Laparoscopy for Endometriosis: Post Op Ailment Tips!

A few days ago I posted my Hospital Bag & Bowel Prep tips. Please check those out if you would like to know what I have packed & purchased in preparation for my upcoming surgery.

I have noticed that lots of my fellow Endo sisters complain about Post Op Ailments like gas pains more than the actual surgery it’s self. So I figured I would go ahead and post what helpful tips & tricks I have collected over the last few weeks. I hope you all find these to be helpful and will be prepared before & after surgery.

Lets get started!

Gas Pains OR Shoulder Pain…..

Unfortunately this pain is most likely going to happen regardless of how much your surgeon tries to suck out all the gas. They will never be able to get it all so regardless you will have excess gas trapped in your abdomen. Beautiful thing about this is that it has no where to go. It can’t exit the digestive tract so it has to SLOWLY be absorbed into the blood stream. This can take minutes, hours & for some even days.

  • Immediately after surgery take some Gas-X. I know I said that the gas can not be expelled through the digestive track. However it can’t hurt to try & see if it works! : ) This will of course help if you have any gas in your digestive track.
  • Sip on hot tea with peppermint as soon as you are able to hold down liquids.
  • Drink plenty of carrot juice…it naturally helps absorb the gas!
  • Use a heating pad on the front & back of the area you are having gas pains. It helps to bring increased blood flow to that area & allow the gas to be absorbed faster! It also helps with the pain!
  • Walk as much as you can as soon as you can! Most hospitals have patients up walking within hours of surgery. This helps to move the gas around & out of the abdomen. It also helps to increase blood flow to the body. Once you are home walk a few times around the house or even outside….careful not to over do it!
  • Avoid cold food/drinks…I find that they give me gas. May just be in my head but it could not hurt to avoid it for a few days post op!
  • Elevate your feet & head to allow gas to pool in the center of the abdomen instead of in the shoulders!
  • Elevate your hips and allow your head & feet to rest lower….this also helps to disperse the gas!

Constipation…..

Constipation is something that just comes with the territory with surgery! All the pain meds & General Anesthesia stops you up! Only issue is that it makes ‘going” extremely scary when you are sore almost all over but especially your core muscles.

  • Keep your diet light for the first few days! This a great time to start the Endo diet.
  • AVOID foods high in fiber for at least the first 2 days Post Op.
  • Take a probiotic daily…make sure that it has at least 5 different strains & live cultures.
  • After a few days eat foods high in fiber like prunes apples, bananas & pears. Yogurt also helps to keep your bowels moving. Greens are also great for this!
  • Stay hydrated & drink plenty of liquids! At least 8 glasses per day!

Diarrhea….

In case of diarrhea Post Op this can be very uncomfortable! I would suggest if it is severe or you have a fever to call your doctor.

  • Try OTC anti-diarrheal.
  • Try fresh ginger in boiling water…this can help to stop diarrhea naturally.
  • Chamomile tea is also known to possibly decrease diarrhea.
  •  AVOID soda or things with carbonation.
  • AVOID  dairy.
  • AVOID caffeine.

Nausea and/or Vomiting…..

For me after surgery no matter what meds I am given I am nauseous. Not so much the vomiting but still no fun! I think it has more to do with not having anything to eat than the actual meds. Some articles I have read report that nausea occurs more often in gynaecologic surgery than others.

  • Ask your surgeon or anesthesiologist if nausea meds can be given along with GA. This way you don’t wake up with nausea.
  • Lying flat helps to reduce nausea.
  • Gingerale or sliced ginger in boiling water does wonders on nausea.
  • Teas with ginger in them also work well!
  • Snack on saltines or graham crackers.

Pain….

Of course since this is a surgery you will have some pain. It really depends on your level of pain tolerance & amount of “work” done to determine how much pain.

  • Stay on top of your pain! Take your meds BEFORE your pain hits. It is often too hard to stop pain once it starts.
  • Fill your prescription BEFORE leaving the hospital. In case you have pain on the way home once the hospital meds wear off.
  • Use a heating pad for any left over pain that the pain meds did not take away.

I really hope this helps you to care for any Post Op issues you may run into! I know for one that I am not looking forward to the gas pains but I am prepared to handle them with the tips I provided above.

If you have any other tips please leave them below in the comments!

My Endo Journey begins: Surgery scheduled for August 12th 2013

Update: I had my first surgery consult on June 6th at 3pm with Dr. Sinervo at The Center For Endometriosis Care. Many patients call it The CEC. 

I was extremely nervous on the way to my appointment. In between crazy thoughts of possibly losing a ovary during surgery or not being able to afford it at all. I was also in so much pain. My left side of my pelvis felt as if it wanted to jump out and run. Strong cramping and sharp shooting pains. The awesome part is that I had to walk…yes walk 15 mins from the Marta station to get there. Once I reached my appointment I met the awesome women at the front desk. Got my paper work started and took a seat. About 45 minutes later I was being called back to see Dr. Sinervo. My heart began to pound as if it wanted to come out of my chest. But my nervousness was all for nothing. He was so sweet and so concerned about my health. Which was so refreshing next to the usual docs that just questions your pain tolerance.

We went over my pains, symptoms and medications as well as my concerns. He answered all of my questions…well I only had one. But I am sure if I had more he would have easily answered them all. After we were done talking he recommended that we schedule surgery soon. He wants to do a Laparoscopy, Hysteroscopy, Chromotubation and a possible bowel resection. He strongly believes all of my bowel pains are from Endo on or in my bowels. I was completely calm until the words “bowel resection” came up. I just can not imagine waking up from surgery and being told my bowels had to be re-sectioned. I mean what could that mean for my every day life? But quickly I realized that I was in great hands. And that Dr. Sinervo would make sure I had the best bowel surgeon on hand to handle it if need be.

Shortly after that conversation I got my ultrasound. I found out that my left side has scarred ligaments and that could very well be why I have constant left side pains. He thinks I may have lots of Endo on the ligaments to my ovary as well as my uterus. Glad to know that my uterus and my ovaries look nice and healthy otherwise. My uterus is retroverted but he thinks that it may right itself over time so I am not too concerned. I am extremely relieved to now have a  reason as to why I am always in so  much pain in one area. I am hoping he can remove the scar tissue and Endo and it not return.

I was also relieved that my Chromotubation would be done while I would be under GA-general anesthesia. I have heard horror stories of that procedure feeling like your hoohah was on fire. I think I can live without that memory LOL. Also having the Hysteroscopy while under means I wouldn’t need two surgeries. All in all I am so excited to be having surgery and on my way to a possibly normal life without Endo running it. I am so grateful for everyone at The CEC and for the possibility to afford this procedure. They have been incredibly generous to me and I will never forget it.

Anyone ever have any of these procedures done? How are you now that you have recovered? Feel free to comment below if you have any questions as well.

xoxoxox

Sincerely,

This Endo Girl! ❤