Diverticulosis/Diverticulitis, Anyone diagnosed?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by freeny, May 2, 2006.

  1. freeny thread starter macrumors 68020

    freeny

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    #26
    Thanks.
    I see youve gone Demi on us...

    It seems kinda strange that just about all the people that have replied to this thread with Diverticulosis are male and started having attacks around age 33. Until this thread my doctor had told me I was the youngest he had ever known to have this. Guess there are alot more of us then we thought.
     
  2. Grey Beard macrumors 65816

    Grey Beard

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    #27
    Diverticulitis

    Jason, I must admit that I was a little hesitant in joining this thread, but after a somewhat difficult couple of days in my recovery I figured that I should.

    My experience with the complaint began in my mid twenties, I had regular episodes until I was 28 when it became so severe that I was hospitalised and underwent a laparotomy and then a diagnosis of diverticular disease was made. Due to a secondary infection I spent some four weeks in hospital and then a couple of months recovering. Not a nice time, and as I was of a young age, the medical team were at a loss as to why the disease hit me so young. Ha, perhaps my miss spent youth, and maybe my being born a month premature, but here I am only speculating.

    Jason, I certainly don't want to alarm you and am only giving my own experiences. The next 30 years were peppered with many episodes until it was noted as being chronic. I'm now 58. At the end of last year I underwent a full colonoscopy and again a diagnosis of extreme diverticulitis was made, along with tumors being identified in the ascending colon as well as in the sigmoid and descending colon. In February I was admitted again to hospital and another laparotomy was performed (giving me another 13" incision scar to go with the rest from numerous other abdominal surgeries over the years) An ileocaecal resection, anterior resection and primary anastomosis was done. So, basically the whole sigmoid and a portion of descending colon was removed and a major portion of the ascending colon was removed, the bits left were stretched and donuts made and joined back up. This meant that so far I've not had to have a colostomy bag.

    It's now six months since the operation and I'm still in recovery mode. There is a possibility of further surgery in the near future. As the latest procedure was very major, the recovery could be a further six months. The diverticulitis and tumours are just two of the list of troubles I have and I've been a full time, card carrying invalid now for over ten years.

    The operations and recovery times are not the main issues in my opinion. Keeping a good outlook on life and having a warped sense of humour is more important. Perhaps I am more fortunate in that, the Devil looks after his own. However so far sex with my boyfriend in either role has had to be put on the back burner. Gentle readers of Macrumors may recall my postings on the now defunct GayWay. Oh, I should also mention that I don't think that my proclivities in anyway had a bearing on the diverticular troubles.

    Jason, keep a bright outlook, and importantly do what the medical team tell you, follow the harsh diets to the letter, and keep laughing and joking around. I wish you all the best and if you'd like to discuss this in greater depth, email me.

    I like to think that what was a colon [:] is now a semicolon [;] He he he.

    KGB
    who was Kevin
    aka GreyBeard
     
  3. freeny thread starter macrumors 68020

    freeny

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    #28
    Thanks Grey Beard for the candid words. In a strange way you have made me feel a little better;)
    Sounds like you are a strong person with a good sense of humor. Perhaps that is truly the key to coping with this.
    I hope everyone who has shared on this thread much luck and success in their respective conditions. I hope to hear back updates and more responses in the future on this thread.

    Thanks all for sharing.
    Its been very helpfull.
     
  4. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    #29
    Yikes... you guys make me realize how lucky I am that my pooper works normally.

    Good luck to all of you...
     
  5. yellow Moderator emeritus

    yellow

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    #30
    Well, in a little more than a week I'll be going under the knife to have about a foot of my small intestine removed. I'm rather apprehensive, but I have high hopes that it will get me off the steroids and keep me off them for more than 2 weeks (my record at being steroid free in the last 3 years).
     
  6. iGary Guest

    iGary

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    #31
    Good luck, Yeller. :) We're rooting for you. ;)
     
  7. yellow Moderator emeritus

    yellow

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    #32
    Danke. Can't wait to get catheterized and have a tube inserted into my stomach. :rolleyes: :)
     
  8. iGary Guest

    iGary

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    #33
    It's better than trying to get up and piss with ten tubes hanging off your limbs.
     
  9. freeny thread starter macrumors 68020

    freeny

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    #34
    Just try to remember all the morphine and dilaudid your gonna get;)
    I really enjoy good comedies when on morphine and have a stash on my iPod just in case I find myself in emergency surgery again. Perhaps you could prepare too.
    Please let us know how everything went.
    Although I am an atheist I will be praying for you.
     
  10. iGary Guest

    iGary

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    #35
    Mmmmmm Hydromorphone....mmmmm
     
  11. yellow Moderator emeritus

    yellow

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    #36
    True.. but that sounds like an adventure!

    Hehe, thanks. :)
     
  12. freeny thread starter macrumors 68020

    freeny

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    #37
    It doesnt get much better:)
     
  13. sunfast macrumors 68020

    sunfast

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    #38
    Poetic iGary! And yet, that's exactly what my colitis felt like during the last attack.
     
  14. eva01 macrumors 601

    eva01

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    #39
    Hmmm that medication never worked for me and my pain :/ no idea why
     
  15. balamw Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

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    #40
    It's gotta be the Macs...

    All this talk of surgery makes me glad my diverticuli are currently under control. I have not had an attack in over 18 months now though I keep a Cipro/Flaygl cocktail on hand...

    B
     
  16. iGary Guest

    iGary

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    #41
    Yeah, I don't think (nor expect) most people understand how much they take a normal functioning gut for granted.
     
  17. njmac macrumors 68000

    njmac

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    #42
    I'm 34 and female and I'm getting a colonoscopy on thursday. I'm so nervous about it that I wan't to cry. I hate getting anesthesia and I don't want any bad news either. I've been having abdominal pain, extreme pain when going to the bathroom sometimes and have a family history of diverticulitis, polyps, and colon cancer. We'll see on thursday :(
     
  18. yellow Moderator emeritus

    yellow

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    #43
    Good luck.

    Don't worry about the colonoscopy or going under.

    It's much worse when the anesthesia is inadequate and you're actually (more or less) awake during the proceedure (like my last colonoscopy).

    But unless you're boardering on 300lbs, I wouldn't sweat it. I've only had one that was horrible, the other 3 I was completely under and while I thought (at the time), that I was awake and aware, I was not (for more than 30 seconds anyway). The worst part, by far, is the gas pains afterwards. Man, a fart has never been so wonderful a thing to hear!
     
  19. eva01 macrumors 601

    eva01

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    #44
    Everyone good luck with your procedures.

    And from what I have been told the worst part of the colonoscopy is the juice they make you drink. Thats about it. However I have not personally had one done so i couldn't say for sure.
     
  20. freeny thread starter macrumors 68020

    freeny

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    #45
    Colonoscopy's are not that bad. I found the groggyness after waking to be the worst part. Now if you want to talk about adventure, go out and get yourself a barium enema! WOW! good times!:eek:
    njmac, welcome to the conversation and congratulations on being the first female to join in on the fun. your bravery is admirable. Hope everything turns out okay. If not, you have a good support group here to hold your hand.:)
    it has proven to be very comforting.
     
  21. njmac macrumors 68000

    njmac

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    #46
    Thanks everyone.

    Freeny, you seem to be coping with this well. Thanks for the thread :)
     
  22. sunfast macrumors 68020

    sunfast

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    #47
    njmac, may I be another to say don't worry about your colonoscopy. I've had a few and they are fine, though I was terrified before the first one. Don't be shy of requesting more sedation or painkillers though if you need - people of course respond differently and I needed some extra on one occasion.

    Apart from that, don't stray to far from the toilet when you take your prep. I was shocked by how suddenly that hit me, though my flatmates all found it hilarious!
     
  23. freeny thread starter macrumors 68020

    freeny

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    #48
    Well its been a while since I started this thread (almost 5 months) and I know alot more about my condition then before.
    To start, its not as bad as I had feared at the start. They have found that my diverticulum are only within a four inch section of my sigmoid colon (the most common area for this condition). As long as I keep a good diet and jump on the antibiotics from the first sign of infection I may be able to go on without any surgery at all, although that is very unlikely and my doctors say that I have about a 70% chance that I will need this surgery in my lifetime. Even if I do need the surgery it can be done laproscopicly and it is a good chance that I could go on without ever having another episode as well as fully recovering.
    As with any desease nothing is for sure and things could change for the worse but those chances are very low. The outlook is not as bad as I thought (crosses fingers) So yes, I am coping much better then before.
    Thanks
     
  24. Plymouthbreezer macrumors 601

    Plymouthbreezer

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    Massachusetts
    #49
    My mothers sister just went through this ordeal - highly frightening for everyone, considering at first, she was stuck in Arizona (she lives here outside of boston) and the outlook was NOT good. The doctors told her if that hadn't gone in and removed the colon, she probably would have died. It was a highly stressful time for our family, considering my mother's sister was in grave condition and thousands of miles away from her entire family.

    The recovery took about two months before she was out of the hospital in Arizona. They said she couldn't fly on a plane, and she was in sever pain for a good three weeks. She lost a lot of weight, and had multiple complications which made it very difficult for her to recover as fast as they had hoped. After two months, she was able to come back here to Massachusetts and complete the first phase of recovery in the peace of her home.

    She just had the reversal surgery last week, and is doing well. Obviously, she's not driving or anything, and she had to put on weight going into the operation. There were minor complications, but nothing like the initial procedure. She's hoping to be able to attend her sons wedding in a few weeks, so goes to show you how a good mental mindset can help one recover faster.

    All and all, not a pleasant experience, but definitely not something that isn't unconquerable. Feel free to ask details/more specifics.
     
  25. freeny thread starter macrumors 68020

    freeny

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    #50
    Diverticulitis, although very different then appendicitis is just as dangerous if not more in some conditions. Having many diverticuli throughout your colon is like having multiple (sometimes hundreds) of apendixes. Each one posing the possibility of getting infected and rupturing. Almost 90% of everyone will get this in their life time but most will never be affected by it.

    Plymouthbreezer, Im glad your aunt is recovering now. This goes to show you the many complications that can happen out of nowhere. She made it past the scary part and now just needs time to rest and heal.

    And you are correct, not fun at all...
     

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