CSN Login
Members Online: 2

You are here

Coronavirus/COVID-19

What cancer patients, their families, and caregivers need to know about COVID-19.

First Surgery to Colon

Ugur
Posts: 62
Joined: Mar 2018

As some of you know I am fighting stage 4 CRC only for a month.

I had my two rounds of Folfox, but due to some complications I will have to go for surgery to remove the main tumor from colon.

The main tumor is not that big, it is 20 cm inside of the colon and they will remove around 8-10 cm of the large intestine. Probably I won't have colostomy, but it depends how the surgery will go on.

Hereby, I wanted to ask what should I expect, how long the recovery takes, what to do for a fast recovery, what to do to prevent liver mets to grow without chemo and many more questions in my mind.

Looking forward to your suggestions and guidance before my first surgery. 

Kindly,
Uğur

Trubrit's picture
Trubrit
Posts: 5083
Joined: Jan 2013

Once you get the OK from your surgeon, probably the same day, walk as much as you can.  Its hard getting out of the bed, pulling on the incision and all, but oh, it is so worth it.  It will get the blood flowing, the brain working, and most importantly, the bowel moving. 

I know that I had to stay in the hospital until I had had a good couple of bowel movements or even food. 

Grab your IV pole and move. 

I wish you all the luck on Thrusday. 

tru

SandiaBuddy's picture
SandiaBuddy
Posts: 1031
Joined: Apr 2017

Trubrit has it.  I was up and walking the day of the surgery.  Bring along a bathrobe and some slippers (those hospital gowns are awful for walking).  Ask your doctor about cimetadine after you recover a bit.  Exercise and vitamin D (sunshine) are great for healing.  One challenge I faced was getting in and out of bed when I got home.  If you do not have anyone to assist you, there is a great youtube video about using a flat sheet as an assistance device.  There are countless postings about alternatives and supplements to chemotherapy. Best of luck to you.

avargov
Posts: 19
Joined: Feb 2018

They forced me to walk 3 times a day after my colectomy.  They took about half of mine, but, fortunately it was at the cecum, and the surgeon was able to put everything back together.  

Took about 2 months for me to feel "normal" again, but stupidly, I started a new job 2 weeks after.  Still had the staples in and was driving 600 miles a day and unloading eggs.  Not the brightest thing I have ever done.

But yes, walk, walk, walk.  It does wonders.  And hang in there, it does get better!!!!

Alan

Woodytele
Posts: 163
Joined: Apr 2017

the hospital will probably force you to walk.  It will be tough to get out of bed, etc... you will get stronger everyday, but the first couple days you will feel it. 

Lily Flower's picture
Lily Flower
Posts: 253
Joined: Jul 2017

Did you have your surgery already, Ugur? Once you had your surgery, like everyone above said, definitely walk. You will be very sore and the first day will be very hard to even get out of the bed. Don't try to do it on your own, have someone to hold on to you and assist you. Another thing very hard to avoid is sneezing and coughing. Try to hug a pillow if you have to cough or sneeze. Hope a quick recovery for you!

SandiaBuddy's picture
SandiaBuddy
Posts: 1031
Joined: Apr 2017

Yes, I forgot about the pillow technique, it really helps.  Also, it hurt like heck when I laughed after surgery, which made it hard to be cheerful.

Ugur
Posts: 62
Joined: Mar 2018

The surgery had been successful, and I'm at intensive care unit since Thursday. 
As you all told me, doctors and nurses make me stand up and walk a little everyday. 
I wish I could say every day I'm getting better, but unfortunately today I feel all fatigue and had to vomit in the morning. 
Please tell me this will end soon, and I'll be back home. 
I feel so tired.

Ruthmomto4's picture
Ruthmomto4
Posts: 656
Joined: May 2013

i hope that you begin to feel better soon, and are home within  a few days. Thinking of you!!

BRHMichigan's picture
BRHMichigan
Posts: 368
Joined: Jul 2017

Took me awhile to regain anything close to some strength. My hospital stay was 7 days total. Just inch forward the best you can. I remember seeing the surgeon and his team. They reminded me just how much the procedure involved. He described it as rearranging and bruising me internally. Rest and walk as far as you can. Have you had many visitors? I enjoyed seeing people. I also felt a profound joy every morning I woke up. Grateful to be alive. Godspeed! You can do this. It just takes time. 

SandiaBuddy's picture
SandiaBuddy
Posts: 1031
Joined: Apr 2017

Nothing beats going home.  It can be a great motivator to get out of the hospital.  Keep pushing your doctors to let you know what you need to do to get released.  I hope you will be home soon.

Woodytele
Posts: 163
Joined: Apr 2017

be patient, it’s major surgery, you will get stronger. God be with you, god bless. 

kyolcu
Posts: 112
Joined: Jun 2017

I am glad you are fine and out of surgery. I hope everything will be better for you and for all of us. 

Annabelle41415's picture
Annabelle41415
Posts: 6412
Joined: Feb 2009

Like others have stated, just walk.  It might hurt to get up and move, but just do it.  As far as recovery it all depends on you, your weight, determination, physical and mental attitude and just wanting to get better and move on.  The more you push to get your life back to normal, the easier you will handle recovery.  Wishing you the best.

Kim

Ugur
Posts: 62
Joined: Mar 2018

Yeah, it has been 5 total days in intensive care, and I can't say it is going easy.

Anyway, no whining. The worst enemy here is time. Time flows so slow that sometimes I stare at the wall-clock to kill the time.

First days were really hard on me. Second day after surgery on Saturday, I had too much vomit that they had to put NG tube from my nose till stomach. So far, that was the worst day here for me.

3rd day I was really alright. Although I hate this NG tubes, I must admit that they help to stomach a lot with releasing gases and upsetting fluids. So I was feeling much better and I needed to go to toilet very often that my nurses are not happy to plug me in and out 10-12 times a day including the night. During this time I had to walk to toilet and back, so it was a good exercise too.

Yesterday, they unplugged all the pipes/tubes from my body and I was so relieved. They also started to  feed me with soft and liquid food slowly. However, during yesterday I started to feel nausea slowly. Before evening I had vomit again. I threw out most of the stuff I ate during the day. It wasn't much, but anyway I had not eaten much either. It seems like, my stomach doesn't want to work much. After vomiting, they put the NG tube again. But, since then I feel great. No nausea, no fatigue.

Today, I had a small shower and it was relaxing. I didn't have to run for toilet even once, interestingly. I have eaten one small mashed apple. As last, they closed the NG tube to see if my stomach will cooperate today.

I miss home madly. Due to complication during my last chemo, I had to stay at hospital unexpectedly long. Almost for two weeks I have been staying at hospitals without getting home. Luckily, they let me see my wife every day for couple of hours, those are the only pleasant hours.

Sleeping is another issue that I am with 3 hours of sleeping everyday. I just can't sleep, especially with this tube going out of my nose, it is really impossible to have a nice long sleep, even in the nights.

Sorry for long entry, I just wanted to update here briefly.

I keep my strong and positive attitude as much as I can, and I am wishing my liver mets to stay less aggressive till next chemo. I guess I will miss 2 weeks from my chemo schedule.

Please write me all your ideas about my situation.

Thanks very much to every and each of you for your kind messages.

And BTW, how long do you guys think I will have to stay hospitalized more?

I'll keep here updated if anything new comes up

Ugur

abrub's picture
abrub
Posts: 2128
Joined: Mar 2010

I took Ambien nightly in the hospital because I couldn't sleep without it.  Ask for sleeping meds.

Ugur
Posts: 62
Joined: Mar 2018

I already asked couple of times but they don't want to give me sleeping meds because of the other medications and it may upset my stomach. 
But thanks for the tip!

BRHMichigan's picture
BRHMichigan
Posts: 368
Joined: Jul 2017

Your experience sounds traumatic, but promising that you're experiencing some relief recently. Being able to walk to the bathroom and enjoy a shower... amazing what those small victories can do for your spirit. I sure hope they can figure out what's causing the vomiting soon. Or maybe it has subsided? Just know you have all of us thinking about and praying for you. Will be so great when you go home. I have aggressive liver mets too. It can cause loads of anxiety on top of everything else you're dealing with physically. Hang in and stay as strong as you can.

Ugur
Posts: 62
Joined: Mar 2018

Yeah, this period is not easy on me but I'm not broken yet :)

Thank you for all your kind wishes, I hope and wish that we all are going to get over this soon.

Annabelle41415's picture
Annabelle41415
Posts: 6412
Joined: Feb 2009

Ahhh yes the sleeping medication.  They should have already suggested that.  As far as eating, that is a doctor's choice whether he will give it to you or not.  My doctor wouldn't let me have any food until after 5 days after surgery and then the next day they released me.  They gave me an ileostomy so they wouldn't let me go until that was working which took five days.  I'm hoping that you get to go home soon.  Thanks for the update.

Kim

JanJan63's picture
JanJan63
Posts: 2482
Joined: Sep 2014

I'm sorry it's turned out to be so miserable. NG tubes are just AWFUL. I feel so bad for you. I've refused them a couple of times because they're so horrible. I bet in a few days you'll suddenly improve a lot. Have they checked to see if you have an abcess anywhere? I had my surgery and things went well and I went home and then was back in the hospital with an abcess in two days. I was throwing up over and over and really sick in general. I hope it isn't for you, I hope you're home and relaxing very soon.

Jan

Ugur
Posts: 62
Joined: Mar 2018

Hi Jan,

No, they have not checked for abcess so far as I can tell, however I am no doctor. But I can tell from what I experienced, it seems these are usual complications. The doctors and nurses are telling the same. Not the things we want to have, but these symptoms may happen to anyone after such surgery as we're told.

I also hate NG tubes, the first day I tried to convince nurses that it is impossible that I would stand with it one hour. I had it two and half day. Then they removed the first one but I vomited again yesterday, so I had twice. This second one is not necessary ,to be honest. It hasn't drained one drop of any liquid so far. But I realized that when I have the tube, I don't feel like a full balloon. I guess it helps to my stomach with the unwanted gass, so I am going to stand it till I get in better shape. I'm no quiter.

Thanks again for your kind message

abrub's picture
abrub
Posts: 2128
Joined: Mar 2010

And fought it constantly.  But it probably saved my life.

Alice

Ugur
Posts: 62
Joined: Mar 2018

Today generally I was ok but before evening again I got bit worse. Nothing major, but feeling dizzy and need to go to toilet every 15-20 mins.

I guess this will continue for a while. We will see what comes next.

Trubrit's picture
Trubrit
Posts: 5083
Joined: Jan 2013

You make your posts just as long as you want, because that is why the forum is here. It is teraputic to unload, so go ahead, and do it. 

I am so sorry for the trials you are experiencing. It all sounds rather awful; and I hope it gets better really soon. 

I know one day you'll look back on this, because it will be in the past, but right now it is happening, and you are entitled to feel wearied by it. 

Here's to improvement, and soon. 

Tru

Ugur
Posts: 62
Joined: Mar 2018

Very good point and thank you for comforting me about long posts.

I just want to share my story to the people who can understand me the best.

Thanks again Tru :)

Ugur
Posts: 62
Joined: Mar 2018

Hey everyone,

I am doing well and I left intensive care unit finally. 
I must tell that I had missed the feeling of going to wherever I want when I need.

I am having some soft diet. The stool is still only water-like, but I hope I will soon start to have normal toilet experiences :)

Thanks again for all the kind and nice messages,

U.

Joan M's picture
Joan M
Posts: 405
Joined: Oct 2016

Mine was done via robotic surgery at Mayo Clinic.  My doctor said not to eat any fresh fruits or vegetables for 2 weeks, I was told to eat lots of protein to help the tissues repair.  Also said not to lift over 10 pounds for 6 weeks to avoid hernias in internal stitching.  Another thing they did was give me Hibicleanse antibiotic body wash and said I must shower every day with the antibiotic soap for 14 days.  Also I couldn't drive for 2 weeks.   I was told to take ibuprofen to reduce inflamation and alternate with tylenol for pain.  My oncologis told me to take hydrcodone or oxycotin for pain because they are easier on our bodies, to avoid kidney or liver damage from the other pain meds. Also told to take Miralax to avoid constipation and help form stools. 

Today is the first day without pain meds.  I went most of the day yesterday but then needed some in the evening. 

Good luck to you!  I'd love to hear how you are doing.

Joan M

Ugur
Posts: 62
Joined: Mar 2018

Happy to hear you had a successful operation, sad that you had to do it the first point.

Since I left ICU, I am doing well.

I slowly started to eat harder food like little pieces of meat, pasta and white bread. I had started to refuse to have painkillers already back in ICU, I guess last two days. Since then I don't need any, thanks to god. I am sure you will be out of pain soon too. I have a surgery scar approximately 15-20 cm big, and it should be partly healed before I will be able to chemo back. Next 6 weeks I can't lift heavy things, and I should be careful while standing up to my feet from bed.

Most probably, tomorrow I will be home already, hopefully without any complications. I will have to keep a diet for next three weeks. The diet focuses on the foods and beverages which can be fully digested and won't irritate the bowels. 
The only medication I will be having for sure for now, is some injection to keep the blood flow in order. They may also give some meds for stomach. 
They have not informed about anything else yet. If I will have any other rutin for the next weeks, I will update here.

Thanks for your message,
Uğur

Subscribe to Comments for "First Surgery to Colon"