The Post-Op Follow-Up Round-Up

by on Friday, June 26, 2009 17:27
This entry is filed under: positive thinking

I had my post-op appointment Friday over at UCSF. My surgeon saw me as I came in through the hallway and said hi, so my natural reaction was to impress her with an impromptu Irish jig. My reasoning at the time was to show her I’m perfectly healthy (note my joyous footwork!) and am so totally ready for the take-down surgery. I think at this point I just embarrass her in hallways.

Once in the actual appointment, it went pretty fast. To be honest, the only complications I currently have are not related to the J-Pouch at all. The two biggest issues I have right now are my irritated skin (I have super sensitive skin that loves to flare up when I’m within a thousand yards of anything that remotely resembles a seasonal allergy) and one lapro scar that isn’t fully healed. The doc can’t do anything about my skin of course, but she did look at my lapro scar and isn’t too concerned. The wound just needs to heal up, since it seems that it pulled open a little, unlike the other ones. The skin just needs to close up. I currently cover it with a saline-soaked gauze thing, but the doc recommends I use a vitamin A and D topical on it. Just as she said that, she went “Oh wait here’s something better! Try honey!” Apparently you take honey and mix in sugar until it’s the consistency of a paste. Cover the wound in that, cover with gauze, and let it heal. I then added “Sweet! I can then finish off the left-overs!”, at which point we both laughed and high-fived each other. Ok, we didn’t high-five, but she did look at me weird when I mentioned I could eat the left-overs. I just hope I don’t attract bees and … and bears. Or even worse, bees the size of bears.

She then, how can I put this, used her finger to see how my J-Pouch was feeling… from within. As I lay there on my side, wondering why I didn’t have a rape-whistle handy, she said I’m healing up well and seem to be on track for takedown. Not too shabby, methinks. The first week in July I’ll go in for an x-ray and they’ll verify if everything is where it should be, progress-wise. The take-down will then be scheduled the week afterwards, so the rough plan right now is I’m going back for round two in the second week of July!

So yeah, a pretty successful post-op, except for the part where I forgot to ask about my diet. When can I eat sausage again?!
Until then, my stoma and I will continue to solve mysteries each week. This previous week’s adventure is below:

Squirt_1
On a side note, a special shout out to Elise, who is about to escape the hospital.

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21 Responses to “The Post-Op Follow-Up Round-Up”

  1. avatar

    Elise says:

    June 27th, 2009 at 1:29 am

    Thanks for my special shout out Brevin! I am so glad that things are going well for you :)

    Elise

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    Lizz says:

    June 28th, 2009 at 11:05 am

    Rape whistle. lol

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    Emily says:

    June 29th, 2009 at 9:19 pm

    Hey Brevin~ I’ve been following your journey and thank you so much for your bravery and humor on the situation. I followed in your footsteps and had my surgery at UCSF with Dr. Varma on June 1st. Thank goodness I took a pain killer before reading your latest post…it still hurts to laugh! I too, cannot wait for the takedown and I am excited for you that you are healing well and on your way. Again, thank you; you have helped me more than you know. Hey Elise~ I am so pleased that you too are on your way to healing and I wish you a speedy recovery!

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    Brevin Reply:

    Hi Emily. Now that you mention it, Dr. Varma said that another patient of hers knew me through this site (like following along with the posts). Was that you? If so, put in a good word for me at the offices next time!
    You had your surgery at Mnt Zion? You shoulda let me know so I could come visit. I’m all for visiting other folks in the j-pouch community. Especially during lunch/dinner hours at the hospital, because you won’t be able to eat all your dessert and I’ll just happen to be standing there, staring at it. In other words, I’ll come visit for takedown (order extra portions).

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    Emily Reply:

    Brevin, yes that was me. And yes, I too hobbled the hallways at Mt. Zion. You went home with your JP drain didn’t you? How long did you have it at home? Mine leaked like crazy for a good week before I begged Louis Ann to take it out! Are you doing ok with your stoma? I have apparently developed lesions on and around the stoma area…so not fun. Thanks for the heads up for the follow up appt. so I can prepare myself! A visit would be welcome and you certainly have earned any dessert they throw my way!

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    Brevin Reply:

    Emily, I sure did go home with that JP Drain. I had it for two weeks total I think. They removed it when I was resubmitted for being a complete pansy (“waah waaah pain waaah”). I don’t think my JP leaked towards the end. What are lesions? How do I know I have them?

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    Eric Reply:

    I had some sort of nasty nasty drain, too. I had to go back in to the hospital because I had an abscess after my loop ileo was formed. I had to go to IR and they sent me home with some syringes of saline to clean out the drain. I never could get it right, and nothing ever drained, and then when they took out the tubing, the left the lead string in. So I had a piece of black string hanging out of of me and I was too afraid to pull it because I thought it would pull some other junk out with it. It didn’t, but hey, here’s to being a wimp. I had to go back into the hospital to have them pull out the string. Anywho, it gets better. Really. It does.

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  4. avatar

    Emily says:

    June 30th, 2009 at 5:48 pm

    So these lesions are just little red bumps that cause a lot of pain (burning, stinging, etc.); you’ll know if you have them trust me! I guess they form if there is too much moisture around the area (as explained by my home health nurse). So we have been trying to find the right mixture of powder and barrier gunk to allow them to stop hurting so much. The problem is that the wafer sits right on top of them so there is constant contact and pressure…think really bad blister. I truly don’t have any pain at 4 weeks post op except for these buggers. You are a trooper for carrying around that grenade (JP drain) for two weeks at home I would have gone crazy!

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    Brevin Reply:

    I totally have that skin irritation you mention! It’s weird, but the surgery itself = no issue. My skin’s strong dislike for anything sticky = issue. I thought it was just my sensitive skin being a jerk. Maybe it’s both. I’ve been messing around with the powder right now to build up that barrier. Jamie, a J-Pouch veteran from this site, just mentioned something called kenelog spray and tegederm (a non-reactive film that you put between your skin and your wafer to prevent a reaction). Right before this reply I sent off an email asking about these two gadget-doodads.

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    Eric Reply:

    With my loop ileo I had a lot of irritation. The ostomy nurse (a godsend) taught me how to spray a few pumps of the clear spray, then sprinkle some powder on top of that, then blow off the loose bits, and repeat the 2-step process if necessary. My loop ileo was so bad that nurses would look at it and say “eww, that’s not a permanent ostomy, is it?” as if to say, if it is permanent, you’re screwed as all hell. When I would say no, they’d sigh in relief and we would try to get the appliance on before the stoma ‘erupted’ like in Brevin’s comic.

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  5. avatar

    Emily says:

    July 9th, 2009 at 3:19 pm

    Hey Brevin~ It was great getting to meet you and visit on Tuesday…what are the chances we would both be at Dr. V’s office! How did the x-ray go? Painless, I hope. Best of luck for your takedown on Monday, I will be thinking positive thoughts for you! Good riddance to Stomie!

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    Brevin Reply:

    Hi Emily!
    I’ll post an update soon, with pics from the x-ray! It’s a small world, huh? I don’t expect to hear “Are you Brevin?” from strangers in a doctor’s office, unless I’m in an action-packed medical drama movie.

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    Emily Reply:

    I know…don’t you know you are like a celebrity. I forgot to get your authograph! Oh, and thanks for the marshmellow tip!

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    Elise says:

    July 11th, 2009 at 1:19 pm

    Brevin????? When is your takedown??? This coming week??

    Elise

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