Reply to "Elective surgery??"

CTBarrister posted:
Kh1988 posted:. I would prefer surgery over biologics at this point in my life, even though I’m not severely sick. I will definitely keep you all posted!

This is not really a sound analysis in my opinion. You are making an assumption that surgery will cure you of IBD and you will never need biological drugs in the future. This is not true in a not insignificant number of cases of which I am one. I had a colectomy as a TRUE elective surgery in 1992, when biologics didn’t exist. Had biologics existed, I might never have needed surgery. My only effective treatment was prednisone. However higher dosages didn’t stem the inflammation and when dysplasia was found in 1991 the surgical decision was made. I then deteriorated while trying to lose weight for surgery to the point where a legitimate elective surgery nearly became an emergency surgery. By the time I lost weight and was in the OR my colon according to my surgeon was dissolving in his hands as he removed it. Toxic megacolon was in my immediate future but for that “elective surgery” which was a legitimate elective surgery that took out a highly deteriorated colon.

I don’t agree with your analysis and I instead agree with your GI who apparently believes the biologics should be implemented as a treatment modality and exhausted (there are many to try) before attempting surgery. You seem to think surgery is a panacea. I would suggest reading the many “this surgery was not what I signed up for” threads on this board, mostly authored by persons who didn’t realize surgery wouldn’t cure them of autoimmune disorder or other manifestations of it and get them off meds. This is of course In addition to all the other things that can go wrong with surgery including Pouch failure.

I will say my surgery was a success because the Crohn’s I have now is much more treatable than the UC which led to my surgery, which spread and engulfed my colon. But according to your criteria or reasoning, my surgery would be characterized as a massive fail, because now I am on Remicade. My quality of life is the reason why I consider it a success.

However I am not the only J Pouch taking biologics to treat Crohn’s or Pouchitis. Many on here are, including our Moderator.

CTBarrister- Thanks for the reply but I DO NOT assume surgery is a cure all. I’ve lived with this disease for almost 18 years. I’ve spent hours and hours and hours researching everything there is to know about this disease, the meds, the surgery. I fully understand that there can definitely be problems after surgery. I understand that people get “re-diagnosed” with crohns. I understand that I may wind up on meds/biologics post surgery anyways.

Theres always gonna be “another drug to try”. I’ve tried nearly all of them. None have worked. I’m sick of the side effects, the stress and worry that these drugs are causing more damage or that I’ll end up with some incurable condition from the meds. Why shouldn’t I be able to try surgery? Maybe it won’t work? Maybe I’ll still have to take drugs after? ....or maybe it’ll be a success? Maybe it’ll be life changing for me and my family. Trust me though, this has weighed on my mind for years. I’m being careful. I understand that surgeons want to operate. I also understand that GIs are in the business to treat. I wouldnt sign up for surgery with the first surgeon I meet. I’d have multiple opinions. 

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