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good stool softener? good stool softener?

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Unread 03-03-2002, 03:27 PM
good stool softener?

I'm reading a lot about the (possible) need for stool softeners after surgery. Can anyone recommend one? I've never had one besides prunes.

Also -- for me, chocolate & black tea definitely speed things up down there. Would that be something I could try in the hospital to get things moving, or is that the wrong kind of stimulation? I guess I'm not sure what an over-the-counter stool softener is, or does, exactly.



10 days and counting....
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Unread 03-03-2002, 03:56 PM

I would definitely have one on hand. I recommend getting one with a lubricant. I have been taking it daily since getting home. I would go ahead and take it to the hospital with you. Just ask the nurses before you start taking it.
I am 8 days post op and just started going. Of course I had not been on solids for a week...then it took 3 days.
I'd recommend having some gas-X on hand as well.
Other than that my surgery and recovery has gone really well!
Good luck.
See ya soon on the other side.

Unread 03-03-2002, 03:58 PM

Mine is called Docusal (but does not have the lubricant).
Just ask your pharmasist for a good one.
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Unread 03-03-2002, 04:14 PM
Good question

Hi Melissa

That is a very good question and I was wondering about that also. Yesterday in chat, someone mentioned 'Peri colace' and said that it was what the hospital had on hand also. I have no idea if it has a lubricant or even if it's over-the-counter. I would like some more names of brands also, so thanks for your suggestion, Shelley.
Unread 03-03-2002, 04:42 PM
Help from the Princess of Plugged

Hi ladies,

You can get usually stool softeners at the grocery store or drug store. Please check with your Dr. before or after surgery and make sure they give you the ok.

There are stool softeners w/ laxatives and plain old stool softeners. My suggestion would be to use the stool softener WITHOUT laxative first. They are called in my grocery store's terms -- right on the label -- "Stool Softeners", brand name is Colace or PeriColace. Read the ingredients. The stool softener ingredient alone is docusate sodium and the laxative is casanthranol. The reason I suggest trying docusate sodium alone first is that when the laxative is used it's kind of like putting a grenade in there to blast out what has been softened. I was forced, only once, after my TAH/BSO to resort to the combo. I would not like to repeat it again -- ever. I found that if I went with stool softener, apple juice (preferably warm) (warm tea does it for me too-I thought I was weird) and prune juice I got the same results without the nasty hurt. Remember what your insides have just been through. Gas-x or Phazyme are both good gas relievers. Phazyme is what I used because it comes in softgels.

Good luck. It's just one of those things we have to go through but it sure beats pads and plugs.
Unread 03-03-2002, 05:01 PM
good stool softener?

Hi Melissa, yes, I second the Gas-X and the Colace. Colace is available even in generic form at any drug store. Prune juice works wonders, warm if you can stand it, and I have found bran muffins, ice cream and black coffee also work (they gave me coffee at the castle, which surprised me, but it was too soon for it to work at that point). Not to be too graphic about it but it helps a lot to have something to read, listen to, watch, think about, whatever, while you are sitting trying to use the toilet. You will be understandably nervous and afraid that it might hurt, and this can make you tense up your anal sphincter...if you can distract yourself you may be able to relax and have an easier time of it. I would also agree that you should try to avoid having to use a chemical laxative if possible - oh, the pain that conjures up!
Ask your , but mine had them start giving me gas-x and colace in the castle right after surgery and I was sure glad they did. Even so it was 5 days before I had a BM but eventually the big event did happen!
Good luck!

- Linda
Unread 03-03-2002, 05:04 PM
good stool softener?

I must say, those prunes are wonderful to have on hand. 5 a day worked very well for me. Even better was a bowel prep with I think helped prevent post-op bowel complications. Best of luck!
Unread 03-03-2002, 07:03 PM
good stool softener?

I use the walmart version of stool softener.. even now before surgery. Pain killers have that aweful effect on me (ugh). I will be sure to ask my doc about this at the pre-op appointment (better add it to my list now before I forget).

After my tubal ligation in 98, it was 8 days before I had gone. When the pain from not being able to "move things along" became to much for me to stand, I went and bought Correctol! BAD BAD BAD mistake! I had such horrible cramps from that stuff and it felt like I was in labor all over again.

Please ladies.. if you haven't already.. ask your doc about a stool softener. You will be so much more comfortable.

(oh yeah - I like the magazine idea.. ya might be sitting there for some time) LOL
Unread 03-03-2002, 07:24 PM
good stool softener?

Awesome info, ladies -- just what I needed! <grin>

Y'all are just so helpful. It makes all the difference. Thanks.

Unread 03-03-2002, 07:31 PM
good stool softener?

All these ideas are great! Just a couple of things I want to add...

First, you may not have any problems with moving your bowels! Many people do, but many do not! Please don't think that this is a given!! If you drink lots of water and juice and do your walking in the hospital when you are able, you may have no trouble at all.
I had some serious gas...called it "rolling thunder", but it passed right on schedule and when I did have my first bowel movement, it was pretty soft and not at all a problem. Don't assume this will be a problem.

That prepared. DISCUSS IT with your doctor, and have a plan in place before you go. Pack some prunes, some stool softener (if your doctor OKs it), and then if you need it (AFTER checking with the doctor first) take it only if you need it. And have a supply at home, too.

It's critical that you not take anything in the hospital without your doctor's permission and knowledge...and you want the nurses to be aware of your "plan" so they can help you figure out when it's time to try it and when things are occuring within a normal timeframe.


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