Reply to "Success Stories Please :)"

sandyk posted:
Hey Everyone,

I am new to this site, and just had my closure (take down) surgery a little over two weeks ago. After perusing this site, I have noticed that most stories here are focused on the various complications with the jpouch.

In order to balance out what I have read so far, I was hoping that, if any of you out there would be so inclined, perhaps you could recount some success stories? I would LOVE to hear from people who have had few problems with the pouch. I appreciate that the first six months or so are always a bit tough while the new pouch adjusts to its job, but are there any people out there who have sailed through this procedure? I am guessing if there are people who have, they may not feel the need to join a support group site,.. but perhaps there are some out there. One can hope.

Thank you!!

I had my surgery in 2001 in Rochester, MN Mayo.  At the time I was 22 years old and living with UC, and after 3 years my GI found cancerous polyps.  I had been on EVERY UC meds and had been on the highest amount of steroids possible for 1 year, this sunk my immune system and did nothing for my UC.  I was bleeding profusely and my hemoglobin was rarely above 8 and received 2 different transfusions.  Needless to say my life  was hell

The surgery itself as you know was scary.  I spent almost a month in the hospital because I came down with a fever.  When I left the hospital I was 22 years old and a colostomy bag.  I spent the next 3 months trying to adjust to life and eventually found the bag to be apart of me.  When I went back to Mayo for my letdown surgery, things went better.  The pain and recovery seemed to be a snap.  Weirdly though i spent a week in tears because I 'missed' my colostomy bag.  The doctors said it was the same loss that an amputee has.  

Since my surgery 16 years ago, I spent many healthy years.  I had 2 successful pregnancies.  And am able to enjoy a normal life, eating and drinking and living life to the fullest.  Back in 2012, i developed a hernia on my scar. And than life changed again.  I spent the next 4 years in pain due to scar tissue (also related to C-sections).  I was relived of the pain on a trip to Mayo last year.  It was pretty much my last home.  I had a 10 minute procedure and 4 years of chronic abdominal pain was gone! However while I was there I was there they ran the normal test (scans, scopes, etc.) and discovered a lot was going on.  I had previous battles with pouchitis, which were always treated with antibiotics, however after numerous upper scopes, and lower scopes, ct scans etc. The doctor now has diagnosed me with Crones.  

I am living now with a j-pouch and crohns.  I am now 39 and trying to overcome.  Do I regret the surgery....NO, it saved my life.  My scars make me who I am and I will continue to make progress because I know that if I can make it through that surgery, nothing can stop me!!!

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