Fissure/Wounds from Surgery Healing

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Fissure/Wounds from Surgery Healing

Postby plshelp » 14 Jan 2016, 22:59

Hello all!

I had a colorectal surgery about a month about and, as you could imagine, the wounds are taking their time healing and make bowel movements incredibly painful.
I had a small fissure before surgery that caused only mild discomfort and blood spotting; it seems that that area/fissure has gotten slightly worse after having a doctor mess around down there.

My diet has fluctuated, as I have been getting diarrhea for several days that would then leave me with a day or two of constipation/harder stool.
In general, my bowel movements are fairly soft. I take a teaspoon of metamucil a day, as to not make me take too many trips to the restroom. My doctor recently told me to try collace, but I am hesitant due to my bouts of diarrhea I have experienced.

My bowels/BMs have not been very predictable lately; I am investigating whether it is IBS, generalized anxiety, or just the long term effects of repeated stress finally taking their toll.

Does anyone have any tips for healing/dealing with the extreme pain of BMs? It was decreasing daily, but seems to be at a stand-still. It hurts enough that I'm not necessarily afraid to go anymore, but is still very uncomfortable.

Also, if metamucil/high fiber foods already seem to make my stool soft, should I even try/take the collace? Or should I possibly drop the metamucil in favor of the stool softener?
I am afraid to try it due to having very busy days during the week; my diarrhea bouts are so bad and painful that I really don't even want to chance having one in public.

Thanks! :)
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Re: Fissure/Wounds from Surgery Healing

Postby Manitourose » 15 Jan 2016, 09:33

Hi plshelp,
I'm so sorry to hear what pain and discomfort you are in! :(
Metamucil or psyllium husk generally bulks the stool making it easier to pass and usually less loose.
So your doctor was aware of how often you have diarrhea and suggested Colace? I know many CRS or general doctors recommend stool softeners out of a knee jerk reaction knowing hard stools can be to blame for fissure issues.

For tips of pain and healing. I wish I had a good answer. I'm actually in a retear phase and didn't even have a difficult BM. Sigh! However, baths seem to be my #1 to calming the pain and promoting healing. In addition, I sit on a heating pad when I can, drink lots of water or non-caffeine teas (ginger, mint, lemon), use the cream and I also take Tylenol as needed for pain recently. I too wake up and worry about going the bathroom as I know its repeated insult to a delicate area. I find myself frustrated that I am doing everything I can and still not healing entirely.

Side note: Due to my anxiety when I go to have a BM I tighten up rather than relax through it. I have been loading pics or something on my phone or reading material to focus on to relax my mind. I have even done deep breathing to get me to relax more through the BM -- literally, whether it's a loose or normal stool.

Have you researched probiotics? They have been shown to help tame the digestive system and BMs a bit in some cases. Depending on what's going on. They can be hit or miss.

One last thing, you seem to have bowel movements that aren't regular but particularly diarrhea. Have you spoken to your doctor about what may be the culprit? Definitely could be IBS-D or IBS-(Alternating) and anxiety certainly has an influence. Also, a variety of digestive disorders and food allergies can wreak havoc on our systems. Some basic bloodwork and investigation can help navigate what's going on.

Hang in there! You are definitely going through a lot.

:smilyhug:
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Re: Fissure/Wounds from Surgery Healing

Postby plshelp » 15 Jan 2016, 13:05

Thank you for the rather prompt reply, Manitourose! :)

The doctor I have been seeing is actually the surgeon who did my surgery, as my physician has not been available until this upcoming week. As he is the one who did the surgery, I thought he would be a good go-to for healing. However, it isn't really his job I guess to diagnose/talk about bowel problems. I went in this Monday, and he did an extremely painful examination of the area and told me I still had some healing/swollen wounds and a particularly worse spot where the fissure originally was. He told me I am slowly healing, whether I believe it or not, and sort of disregarded my pleas of the pain staying at the same level for about 2 weeks now. I wasn't that satisfied with that answer, but do know that healing in that area takes awhile. As I'm sensitive to pain, I may be making it worse for myself in the mind! :(

As far as the diarrhea/odd bowel habits go, he didn't talk much about that and again disregarded it. I told him I had been having fairly soft but bulky bowel movements because I am taking Metamucil, and he still recommended the Colace. I am particularly hesitant in part due to them having me take Metamucil/Miralax the first week after surgery to combat the constipation from pain medicine; long story short, after I got off the pain medicine I had extremely bad and painful diarrhea for about three days straight! :( I don't know if it was from the medicine/taking too much or a side effect of the nasty pain meds, or just my general digestion. I never had a problem with my BMs until after this surgery, and it was only about two inches into the rectum/colon so I would be confused as to how that would effect my overall system!

I am going to discuss this with my physician next week, but just thought I'd seek advice here as I wish to get myself under control the best I can before my busy weeks start up again!

I have just about the same healing/pain management ritual as you do! I take 2-3 sitz baths a day, pop a tylenol/ibuprofen when its really bad, and sit on a heating pad when at home.
I am mostly worried about pain management for when I get busy again; I have been on rest/vacation for a few weeks, and obviously I can't take a bath or apply much heat if I'm at work or class! :cry:

I have and am almost out of some Probiotics I got from a CVS. I'm not sure how well a CVS brand works compared to bigger name brand supplements/Activia-like Probiotics, but I believe that it aids in getting the nutrients from food (due to a color change in stool).

As far as IBS goes, I never had problems before surgery. I do have family history of it (Grandmother), but I am not sure if IBS is a hereditary thing? Most health issues are, so it is possible.
My surgeon did mention that he believes worrying and stress could have an impact on my overall health, including digestion. This last week I've been having cramping/a phantom feeling of needed to use the restroom, as well as insomnia/fatigue and dizziness.
This could easily be stemming from more than just the fissure/wounds from surgery- but those are what typically bother me the most. Hence why I discovered this lovely site. :) :%_+:
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