I realise that it has been a little whilse since I did an update about me and my wound, so here goes…
So, the wound where I had my anus and rectum (and internal pouch) removed (proctectomy) has still not healed – now nearly 15 months after the operation. This operation is known in IBD/ ostomy circles as ‘The Barbie Butt’. The cavity is still about 4 cms deep, and I’ve been having near daily dressings since May 2016.
You can also see a little hole (top right) where there was previously a fistula. – this picture is from the end of March.
I saw my surgeon just before new year, he referred me to a plastic surgeon to consider closing the wound. The plastic surgeon said no – because unless we know why it hasn’t healed then it is likely to just breakdown again. His opinion was something has been left behind – could be a bit of pouch, a hair, a stitch – so the plan is for me to have an examination under anaesthetic (EUA) in a few weeks time conducted by the two colorectal consultants who did the excision. Hopefully threy will be able to work out what is going on and fix it, and then it will just have to heal, rather than need further surgery – but there really is no way of knowing right now.
I would be lying if I said I am OK with this. I am not in pain, able to work and do most things – although I have not really done exercise until very recently when a plan was put together. However the almost daily dressing changes have meant leaving work early and catching up and needing to be close to home at weekends (trips away are OK, but day trips are difficult) and of course that doesn’t just impact on me. I have had moments, particularly after Christmas and coming up to the one year anniversery of the surgery where I have been low and teary about it all. I am fortunate to have a very supportive family and friends.
So now I am trying to look forwards – hoping that after this procedure all will heal up and we can get back to normality. The nurses often comment how upbeat and positive I seem to be – I work at heard at keeping that way so I don’t get swept into a downward spiral. So when they knock me out in a week or so, lets hope that is the beginning of the end.