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Resection - Very Scared

I was diagnosed with Crohns-Disease in 1971 when I was 21, although I'd had digestive problems since childhood. By the time my doctor realised what was wrong I had an obstruction. I'm 5' 8", usually 10.7 stone and by the time I was diagnosed, weighed 5.7 stone. I had a resection late 1971 when the surgeon removed 18" of bowel. For the next 42 years things weren't too bad, (excepting endless diarrhoea and frequent stays in bed with pain). Still, managed to achieve quite a lot. In 2012 I was rushed into hospital in a lot of pain which after a week in hospital, on a drip, then on Modulen, was diagnosed as (probably), stricture/s. Later after barium follow-through and MRI scan, I was found to have two strictures 3 cms apart. Been putting off another resection for past two years, but finally had to concede defeat and will have the resection, (or ileostomy). on Monday. Remembering the troubles I had with the resection in 1971, (took a good two years to recover from), I am, actually, terrified. HELP!
Welcome to the forum! I'm sorry to hear that Crohn's has reared its ugly head again for you. And I definitely can empathize on being frightened about surgery.

I've had four surgeries (3 resections with strictureplasties and one operation just for strictureplasties) so I understand that having surgery before doesn't always make you less afraid when you have to go through it again - sometimes it can even be worse because of the experiences you've already been through.

What I have learned though is that each surgery is different and just because you've had a difficult surgery and recovery in the past doesn't mean you will again. My last surgery was actually the shortest time in hopsital - and I was really afraid of being there for ages as I had previously - so things can work out much better than we fear.

It sounds like you were in really bad shape for your first surgery with all that weight loss and that is likely to have had an impact on your recovery time. I know that I was the most malnourished (although not the lowest BMI) for my first surgery and that my total recovery time was a lot longer for that one. It took me so long to get my strength back and move around normally. But with subsequent surgeries where I've had better nutrition before surgery that has really helped my recovery.

With concerns about a possible ileostomy I'm not the most qualified to help as I've never had one, but there are a lot of wonderfully inspiring stories on this forum of people coping with them and even enjoying having their stomas because it makes them feel so much healthier than before. I'm sure there'll be someone along to tell you their experience with that - and if you do have an ileostomy, you'll find a lot of support on this forum and help with making that work for you.

Wishing you the best of luck and a speedy recovery!


Naples, Florida
Welcome to the community. I understand the fear. I would be scared if I was in your position as well.

My suggestion would be to talk to others in our surgery forum located here. They can help put your mind and ease and maybe even give some tips to help this time go a little smoother.

All my best to you.