I am only about 2 months post take-down, and I know that I have a lot of being patient and letting things adjust to do, but I am also curious if some of the things I am experiencing are normal...

Since surgery I have experienced the obvious burning, and even worse than that is the severe itching especially right after I go. And I cannot stress enough how bad the itching is at times... it feels like the problem is on the inside and I can't even sit still in my truck. I installed a bidet which does help a little bit with keeping the skin less irritated, but it isn't perfect.  I also have a basket full of wet wipes and creams to help... and so far calmoseptine is the best... although messy. 

Another problem I have is leakage at night. My body is already getting better at holding it, but even the nights I don't wake up to go, I find that in the morning I am having to change my underwear or clean myself. Does that ever get better? Am i ever going to be able to keep my underwear clean? 

The biggest thing I am dealing with is the insane pressure build-up and then that moment of having to hold it for a few seconds before it goes away. That happens to me often and at times over and over again. My doctor thinks I have pouchitis because of that reason, and because when I try to go to the bathroom, hardly anything comes out of me. My stools are getting thicker, but it just kind of drips out of me and hardly anything passes. When I am done and stand up and leave the bathroom I sometimes immediately feel like I have to go again. I have been taking Flagyl for almost two weeks now, and it is really hard to tell if it has helped or not as I still experience all these things. I think the antibiotics are also the reason why I constantly feel exhausted and down in the dumps. 

I am 25 and have had U.C. since I was 12. I just want to feel better and not have to constantly worry about bathrooms and pains and where I can and can't go. Even my scar has been hurting and it feels like there are staples underneath my skin (which is strange). I know healing takes time, but I am curious if all of these things I feel are normal or if something else may help me. I normally am active and lift weights and I am very nervous to do so. I want this surgery to work and be my saving grace long term - but it is hard to stay optimistic. Sorry for the long rant...thankful for any responses! 

Original Post

Hi Bradd, sorry to hear you are struggling.  I'm a bit further on with my pouch, almost 10 months.  At two months I was definitely having a harder time than now. 

I'm back to squats, deadlifts and core training - I may never be as strong as I was before, but at least I'm in the gym.   I've stretched out all the scar tissue and it doesn't hurt anymore  - wow did it hurt when I started core training again!  I can even do 7 mile runs again, though I am slower than ever before.  I've found that I am better off working out early in the day without eating first.  Nothing gets the jpouch activated like running, squatting or deadlifting!  I have not worn a belt,  as the idea of all that pressure on my scar is too scary.   Take it slow, I started back lifting on machines with tiny weights, or just the bar and doing sets of 30-50 repetitions.  I gradually moved back to a more normal pattern.  

You may want to start exercising the sphincter muscles - as a lifter you know how much stronger a muscle can get if you train it properly. 

I found that washing and blotting dry before applying ointment helped.  If the skin was not clean and very dry the irritation could bring me to tears.   The skin does toughen up,  I wash and dry carefully, but mostly leave off the ointment now.  

 

 

 

I am glad I will be able to get back to some kind of activity in the future. I know taking it slow, even with healing, has always been hard for me as I am impatient...And I am glad the scar tissue can loosen up and stop hurting. Thank you for your insight. I will definitely try the washing and blotting dry to help my skin as well. Thank you so much for your help.

Hello, Brad.

A sitz basin might help heal and soothe the intense itching in the inside. You can find a sitz basin on Amazon or in a medical / health equipment store. They shouldn't cost more than $15. Fill it with very, very warm water and lower yourself slowly into the basin (the basin is meant to sit on the toilet rim -- lid up) and soaking your bottom until the water cools, will help heal the irritation or small cuts inside. Sitz baths will also help if you develop fissures inside. This is a result of frequency, acidic stools, straining.

What you're describing is normal for your new pouch. The feeling of going to the toilet as soon as you stand up is normal because your pouch is still learning how to live its new life as a sort-of colon. I experienced the same thing for several weeks, then it got much, much better. You're still healing and every week can bring a new issue, but it should get better as time passes. When I had pouchitis I was given a 14 day course of Cipro, which gave me instant relief from the frequency. I used Zincofax baby cream for the burning, and it worked because it's basically diaper rash!  Girlunky is so right about cleaning with water and dabbing dry before applying creams. Keep dry to avoid fungal infection back there. Try to keep it very simple: sometimes using too many things (different wipes) can irritate the area even more. Best wishes for your recovery.

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