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Suzy, okay, the number one thing for you to do now is to keep your stools soft and self-propelling. Now I learned one thing for myself, just popping in the stool softeners didn't work. I paid the price dearly for the first 3 weeks with stools that reinjured me. This isn't a joke: if you aren't careful now, you CAN break a stitch and have to be repaired. I don't want to scare you, but I don't want you to downplay your problem. My nurse told me this problem exists for the first 21 days, so one has to be careful to keep stools soft and self-moving.

Okay, here's how I solved my problem with the stool softeners not being enough to soften my stools.

I first took 3 stool softeners, all at dinner. It wasn't enough. I drank with them around 15 glasses of water. Still wasn't enough. Then I tried taking them right at bedtime. Didn't work. What would happen is the first part of the stool would be hard enough to injure me, and the last half then was soft. So I figured that what I ate for breakfast also needed to be softened.

So I then took one 100 mg colace at the end of my breakfast, with 2 cups of water. Then at my last meal, supper, I had two 100 mg colace at the end of dinner with which I drank 4 cups of water. In-between meals I chugalugged what added up to 14 cups of water.

Believe it or not, that alone wasn't enough, and I can't tell you how important it was then to add to the colace:

3 cups of hot, soupy oatmeal at breakfast. What I'd do is first thing when I wake up have 2 servings of Quaker instant oatmeal, on the soupy side, and hot, hot. Plus at the same time have a hot, hot glass of 2 cups of water. That would get my stools going, plus add needed bulk to make sure my butt hole wouldn't shrink as it healed. My husband bought me these things to my bed, because if I got up before eating, my bowels sometimes wanted to go, but if I made the mistake of trying to go before having the oatmeal and hot water, I could get half a bowel movement, somewhat hard, and the rest would stay stuck in my butt and hurt me.

Then after I would go with my oatmeal, I would have (and still do) another serving of a package of instant regular oatmeal with a turkey patty and a blended drink of rice milk and a banana.

The reason I split it up my breakfast this, is I usually couldn't finish the first 2 servings of oatmeal and the hot water before I would have to go. But, I found that 2 packages of oatmeal wasn't enough bulk, so I had to add one more package that I would eat after I went. Protein at each meal, like the turkey patty, I found important to help me heal.

Now, the 3 cups of oatmeal and the 3 colace split up WEREN'T ENOUGH. You have to realize this, Suzy, that if you are like me, you have to do all of these things or you will pay the price in pain or injury or both.

Now I found that I had to ALSO have bran with my lunch, because my problem was that the first half of my stool would be too hard that it would hurt me, plus I still had to push some, a big no-no. So I read that insoluble fiber like bran adds weight to the stool and helps it to move along quickly out.

I also learned that if I ate any refined carbohydrates like white bread, my stools would get more solid and possibly hurt me; I still liked to eat white bread or else my stomach got too irritated with all of the fiber, fiber, fiber and softeners!

So at lunch I had and now add at the end of my regular lunch meal, a 1/2 cup to 1 cup of raisin bran, with rice milk as I'm lactose intolerant,and regular milk would give me deadly gas and diarrhea.

STILL THAT WASN'T ENOUGH. I found that I also had to add about 1-2 tablespoons of raisin bran flakes to my supper, I mean put it on top of the rice or anything on my supper plate, not directly eat the flakes. STILL THAT WASN'T ENOUGH. I had to add around 3 slices of apple including the skin, and a nectarine with the skin, as those skins added important insoluble fiber, and, AND, I had to also have with my supper around a 1/4 cup of some kind of lettuce, romaine, etcetera.

If I cut out any of those, I found I paid the price with my stools not being soft enough! Yes, the stool softeners alone didn't cut it; but if I tried to cut back on any stool softeners, I would get harder stools. And if I took all of the softeners, but cut out the salad, or the fruits, or the brans, I paid the price. I found I had to do all of these things together to give myself stools soft enough, and drink 15-20 cups of water!

From what you are saying, Suzy, the stool softeners alone aren't enough for you. What are you waiting for? To get injured to take more measures to soften your stool and get them to easily come out without pushing? Let me tell you, I waited, and I bled and rebled for 3 weeks. I think that is how I injured my sphincter, that one of the hard stools tore it some. If anything, I hope that by sharing with you my downfalls, you can avoid them while it is still okay.

Now, as far as your bleeding---this was my biggest fear, as the first surgery I had,the bleeding turned out not to be normal and I had to have an emergency surgery a week later, as the only stitch in my artery had broken.

After the second repair surger, I did bleed but not the amount I was the first. Still this freaked me out. My nurse told me that it can be normal to bleed for the first 6 weeks with each bowel movement, gas, etcetera.

The point is to call your surgeon up and ask him if it is normal for you, and to not under any circumstance strain or push---even gas out. You can accomplish that by eating the right combination of fibers, at the right times of the day, with each meal, and taking the stool softeners at the right meals in the right amount. I tried the smaller 50 mg colace, and they didn't work at all, even when I doubled them up to make 100 mg. Only the actually 100mg capsules work for me.

It is now 8 weeks for me and I still have to do all of those things. It's no fun, but it is less fun to bleed and hurt.

You know I have AOL internet service, and I find that I can't find MY postings in this topic for hours afterwards, but if I go to Internet Explorer, I can find my post right away. Don't ask me why---could have something to do with the way AOL stores webpages and shows the old one. Sometimes I can't even post from my AOL, and get a message that my number is banned, and I have to go through Internet Explorer to do it. So I now check through IE.

To tell you the truth, I am mortified about the thought that my sphincter might not heal; I worry about it being like one of those fissure horror stories I have read where the fissure never heals. At this point, unless my surgeon is lying, he seems positive I will heal in some months. However, it isn't easy when I have to struggle with keeping my stools soft. I haven't gone more than 2 days in a row where I get the 'perfect' soft stool that doesn't hurt me, or if I don't get enough sleep that can make me bleed when I go from the strain on my tired body.

I am going to try a herb called gotu kola that I read last night online some man used to heal his fissure with. I'll keep you posted if this works---gotu kola is reputed to help heal wounds. You're supposed to apply it topically, but this guy took a couple of pills a day. Normally I don't want to take any herbs, as they can cause side effects and/or interfere with my thryroid medicine, but when you lose all hope of normal healing, you find yourself desperate and will try anything promising at least once.

Runninggal, thanks for the words from your surgeon, that you could have setbacks for up to a year, as this is very helpful to know, and now makes me have a relaxed state of mind. If we all pool together our information and experiences, it will make the experience mentally just that much easier for the next person.

Suzy, I want you to know that I had that funny smell too, and it is normal and associated with the drainage that is also a normal part of healing. Welcome to the Muskrat Anal Gland Club! It will eventually go away when the wounds inside you heal. The drainage is a good sign, a sort of yellowy pale liquid stuff that means your body is healing the surgical site, sometimes mine was tainted with red from the blood. I read a couple of months ago what actually happens to make that discharge from the wounds, but can't recall the details. A photographic memory is not one of my talents.

Suzy, I'm going to employ some remote mind control on you now:

@@@@@@@soften your [email protected]@@@@@@suzy, split up your colace [email protected]@@@@@at breakfast eat 3 packs of quaker [email protected]@@@@drink 2 cups of hot [email protected]@@@@add bran to your [email protected]@@@@and your [email protected]@@@@@@suzy, also add fruits with [email protected]@@@@and [email protected]@@@plus [email protected]@@@@[email protected]@@@@[email protected]@@@you only exist now to make soft [email protected]@@@@@@soft, self-moving stools is your [email protected]@@@@@@@

Okay, end of mind control.

Sherry, yes, I had the hemorrhoidectomy done in my doctor's office. He shouldn't have, and things went wrong. I had gone in there just to have a hemorrhoid banded, and he lied to me and told me it would be less painful to have a hemorrhoidectomy instead, probably because he got $200 more cahs from me upfront for this procedure than the banding.

The emergency repair I had in a hospital, which I stayed overnight one day.

MRSE, the emergency room doctor told me that they used to tell patients to use the triple antibiotic ointment, but then they learned that is made wound healing much slower. If you read the fine print you will see it is not to be used over wounds. I, too, wanted to use it, but my doctor instead told me to use this non-prescription painkilling creme just for the butt, called . The first surgeon had given me a prescription of cream called analpram that was just for the pain and itching after a bowel movement.

Also, I religiously wore a pad the first week of my surgery, and for me it rubbed and irritated my surgery site at my butthole, and caused me problems. However, your butthole might not have stitches, but because of this I didn't use pads after the second surgery. Instead I would use a single soft tissue that I would just gently place in my butt crack when I got out of the tub and the tissue would absorb the moisture as I toweled off and dressed. If the tissue fell out, I would just replace it with another one, until I felt dried out.

Now to walk I had to use a pad for support, but I put this OUTSIDE of my underwear, without sticking it to my underwear, and waddled with it to my recliner or bed.

I used large size 100% cotton balls to gently pat myself clean, but not dry. I took around 5 cotton balls. I wet them with tap water. The first one I just gently patted my butt hole. Then next wet one I dabbed on some betadine and gently patted the butt hold and stitch area to clean. That area was so tender that I could only do very light patting and not efficient cleaning. The other wet balls I used to pat off the betadine, the closest I could get to rinsing. Wiping is a no-no.

I, too, didn't have the odor for the first week that I spent hours in the tub, but then I learned that keeping the surgery site in water so long also could delay healing and cause infection, so once I started limiting my tub time, the smell came.

Suzy & MRSE, one last thing before I end my mini novel here, the surgery inside in the first 4 weeks caused an awful confusing feeling of a combination of pressure and sensation like I had to have a bm, when I didn't after I would have a bowel movement. It was important I figured out which was which, as it was important I didn't try to have a bm when there was nothing there and increase the pressure to the wound site and break a stitch. I learned that after I had a bowel movement, that if I sat or more like leaned back in my recliner or on the bed for 1-5 hours after, the creepy feeling would pass. It's like the surgery site got irritated; but also, my surgeon told me it was normal to have a feeling of pressure inside like that. This sort of reaction after stools kept up for the first 5 weeks. I don't get it now anymore. Now let me go back to watching the Simpsons on TV.
Jack01sport, first of all let me tell you that it is normal to have a yellowish discharge or drainange from the anus after this surgery. THIS IS NOT PUS. It is the normal discharge coming from the open wounds and will stop when the wounds are healed in about 2-6 weeks. That's what my surgeon's post-operative handout says.

But, yes, you can go ahead and use the gotu kola. I read that people can use it right after surgery, and it is recommended to use even up to 3 months after.

Gota Kola has asiatic acid, which is an ingredient that quickens the development of the connective tissue that has to form for wounds to heal.

But, don't get an ointment---no ointment. It has to be a liquid extract with ONLY gotu kola in it, some kind of alcohol, and water---no other ingredients. The official name for gotu kola is centella asiatica, and you might find it listed as this in the ingredients.

You wet a cotton ball or cotton swab and dip it into the herb full strength---you don't make a tea, or dilute the herb from the bottle in any way. You then dab or wipe gently the area with the gotu kola. You do this after every bowel movement.

My butt hole had been cut and sewn, and it was too painful for me to put any inside my rectum until that wound was healed around week 10. Then I started to squirt some gotu kola inside, by using the eye dropper that comes with the herb, just half a dropper full.

How would I do it? I would put the dropper just at the opening of my anus. I would not stick it inside. I would relax my anus and squeeze the dropper to put the extract inside. First, though, I would clean my rectum gently with a wet cotton swab. Keep using the gotu kola until you are completely healed. You do NOT drink this herb or swallow it---it has a different effect than wound healing when ingested. You use it like mercurochrome or tincture of iodine, wiping it on the wound. Also apply it before bedtime.
I figured I would post my story as well. I have found several tidbits of good information from this board during my recovery, so wanted to share my experiences as well.

I had my hemorrhoidectomy on Aug 31. I had been bleeding bad enough before that time to require a blood transfusion, so I had to do something about it. I had hemorrhoids rmoved from 3 quadrants and a skin tag removed. I stayed in the hospital that night and was miserable. I didn't feel that the medication (percocet and morphine drip) was doing a darn thing, and was very nauseous the next morning. I was able to force my self to urinate by sheer abdominal contraction and they let me go home. After that morning sitz bath I was feeling a bit better. Over the next four days, urination was miserable. The only way I could urinate was to lay down in the tub and use my ab muscles until it felt like i had just been in a 15 round boxing match. I went in on day 4 and had a foley catheter put in because I just couldn't handle the pain and discomfort anymore. My first bowel movement came on day two and was a very memorable experience. I felt like I had given birth to a baby orca. But I was very relieved to get the first one out of the way. The next 5 days, especially with the catheter in, I was absolutely miserable. Pain medicine only made me sleepy, and the catheter was uncomfortable enough to keep me pretty immobile. On day 9, I followed up with my doctor, had the catheter removed, some stitches removed, and felt like a halfway normal human being again. That day I consider my turning point day. Since then, I have steadily gotten better. I have been off pain medications since then, but continue to take ibuprofen. Bowel movement still have some sort of stinging associated, but the worst of which feels better after a sitz bath, most of the time it just takes about 10 minites or so to go away. I am still taking metamucill regularly, 3 times a day to keep the stools soft, and I thnik this really helps as far as pain associated with bowel movements. This would be my biggest peice of advice to anyone.

Overall, I think I am well on the road to recovery, and the surgery was a success. My bleeding has completely stopped (save a little dab of blood wiping after a harder bowel movement). The first 9 days were absolutely miserable. I can't lie there. On day 9, I broke down crying and could not see an end in sight, but that changed almost immediately with the stitch removal and getting rid of the catheter.

So hopefully this will encourage those who may be heading into this surgery. Although I may not have agreed in that first 9 days, I am glad I had the surgery, and am feeling much better.

Take care everyone.

Birch





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