. I started get this when I start 5FU and Leucovorin. I think this pain is a holdover from that. The frustrating thing is that it does come and go. I will be feeling great one minute then kinda crappy in the space of an hour. I am hoping this will diminish over time. I am about a year and a half out from chemo. The doctors don't seem to pay much heed to this nor can they provide an explanation. I guess we wait and see and enjoy the good days to the fullest.

Stay positive! Lance

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