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Adhesion study Adhesion study

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Unread 08-23-2004, 07:07 AM

Hey, Janet.

Your symptoms sound similar to mine, however, I no longer have the same pulling, tugging sensation since my last surgery in July '03. I do feel an occasional deeper pulling but it's not to the constant degree like I had before. But, I do have a particular area of stinging pain in my lower right quadrant. If I rake my fingernail across it, it feels like a burning sensation. Some days it's better than others but it's never totally gone. I have other areas like this as well but they're not as consistently annoying. Also, I feel tightness sometimes and it feels like I need to stretch. Then, there are days when I feel almost normal. Unlike some others I've heard talk about adhesions, I don't get any change in symptoms when I've had a bowel movement. Oftentimes you'll hear people talk about how their symptoms seem to let up once they've had a bowel movement. I guess it's just dependent on how badly the nasty little things are attached to the bowel. Unfortunately, the only way adhesions can truly be detected is with laparoscopic surgery, which runs a risk of creating more adhesions or, as in my case, a possible conversion to another open surgery - - YIKES! My gyn told me that on rare occasion she has seen them on a transvaginal ultrasound but that has usually been when there are ovaries involved. I had a pelvic ultrasound about three months ago and it showed absolutely nothing. Hope this helps.
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Unread 08-23-2004, 02:48 PM
Adhesion study

I could have written Janet's post myself. In fact, I was about to ask the same question--what are the symptoms of adhesions? I also am 7 months post op today. I feel cramping and pain almost all of the time. My lower back also hurts me sometimes.

I didn't have endo--that I know of--but I did have adenomyosis, fibroids, and cysts on both ovaries.

Is it normal to still feel pain at 7 months post op--almost as if you are about to start a period? I saw a gynecologist at 4 months post op and she said the pain was most likely caused by muscle fatigue. She wanted to send me to gastro doctor, but I didn't want to go through anything else just then.

I was abandoned by my surgeon who performed my hysterectomy because of a medicine mix up in the hospital the day after surgery. My lungs began to collapse. I now have to use an inhaler every day, whereas before surgery, I didn't.

I just want to know if it is normal to still feel pain this far out from surgery? I'm sorry this is so long. Thanks in advance.~Moonchime
Unread 08-23-2004, 05:11 PM
Adhesion study

Anita and Moonchime,
Thank you for your responses. I'm sorry to hear of all the struggles you are facing. Moonchime, my doc. also said my original problem 7 weeks post-op was a strained muscle. I've had strained muscles before, and they eventually healed. This is not healing, and I am wondering if this is something chronic that I am going to have to deal with on an on-going basis. It sounds like if it is adhesions, that it is risky to have them treated. This is such a bummer and it makes me wonder if I am going to have to give up some of the activities I love to do. I had so hoped this hysterectomy would make all the pain go away and that I could resume my life as it was. I still ask myself if it was worth it, and I have to say that the pain I have now is so much less than it was before.

I am at a loss as to where to go next. I have seen another doctor for a second opinion, and he said that I just need to be patient and that the pain would eventually go away. He also said I could go out and play tennis again, that it is good to be active. I can't believe that one, sometimes it hurts to walk. Several friends have encouraged me to go to NY or Boston to see a specialist. Has anyone out there gone this route??? If so, what kind of specialist did you see? Please help. I can't let this one go, it is interfering with my life and beginning next week, I am back to teaching 32 precious PreKindergarten kids who need my undivided attention.

Thanks for your time and continual encouragement.
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Unread 08-23-2004, 11:27 PM
Adhesion study

Hi all,

Wow this was so informative this explains so much to me I have had endo removed several times along with severe adhesions GYN took out a lot during my hysto sounds like the more they worked on me the worse I got this also helps me to understand why I hurt so bad when I am constipated and why I hurt less when my bowels do work, I kept telling my GYN the pain was just like before the hysto. I am so hoping now after my hysto my endo days are over I know my adhesion days are not over but I was right to think that they are staying where they are if they go in again I am so afraid it will make matters worse my GYN had agreed with my thinking on this but he didn't explain it to me as well as this post did...Thanks for all this information... I am working on learning to live with pain but I may need to have my bowels looked at. If I have to have a colonoscopy this will not cause more adhesions will it???? I didn't think so but thought I would ask, but if my bowel problem is do to adhesions then I guess I am stuck with it so its kind of a no win isn't it but the positive will be they won't grow back if they are not removed again and it seems to hurt worse every time they grow back......Thanks again...
Unread 08-24-2004, 07:57 AM
Adhesion Saga


Only you know when your pain is bad enough to act on it. I can tell you that I was in a similar place about this time last year. My only caution is to be careful not to be too hasty. I've often wondered if I was. And, yes, I do struggle but, truly, I'm doing sooooo much better. I don't mean to be simplistic but there really is a lot to that business about your frame of mind. My frame of mind last year was that I had to get more surgery to get this problem fixed once and for all. When it turned out that it didn't work quite like I wanted it to, I was forced to go to plan B, which was how to deal with where I am now. It's been a process for sure but my exercises are helping, my diet is helping, and the incredible amount of water I drink is helping. Given the fact that you are only 7 months out, it's really hard to say what pain is going to get better and what pain is going to increase over time. Yes, there are surgeons who specialize in cutting adhesions, though not that many. And even at that, their overall success rates aren't guaranteed. I have not ruled this out as a possible option for myself in the future but, having gone through one surgery already, I will have to see my pain get a lot worse before I do it again. I have been in communication with one of the specialists (with the knowledge of my gynecologist) and because I don't want to endorse any particular doctor, I won't mention any names on line. Feel free to PM me and I'll provide you with the info I have for you to proceed in the manner that you and your doctor feel is the best for you. In the meantime, you may want to talk to your doctor again about your pain and see if there are any pain management techniques (e.g., physical therapy, different medications, etc.) that might help while you decide how you should go forward. Lots of hugs!
Unread 08-24-2004, 10:34 PM
Adhesion study

Terrific study! I haven't read it yet. I really like your summation.

Adhesions are scar tissue. Anytime you have surgery, you develop scar tissue. According to some studies, if you have adhesions, every effort should be made to do ONLY laparoscopic surgeries if needed. I guess just having the bowels exposed to air can create adhesions. Great huh?!

When you have adhesions, your bowels are kind of "stuck together" in no particular order. They are supposed to float around. If you have gas, you have pain. Your bowels don't "move" anymore like they used to so it can get "stuck" and cause pain in a particular spot until it moves through.

Anyway, I know this only because I had my gallbladder removed in 1976. The year before my son was born. In 1994, I had acute abdominal pain, a partial bowel obstruction and bleeding ulcers as a result of the adhesions from my gallbladder surgery. That is almost 20 yrs. later. And I hadn't had any other abdominal surgeries.

Adhesions are no fun. The one thing I have found is that if I drink lots of fluid and take fiber capsules, it isn't quite as bad because everything stays softer and moves through the intestines better.
I don't know if that will work for anyone else, but it is about the only thing that helps me anymore. I always know when I haven't taken my fiber pills. And I very rarely eat anything spicy enough to give me gas. I end up doubled over in pain.

That study sounds like it is pretty accurate. Thanks for sharing it with us.
Unread 09-20-2004, 11:48 AM
Adhesion study

Thank you so much for this post Audrey! I found in doing a search, trying to find out why I've started hurting again on the right side.

I had lots of adhesions -- but I've had multiple surgeries, and tend to make excessive scar tissue... This study and your post give me something to take to the doctor -- the one who said, "Well, a hysterectomy is not guaranteed to remove your pain." That comment left me wondering why I had the surgery! Sure, I'm not bleeding anymore... but I want to stop hurting!

The explanation on inflammation was particularly helpful. I have lupus - an inflammatory disease. Would love to see more on this subject... if anyone sees anything, please let me know!

Unread 09-24-2004, 03:39 PM
Adhesion study

Coo, the joys of adhesions! I have had a few abdominal surgeries and each time the report said, lots of adhesions, first my appendix badly scarred, then one ovary with adhesions and last November an adhesiolysis to remove adhesions from the bowel. Now four months after hyst all of a sudden I get bad indigestion and hearburn and nearly continuous cramping which does seem to move around and a stingy sharp pain on the right side around the area of my appendix scar. The doc put me on an antacid to take but I dont understand how this will stop me feeling sick when I eat, like I am full really quick and overstuffed myself. I have acid reflux too so is this just a post op gastritis or are those blasted adhesions back again? Do I go back to the doctor in a week or so if its not better? He did a test (no results yet) to see if there is a bladder infection too!

I am still feeling much better than I used to though on the upside and as long as I know what I now have to cope with as a trade off against the chronic pain etc etc, and what I can get rid of the better. Dh is a bit fed up as he feels at nearly 4 months post op I should be better, and so did the doc!

Take care sisters.


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