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Hi All,

The saga continues and too tired to relate it. I think I’m going to add enemas to my daily routine (in AM and PM) and was hoping someone could post their routine for tap water/reusable enemas. Currently using Fleets but want to get away from anything with solute as likely not helping with dehydration. I think warm water tap is the way to go.

Which bottles do you use? How do you clean them, etc? The fleets seem like they would be hard to clean and refill but maybe not?

Thanks much.

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There have been plenty of threads here on pouch irrigation, a small number of which have included specific catheter recommendations. Have you tried a search here for “irrigation” (with or without the word “catheter”)? I don’t think the Fleet bottle will tend to get dirty inside, since it’s valved, so it could probably be exterior cleaned, relubed,  and reused at least a few times.

I started using a fleet bottle with tap water; cleaning it with mild soap and warm water after usage and letting the bottle air dry. But it was hard to squeeze the bottle because of arthritis in my fingers so I turned to using an enema bag. I use about 2- 4 ozs of warm tap water every evening. I’m finding for the most part it’s helping  to empty my jpouch. My GI doctor suggested I do this and assured me that it’s very safe. I stop eating about 4 pm and during the day I watch my food intake and the amount of roughage I eat. I drink water before and after meals and in between (lots and lots of water).  My jpouch is over 20 years old now; about 12 years ago I started having a hard time emptying my jpouch and so my GI doctor recommended I try warm water enemas. I hope this helps you.

Thanks to you both. Can I ask do you/did you pop the whole top of the fleet’s bottle to refill? It feels like it won’t come off/will break if I force it. I’m hoping to get a couple of uses out of each.

And yes, I did search for “enema” and “irrigation” and largely came up with several argumentative threads. Who knew it would be such a controversial topic with lots of people chiming in who don’t use them. I was just looking for basic, practical advice. Not the pros and cons of irrigation.  Thanks.

A nurse at Mayo Clinic Rochester is the one who suggested body temp tap water ememas for my J-Pouch emptying problems.  She said I could do as many a day as I feel I need without harm.  I am currently doing about 4 a day using an empty Fleets bottle.  I cannot use the saline solution that comes in them, it stings like crazy if I have any skin irritation.  Like Jan said, the tip unscrews easily for reuse.  I wash the bottle and cap exterior with hot tap water and hand soap after use, and fill it with hot tap water to rinse out the tip, then let it air dry.  Been doing this for about a year.  A bottle lasts for many uses before any discoloration at the white tip.  My pouch is 20 years old and this is the only way I get relief from the constant urge to empty.   It is so simple and helps so much.

Thanks all for the recommendations. Very helpful. I was using a generic brand where the top would not come off. I bought some actual Fleets and now I see what you all mean by the top easily screwing off! I couldn't understand what I was doing wrong.

Elif, the saline solution still burns my pouch and I'm about 5 months out. It has always burned and a few weeks ago I had pouch surgery and tried a Fleets a couple weeks after and it hurt like hell. Very irritating. My whole perineal area hurt. Warm tap water is much better I think.

@grandmaof1 posted:

I wonder if this would help by me doing this instead of always having the urge to push.  I’m tired of the pain and urge.  Any advice for me of this.  They claim I don’t have cuffitis from my pouchoscopy.  So I don’t no what is wrong.  Thanks so much.

I would give it a shot. I’ve had issues emptying since takedown, for a variety of reasons I think, and it helps when I feel that pressure and urge without being able to go. Helps me reduce straining. I find it particularly helpful in the AM and sometimes before bed. I wish I could empty easier without all these interventions but I think this is the way it is.

I am so happy to have found this thread because I was going to ask how safe is it to use a warm water enema on a daily basis.  I've always had to engage in acrobatics to try to eliminate everything on the toilet bowl, and even when I thought I was finished, I had to go again 5 minutes later!  I definitely eat too much roughage, being that I'm a Vegetarian.  I think that food can take sometimes 30 minutes to 2 full days to come out the other end!
The last doctor told me that  I had a "floppy pouch", which may make it harder to completely eliminate.  I used to get strictures all the time, making it hard to eliminate, but the last doctor said I didn't have any.  I went for PT, but that only helped a little.
Today was the second day in a row that I took a warm water enema in the bathtub, and I haven't felt this "normal" since I was a teen with a normal colon! 
I bought this enema bag kit for $22 on Amazon:
I just use plain warm water from the bathtub and it was easy to insert the tube, even though I can get really tight down there and very irritated.  Soap it up a bit to make it glide in more easily if necessary. 
Well, let me tell you, (and please don't tell anyone else I told you this, lol),  after letting the water fill up my pouch while laying on my back in the tub, it came exploding out with tons of stuff.  It wasn't even like I had to hold it in for a few minutes, which I couldn't.  What a great feeling!  I tried it again to make sure I got everything out, but only a little bit more came out, and that was that.  I walked outside about two miles, and for the first time I didn't feel that "leak" or "burning", a sign that a bit was coming out on its own without my permission. That was about noon time, after eating a hearty breakfast too.  In fact, I ate when I came home about 3pm and I still didn't have the urge to go until much later in the day.   On the average I go between 8-12 time per 24 hours, but I think the count may go down to 6 or 7 at this rate. Or maybe less if I had better control with eating.
Today I did a repeat of yesterday, and went outside again, and still feel wonderful. 
BTW, my bathtub has a handheld shower head over it, so it makes it very easy for cleanup.
So, I was wondering if this could be harmful in any way if done more than a few times a week, every week. 
I was also wondering if the water continues all the way up to the small intestine, and if that could be a problem since that's where everything gets absorbed into the blood stream.

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