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Incision  & exercise advice wanted from my "fluffy" sisters Incision & exercise advice wanted from my "fluffy" sisters

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Unread 01-08-2008, 05:45 PM
Incision & exercise advice wanted from my "fluffy" sisters

I'm 8 days post-op TAH-BSO with a long vertical incision (haven't measured it), and I got my staples (all 25 of them, if I counted right) out yesterday. I freaked out last night when about an inch of my incision opened up and oozed watery blood. It was, of course, under my "overhang." I don't exactly live alone, but my dog isn't much help in such matters. I managed to get a Steri-strip or two across it and covered it with a sterile gauze pad they sent home with me from the hospital. This morning it was dry and appears to have closed up, so I'm a lot less concerned about it.

My question: I gather that we fluffy types (I'm about 100 pounds overweight) have a harder time with the healing of the incision. Do any of you have specific advice for how to deal with this, and in particular, how to deal with that last couple of inches at the bottom where it tends to get moist and squishy? How is it best to keep it clean down there without attracting infectious stuff?

And what about walking? After last night I'm afraid to move! I'm doing really well with pain and mobility, but I've got swelly belly so bad that at times I think I could burst the stitches just by breathing. I'm going stir crazy in the house and am itching to be more active. Will it strain the incision to do so?

Thanks for reading. I look forward to your experiences and advice.
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Unread 01-08-2008, 07:19 PM
Incision & exercise advice wanted from my "fluffy" sisters

Don't ya just love having a "shelf" I try to keep the site very dry by patting after the shower and I've also put the blow dryer on low and used it too. I know it's hard to keep it dry!

Walking is supposed to be good for you. I've walked down the street and back several times. I know what you mean...the walls are getting close. I went to CVS and the dentist today. Whoopie!

Good Luck
Unread 01-08-2008, 08:21 PM
Incision & exercise advice wanted from my "fluffy" sisters

Hi Ladies,

I am very overweight. I just went to the Wound Care Center at the hospital where I had my surgery. I have 4 open wounds (nickle size) in my incision. Plus I have a nasty wound under my "shelf" where the drain was put in. I think the drain wound is the worst out of all of mine. It is just raw.

I discovered only through my surgery that I was allergic to staples, adhesives, and most all narcotics on the market today.

One of the things I learned in healing my incision is to try to relax. Twice a day I changed my gauze pads because of the infection I had, and I used a wash cloth under my "shelf" to catch the discharge (plus it allowed that area to breath).

There is nothing wrong with being non-productive during your recovery time. In fact, that is what helped me tremendously. I read, watched movies, walked, watched my birds and squirrels, and played on the internet. I found some way of entertaining myself. I didn't need to be going all the time. In fact, I found it upbeat. Every day was my own, and I could do with it what I needed to do. My dh was so very supportive and happy with me.

I think being overly cautious can be a downside to healing. You have to get up and get going. Not lay in bed all day long, or sit with your feet up in a chair for hours at a time. At the same time, you have to remember this is major surgery. It takes 6 months to a year to fully heal inside. So, depending on how you are activity-wise, I would ask your dr about what is ok to do, and what is off limits.

I also think the kind of surgery you had really plays a huge role in how you heal. Someone who had a lot of complications like I did, is taking a long time to recover. Comparing my surgery to someone who had a vaginal hysto...well, there really isn't one. Their energy level and production level will obviously be greater than mine.

Blessings all around!
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Unread 01-08-2008, 08:46 PM
Incision & exercise advice wanted from my "fluffy" sisters

Ha, I'm the proud owner of a little "shelf" as well! My incision is horizontal though and my shelf has acted as a buffer between the incision and hurtful things like zippers, or bumping into the kitchen countertop etc. So I guess it has it's good qualities. My incision is such a very fine line, DH says it looks like a scratch from a safety pin. I haven't looked at it, I have no desire to even see it. So I'm glad it's hidden!
Unread 01-08-2008, 09:13 PM
Incision & exercise advice wanted from my "fluffy" sisters

I am "fluffy" too, and have very tender skin. I'm allergic to everything, tape, bandages, neosporin.

There are two places on my 60 staple incision (it starts 2 inches above my belly button) that are still healing. The spot that's higher up is almost healed, I just peroxide it and keep a gauze over it. For the one under the shelf, the nurse advised me to hit the whole area with peroxide twice a day ( she suggested neosporin first but I'm allergic to it), then throrughly let it dry (I get it most of the way there with a sterile gauze pad), and then put a sterile 4x4 gauze pad in there so that it folds in the fold and keeps things dry. I tape that in or it would fall out as I move around. She stressed that it's most important to keep it dry.

As far as exercise, walking is all until my six week check. I can't wait to get clearance to use my elliptical again. I've lost weight since the surgery and I want to keep that going. Winter in Chicago isn't conducive to walking much.

Good luck & Heal quick
Unread 01-08-2008, 11:29 PM
Incision & exercise advice wanted from my "fluffy" sisters

I'm about 60 lbs overweight and still have a fairly swelly belly (from my TAH - kept ovaries - 3.5 weeks ago)... It covers the (horizontal) incision right up and I'm afraid that the sweat (from walking, etc) is irritating it. I don't have any weeping (or staples or steristrips anymore), but the incision line is redder than it was and looks like the edges are slightly parting (can they do that?). When I asked my doctor last week about the incision (only the middle of it was red at the time) she said it looked very good and was healing very well. I'm just worried because it looks to me like its getting worse instead of better.
Anyone have any advice for care of the incision?
Unread 01-09-2008, 10:57 PM
Incision & exercise advice wanted from my "fluffy" sisters

Thanks for your replies, ladies.

I dug out my hand mirror, went and reclined like a princess on my couch, and balanced the hand mirror between my thighs so that I could actually *see* the underside of my belly.

Thus I was able to dry any seepage with a gauze pad, attach a strategic Steri-strip using *both* hands, and then apply Polysporin (probably the Canadian equivalent of Neosporin and the suggestion from my doc). There was less of a gap there than I think there was the night before. I felt somewhat reassured.

Today I went with my dog and dogwalker on a nice, easy walk in the woods, and it felt great. Before surgery I considered my daily walks to be essential for my sanity, and I really look forward to going out with my dog alone again without having to rely on help (he's 140 pounds and we usually drive into the woods, where I let him off leash). I had been worrying that walking would irritate or stress the incision too much, but it was absolutely worth it to be out with my dog and moving and breathing wonderful fresh air. I was lucky, too, that the weather cleared for a bit today and was relatively friendly.

I'm still going stir crazy, though. I have my stockpile of books I made ready before surgery, but my "mush brain" precludes any serious reading... it's the TV for me these days. Yuck.

Xantho, I can't help you, but from my reading I'm guessing that your situation is pretty normal. Perhaps somebody else will reply.

Bye for now.
Unread 01-10-2008, 02:18 AM
Incision & exercise advice wanted from my "fluffy" sisters

I have a "shelf" too and was very afraid of it getting infected. I would wash it carefully everyday and then pat dried it. I also put some guaze bandage tuck in my shelf to help with any sweat. Mine healed fine with no complications at all.
I would love to get out and walk but right now we have lots of snow and ice. I don't want to fall and hurt myself especially since I am going back to work next Thursday. I am so sick of all this snow, right now it is snowing again and we are suppose to get another 1-3inches on top of our 5 inches....YUCK!

Unread 01-10-2008, 05:48 AM
Incision & exercise advice wanted from my "fluffy" sisters


Another *fluffy* here! 's too all! I have a "shelf" too so I am taking care of my incision very thoroughly. My Dr just opened up my old C/section (2) again and went in that way. She found lots of scar tissue and one ovary and my bladder were "stuck" to my colon. Also my uterus was stuck to my abdominal wall. That explains that horrible pain that I would get every month and no seems to know why. She also found adenomiosys.

Anyway, I have been very careful with the incision and after showers I use the blower to dry it up, so far so good.

Good luck to all!


Polypectomy+D&C+Hysteroscopy 8/06
TAH Dec 26th 2007 Windber PA
Final Dx:
Uterus and Cervix 131 GMS
Proliferative Phase Endometrium with Adenomyosis.
Myometrium with no histopathologic change.
Cervix with Nabothian Cyst.
Uterine Fibroid.
Unread 01-10-2008, 07:40 AM
Incision & exercise advice wanted from my "fluffy" sisters


I have a "shelf" too. I am way past all of you in the healing dept. (thank God!) but what I did was use the blow dryer after my shower to make sure the area was all dry. My incision is horizontal,doc just reopened the scar for 2 c-sections I had.I had a LOT of rock hard scar tissue ( still have some, he stopped once he got to my uterus.....a hour & half later)

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