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Hello! I'm new here. I had my colectomy and j-pouch put in in 2012 when I was 13-14 due to dealing with UC since I was 8. The following year after that surgery and my illeostomy was reversed I had to have another surgery to correct a "twist" somewhere in my small intestine from the previous surgery since it was causing me a lot of pain. Since then, however, with no real other issues, my j-pouch really isn't something I ever think about. My frequent bowel movements and occasional incontinence at night are just part of my life now and I accept that's how I'll always be. I actually stumbled on this website as a bit of a mistake but I was excited to see how many people were active on it and how many questions were asked that I could learn from! (For example, it's very comforting to see how normal it is to have incontinence at night with a j-pouch, since it's really humiliating for me.) I was so young and anxious for most of my GI issues that I really don't remember a lot of what my doctors told me (i'm 20 now) so it feels good to sort of re-educate myself on my own body. 

My question is: Since I had my surgery at a young age but had started getting my periods already, do I still have a higher risk of infertility being a female? Or is that more common in adult women who have the surgery? 


Original Post

They say that there could be scaring and adhesions that might make it difficult to get pregnant. That being said, I tracked my cycle and within 2 months of trying to get pregnant, my husband and I got pregnant! So I think, in my opinion, it depends. They do have a lot of resources out there like IVF and even a few tricks up their sleeve that they can try before IVF. See how it goes for 6 months and I think the rule of thumb is to follow up after 6 months (or a year, if your younger than 35) to get tested for egg production, sperm count, etc. 

hard not to worry ahead of time, but u never know! It could be simple! 

Hi Marn, 

I had my first colostomy at age 2, then moved on from there. Nighttime and daytime incontinence were my life for years until I finally got my K pouch that sort of freed me to live my life the way I envisioned it. 

I tried to get pregnant after getting married at 19...I managed with difficulty but was never able to carry to uterus was folded over. They called it a hemi unterus. No one could ever tell me if it was due to all of the surgery or just that I was born that way.

So, in the end, my fertility was a problem. I never managed to have kids of my own so I raised a lot of other people's. Then I married a man with 2 of his own and I got 4 grandkids out of it.

It is a hard journey for some of us and many never make it but...being a mother is not always a biological choice. 

Sometimes it is a question of being able to give your love to a child that needs it most.

I teach and consider my students like my kids...

I would never have been able to teach if I hadn't had my pouch done. So it was a trade-off and honestly, I had no choice. 

Don't worry about it too much right your life and enjoy it. 



I have to agree with BUBBA1028. I was basically a worst case scenario for naturally becoming pregnant. On top of having the J-pouch, my colon actually perforated and I was/am filled with scar tissue. I had to have adhesions removed because I was getting pulling and blockages. The Dr who did the adhesion removal surgery was actually an OB and he said it looked bad (someone had also left one of my fallopian tubes stapled to my abdomen....) Anyway, after getting older and realizing I absolutely wanted kids, I began to panic about this. I planned my PhD around qualifying for IVF (insurance almost never covers it btw so be super careful about your career/where you live if this is extremely important to you). I would have been open to adoption but my husband has health issues that basically disqualified us from adoption. On to the good news, after spending time freaking out, bothering my doctors about my odds, and arranging my life around future IVF treatment, I downloaded a good fertility tracker app (Glow) and got pregnant the first month I obsessively tracked my cycle. We haven't tried again so I don't know if I just got insanely lucky. I would definitely keep fertility issues in the back of your head going into your mid 20s early 30s but also remember that who knows whats going to happen when you actually try. 

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