Lots of people have been asking me recently how I am – and to be fair I am walking a bit funny at the moment. So what follows is a bit if a medical update – there will be some details (no pictures) so if you don’t like that sort of thing (bums etc) then thanks for visiting but stop reading now!
So way back in December 2012 I had a massive abscess in my buttock which had to be drained – which is a fairly simple procedure. They cut a hole in the base of your buttock and squeeze all the puss out, then leave it open and it is packed to heal from the inside out. All good (well, a bit sore sitting down). Now over 2013 this abscess recurred 4 or 5 times, and antibiotics cleared it up OK. Then in 2014 it came back and this time the antibiotics didn’t work. Back into hospital to get it drained again, and this revealed a fistula, which then had a seton stitch left in it to allow drainage. Also of note is that in February 2013 my diagnosis was changed from Ulcerative Colitis (which only affects the large bowel) to Crohn’s Disease (which can affect the whole digestive tract). Now I have an ileo-anal pouch which is a procedure not usually done with Crohn’s disease (because it can become inflamed).
So right now I have a hole in my buttock with a surgical thread running through it. The knot in stitch rubs inside me causing pain and bleeding if I walk very far – say round the supermarket. My leakage has increased, as has my urgency in getting to the toilet. The increased leakage has led to a sore bottom, despite various creams. I’m tired and a bit cranky.
In the grand scheme of things however, I am OK. When things do flare up I have to remind myself that firstly – I am alive. My serious attack in 2005 nearly killed me. The pain has been worse. My joints are not inflamed. I am able to work full time, drive and socialise – although exercise is not possible at the moment.
So what happens next? Well, I am having a series of examinations (a pouchoscopy, a CT & an MRI) to determine – what is going on with the Crohn’s, the healing of the fistula and then a treatment plan – which could involve further surgery. The fistula may not heal, or if it does I may get more abscesses or fistulae. Or not.
So friends, if you ask me how I am I am likely to say ‘OK, having a few tests.’ Because it is easier than saying all that.
Many thanks for your patience and support.