Chronic small bowel obstruction from adhesions

Posted by ginpene @ginpene05, Apr 6, 2017

This is my 5th SBO with hospitalizan in 18 months, due to adhesions. No surgery yet, but am considering Small Passage treatment. Last 3 times happened in the last 4 months. This is getting old. Any idess?

Hello @amyp304

I was thinking about you as I know you have worked really hard to obtain a diagnosis and treatment. You last posted that surgery was scheduled for October 7. I hope that went well.

I would love to hear from you. When you feel better, would you post an update?

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@loriel59

I have been having bowel obstructions for almost 4 years. No one could tell me what was going on. I was getting them almost monthly. Worst pain I’ve ever gone through. At one point I lost 17 lbs. In October 2015 I finally ended up in the emergency room. This is when they finally found the small intestinal obstruction. The thought is that they are caused by abdominal radiation I got back in 2003-2004 for Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma.
I sometimes go 3-4 months without an attack, but that is rare. They are part of my life.
The surgeon told me that if I end up back in the hospital, it’s NG tube again. If NG doesn’t work its emergency surgery.
The problem with surgery is that there is a 60% chance of it creating more adhesions, hence I’d be worse off.
I try to each low fiber even though I am a vegetarian. I cook my veggies. I don’t eat any raw. No corn. I peel fruit like apples. Honestly, I feel I never know what helps and what doesn’t. It’s beyond frustrating and not an easy way to live. I’ve gotten attacks on vacation (totally bedridden in Paris!). I am in horrible pain for 24-48 hours. Then I’m sick for 4-5 more days. I feel for everyone battling this.

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Same issues here. My question adhesions are incredibly painful. The attacks last a long time for me. Dr says go liquid but also states narcotic pain meds worsen this condition? Ive been hospitalized and given morphine drip. Everything I eat seems to hurt my tummy. How do we manage pain when it’s severe?

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@sunshine4mary

Same issues here. My question adhesions are incredibly painful. The attacks last a long time for me. Dr says go liquid but also states narcotic pain meds worsen this condition? Ive been hospitalized and given morphine drip. Everything I eat seems to hurt my tummy. How do we manage pain when it’s severe?

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Hello @sunshine4mary, and welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. You’ve come to the right place to talk with people who have similar experiences with adhesions and pain and to get support from members who understand what you are going through. I'd like to invite @tigreyes2004, @thull, and @upartist to possibly share their situation with adhesions.

Mary, You stated that your attacks last for a long time, how long do they normally last and what are you currently taking, if anything, to combat the pain?

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@loriel59

Hello,
I went through over 35 attacks and 3 hospital stays from September 2013 until this July 2017. I suffered terribly. I was getting week long attacks almost every month the last year. I saw many doctors before this. I was told that basically, I had to live with it. I should go to the emergency room and get the NG tube when needed. I finally found a doctor in NYC. He does laparoscopic GI surgery only. He is part of a group. I have no idea where you live. I also going to say he doesn’t take insurance, but if you have a PPO you should get at least half back. He took out four feet of small intestine and a small amount of large. I had radiation therapy in 2003. It was damage called radiation enteritis. I admit the recovery from the surgery is long. I am 5 months past and I am having some “bathroom issues”. The first six weeks after surgery are not the most fun you can have! However, to date, I have not had an attack. Please feel free to respond if you want more information.

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Please give me more information

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When I was 13 I had a bowl blockage and almost had surgery can that happen again after 7 years of not having one cus my body’s felling like it was then when I had it could be constipation but stool softeners are barely working

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@austin202001

When I was 13 I had a bowl blockage and almost had surgery can that happen again after 7 years of not having one cus my body’s felling like it was then when I had it could be constipation but stool softeners are barely working

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I sure feel for you. I struggled for years with constipation and the ONLY solutions I have found are these: Miralax every day, Agiolax (Amazon) every day, 1 stool softener every day, MINIMUM of 1 liter of water every day, the FODMAP diet which takes a lot of study online and stopping the foods that they say to stop, no milk products and lastly being as close to an entirely vegan diet as possible. I eat as many fruits and vegetables that I can always mindful of the low and high FODMAP foods. Personally, I also have to only use Tylenol and not the Advil type drugs since they also constipate me. When my gut is OK, I am OK. It sounds simple but it is not easy. One choice at a time.

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@austin202001 I agree with @donnacarp. Making sure that you are sticking to a good "gut" routine will ensure that you can identify and pinpoint what makes you feel better and what makes you feel worse. You will see that I moved your question to a discussion about bowel obstruction. I did this so you can connect with members that have been through similar situations.

Austin, have you been in contact with your physician about your symptoms?

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@amandaburnett

@austin202001 I agree with @donnacarp. Making sure that you are sticking to a good "gut" routine will ensure that you can identify and pinpoint what makes you feel better and what makes you feel worse. You will see that I moved your question to a discussion about bowel obstruction. I did this so you can connect with members that have been through similar situations.

Austin, have you been in contact with your physician about your symptoms?

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Thank you for that I still go but it like I have to work hard for 10-15 for a small movement that’s what happend last time

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@nancybev

I feel for you both, and can relate!
I think I've finally realized that the problem is more mechanical than anything else, and that it matters less WHAT I eat than what form it's in. I hardly eat during the day, and when I do eat I try to stick with things that could get through a small straw. So I've become the Smoothie Queen!
You can buy good pre-made smoothies, but they're expensive. So I have a bunch of ingredients on hand to run through the blender. I'm going to list them here if it helps; pretty much any combination tastes good and is healthy:
–milk (cow, soy, oat, almond, etc.–they all have different nutrients)

–protein powder–I prefer whey, because it makes things creamier

–Greek yogurt

–bananas!

–frozen berries of all kinds

–peanut butter

–kale and or spinach (you hardly taste them when they're blended with the other stuff)

–canned coconut cream (yummy!)

–rolled oats and flax meal

–firm tofu

–carrot, prune, and other juices

That's all I can think of for now. I'm a vegetarian (not vegan), so that helps. And, not to be gross (but I think the people here will understand!), I keep in mind how various things would taste coming back up again…so meat and seafood would be out anyway. 😱😱

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I thought the diet had to consist of low fiber. Some of the fruit you recommended, as berries, are high in fiber?

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