Ileocolic Resection Surgery
Recently I was told I needed to have this surgery and am terrified about it. Would love to hear some personal experiences from people who have had this surgery and how the recovery process was along with how they are doing now…thank you for your replies!
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That sounds very good, @lovablesteven! I'm glad that you found out about her experience.
If it were me, I would feel more confident knowing about that.
Do you know if the ilocecal valve is going to be removed too?
Thank you yah I'm feeling a little less anxious day by day but I have my moments
Not to sure I did not ask her, is that something I should? What does the ilocecal valve do?
It's the sphincter muscle at the junction of the ileum (last portion of your small intestine) andthe colon, first portion of your large intestine. Its function is to allow digested food to pass from the small intestine to your large intestine. It acts as a barrier between the large and small intestine. It prevents the backflow of harmful toxins and bacteria overgrowth into the small intestine. It also prevents food from entering the large intestine before it's effectively digested.
For me, it's caused a real problem with SIBO ( small intestinal bacterial overgrowth) — the resection site (anastomosis) is wide open with no valve so there is no way to keep bacteria out of the small intestine. I do take an antibiotic daily callled Xifaxan which has made my daily life 100% better.
You might want to ask your dr about what the plan is regarding removal of the valve. I have to warn you, many GI's downplay the significance of the IV.
Thank you for that information, I will definitely speak to my GI and surgeon about that.
Since @tiss mentioned her problem with SIBO due to the removal of the ileocecal valve, I looked up a discussion on Connect that deals with this problem. If you take a look at those discussions you will see what @tiss is talking about. Here is the link (at the top of the discussion I suggest that you click on the box and select "Newest to Oldest" in order to get the most recent discussions first) https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/permanent-sibo-due-to-removal-of-ileocecal-valve/
As @tiss suggested, you might want to discuss the matter of the valve being removed next time you talk to your doctor about surgery and see if she anticipates removing that valve during surgery and how she might treat any SIBO problems.
@tiss, could you share how long you have been taking the Xifaxan? Did you start this antibiotic right after the surgery?
I was not tested for SIBO until about a year after surgery when I changed to a new GI. The old GI never mentioned the possibility. I suffered a lot not only due to the nature of the surgery but then the SIBO. I tested positive and was given 3 separate month long trials of Xifaxan but it always returned after a few weeks. Then my doctor explained why the wide open anastomosis with no IV was unable to keep bacteria from backing up into the small intestine. He decided to put me on it indefinitely 2x day. I still had some problems, although was better. He bumped the Xifaxan up to 3 a day and it did the trick. I'm not sure every GI would be open to this but it's changed the quality of my life so much. Still have challenges but manage much better. The key is finding a great, open minded GI. My surgery was 31 months ago.
Thanks for the additional information. Could you explain how they test for SIBO? What were your symptoms that led to the testing?
Your choice of a new GI doc was certainly a good one for you. How did you find this doctor, recommended by someone or did you research to find him?
Bowel irregularities that happen after this type of surgery but just couldn't get better. Couldn't eat much, had constant bouts of diarrhea and a few bouts of bad constipation. Had bouts of urgency but inability to have a BM. Very uncomfortable all the time. I couldn't figure out what to eat. Still have issues with food but that's all trial and error after a resection. The test is so easy. It's a breath test. You drink lactulose a few hours before the test. You inhale from this tube , (which measures exhaled hydrogen and methane that help evaluate bacterial overgrowth) , and hold your breath until the nurse tells you to blow out. You do this several times. It takes a few hours. I got my results I believe the same day,
I found my new doctor by asking several friends who had digestive issues and 1 name in particular kept coming up. So I decided to try him and it has been a completely different experience than with the old GI.