Total Colectomy, anyone had one?

posted 2 years ago in Wellness
Post # 2
3659 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

For such a drastic surgery, I would definitely be getting a second opinion. There are lots of possible causes of constipation — did your doctor look into all potential explanations? I know in your last post, people were mentioning diet, exercise, and water intake as possible contributors to constipation and you said your doctor hadn’t really discussed those variables with you. If you haven’t already, I would try as many lifestyle modifiers as you can to see if your constipation issues improve at all — a major surgery like this is something you want to avoid if you can, obviously.

Post # 3
42089 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

WarrenWE:  Was the doctor a gastroenterologist -a doctor who specializes in the digestive system?

Post # 4
10453 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: January 2011

Do you have a diagnosis?  I would want some answers before doing something so drastic.  Simply knowing it’s not working properly wouldn’t be enough for me, I would want to know why so I know I’m not missing out on other treatment options.  Getting a second opinion would be reasonable, even with a diagnosis.

I haven’t gone through anything that you are dealing with, but I have struggled with health issues.  I recommend seeking out whatever support you can find.  I did some counselling leading up to treatment to deal with anxiety I had about that.  It turned out to be really useful as my anxiety created problems with my treatment, and even with the counselling leading up I still had to work on it once it had started, but I at least had the tools there already.  The typical practical support is something you will probably need as well, I found starting early helped.

Post # 6
10453 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: January 2011

WarrenWE:  Are you having a follow up appointment?  I would do that, get your questions answered by your current doctor and then seek out the second opinion.  I’m glad you’ve found some people to talk this through with.  Most people would probably be having quite a bit of stress and anxiety about it, I know I would.

Hopefully you’ll get some good answers that will allow you to make the right decision for yourself!

Post # 8
21 posts
  • Wedding: December 1969

WarrenWE:  I think you definitely should see the first doctor again as well as your 2nd opinion dr to discuss all your questions. Surgery is a big step, as you know, so you want to make sure you have all the facts and are with a surgeon you trust before you make your informed decision.

Post # 9
10453 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: January 2011

WarrenWE:  That sounds really odd to me, but we likely are dealing with different healthcare systems.

If possible, see your current doctor soon.  Otherwise you aren’t really getting a second opinion, as you need to be informed of the first opinion first!  The diagnosis may even be different between the two doctors.

Post # 10
2455 posts
Buzzing bee

Definitely get a second opinion. Going through this surgery if it’s not necessary will be hell.

My dad had the surgery and wears a colostomy bag. It took him a really long time to actually start to heal. He had a perforated bowel due to either Ulcerative Colitis or Chrohn’s disease (I don’t remember, they went through so many diagnosis).

He had a second surgery to relocate the pouch since the first one was rushed. It was an emergency surgery and he was about to die.

When that healed enough he went in to have a surgery again to remove the pouch and instead they make a little sack of some sort inside you. This may be an option as it was a few years ago and fairly new then. Anyway, it eliminates the need for the bag.

Well, that thing ending up bursting and he had to have surgery to get the bag again. It took years for him to be remotely back to normal.

I’m not trying to scare you as I don’t think you and him have the same condition at all, but I wouldn’t let someone rush you into surgery without knowing all of your options and trying other things first.

If your life isn’t at stake, see what else you can try before surgery.

Post # 12
5207 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: February 2013

WarrenWE:  Definitely get a second opinion. That’s a dramatic surgery. Also, I work with hundreds of patients in both a hospital and a doctor’s office and I’ve never once known a doctor to advise a patient with that degree of constipation to take multiple laxatives. They can back up on you. Best case scenario is severe vomiting. Worse case scenario is a ruptured colon. Either way you’re not in the best condition to be power washing your intestines when your colon isn’t functioning properly and the debris has nowhere to go. Be careful and good luck!

Post # 13
5208 posts
Bee Keeper

WarrenWE:  I’m not impressed with a doctor that tells you this on the phone as opposed to an office visit, doesn’t give you a diagnosis, and is then like “Yeah, catch me in 6 months right before we do major, life changing surgery. Until then, don’t call me, I’ll call you.” Just, no. 

Definately get a second opinion. Do enemas not work for you(sorry if too personal a question)? You can get the equipment to do cleansing enemas at home(actually pretty easy). I would think they would try putting you on a bowel routine before removing your entire colon.

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