Crohn’s Chronicles – Part 3

After my last update, I was awaiting a colonoscopy to determine if I needed another surgery before we started further treatment. I was hopeful that it would not be necessary, but I knew it was a good possibility. Well, the results are in, and I do in fact need another bowel resection.

I will spare you the photos of my insides, but I have a very tight stricture at the site of my first resection. That’s not to say it was performed badly. Scar tissue has just built up over time. The stricture is so small the doctor couldn’t even get the scope through it. She used a balloon to stretch it as much as possible for the time being, but it definitely needs to come out. Knowing, and in fact seeing it, I understand why I was constantly getting blockages. I’m extremely lucky I didn’t end up needing an emergency surgery in the past two years.

While my doctor hoped to have the surgery performed within a month of my colonoscopy, the surgeon is out of town for the first half of October and so I won’t even see her in the office until the end of the month. Which pretty much sucks, since I am eager to get this over with.

Strangely, I am feeling much more scared and anxious about this surgery than I did for my original resection when I was only 19 years old. I don’t know if it’s because at 19 I didn’t fully appreciate how serious the operation was. Or, more likely, I am worried because now I know how absolutely hellacious the recovery was. Even with an epidural and plenty of narcotics, I was in horrible pain. I keep telling myself this will be different. I was extremely sick during my first surgery. The section of bowel they removed was full of inflammation and infection. I had been on steroids for a year, making my recovery longer and harder.

I’m going into this surgery, relatively speaking, much healthier. The doctor is hopeful my surgeon may even be able to perform it laparoscopically. My first surgery required cutting vertically through a third of my abdomen. I have a huge scar going straight through my belly button.

I also know that being away from my pugs will ramp up my anxiety that much more. When I was in the hospital for 4 days recently, missing my boys was the worst part. Yes, worse than the pain and not being able to eat for days.

So, that’s where I’m at. Anxiously awaiting the big surgery. I honestly haven’t given much thought to after that. Maybe that’s where I should focus. Starting a new course of treatment that will hopefully give me back my life.