6 Weeks post-op vaginal anterior repair

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Hello ladies!

I had my 6 week post-op for anterior (bladder, cystocele) repair. My outpatient surgery was done vaginally, using my own tissue that supports the bladder. NO MESH or other materials used. The reason I had outpatient surgery was that I do not have health insurance and my doctor felt that I was in good enough shape and health that he was confident in performing my surgery at an outpatient surgical care center, 2 blocks from the hospital. The cost of everything was about 25% of what I had heard anterior repair surgery would be, so obviously that was a substantial saving to us.

I had all of my questions written down so that I wouldn't forget any...my doctor was pleased with that and took the time before the exam to listen. He answered what he could before the exam and met me in his office after the exam to finish answering the questions and inform me of my progress. 

I am telling you this so that you can be prepared at your appointments...if you ask the questions, they will answer them and you will get a lot more information regardless of where you are on your health journey. I did not ask many questions when I was diagnosed, I found most of my information on the Internet. At my 2 week post-op, I was completely unprepared and still had "med head" from the surgery, so basically didn't ask much. I was prepared this time.

My cystocele was a strong stage 3, pushing on stage 4 with a lot of pain pressure and problems with completely emptying my bladder. After surgery at my 2 week checkup, he said that I have some "residual bladder drop". After asking questions today, I now know that means I still have a stage 1 cystocele. The bulge is in the bottom of the bladder vs the top, which is good. He said even after removing excess tissue, pulling the tissue tight and stitching it, it still stretches because it's obviously, not new tissue. 

I have seen many comments about doing PELVIC FLOOR EXERCISES soon after surgery. I asked him if I should have been doing them and he said " NO, NOT UNTIL YOU ARE COMPLETELY HEALED". So please check with your doctor before you start them. Maybe the decision is made on a case by case basis, or maybe the doctor's preference. I don't know, but I definitely don't want to go backwards or undo what surgery has done!

He removed the few remaining stitches that had not dissolved ( for comforts sake😀), and gave me the okay for bending, lifting, and walking. He said that pain will stop me if it's too much. He also gave me the okay for intercourse...my husband is working in another state right now, so I won't see how that goes for 5 more weeks. The up side to that is I have 5 more weeks of healing before I try it out! lol

I still have a lot of pressure in the groin area and problems eliminating if I don't go at the first urge. There is no infection 😀. He believes it's because I am not eliminating completely, so there is always pressure, so he gave me a prescription to use for one month to improve the emptying of the bladder. This should improve my comfort level tremendously! He still wants me up every 2 hours through the night to eliminate and keep the pressure off the bladder area while it continues to heal.

Some days are really good and some not so good. On the not so good days or days I know I will be on my feet a lot, I still use Lynn's garment to give me that extra support so I don't feel strained. The garment was designed for those who cannot or do not want surgery, BUT it gives much needed support to those of us that have had surgery and are healing. How many of you walked around the first couple weeks holding yourself and being thankful no one was there to see it? I know I did and was so happy to discover a support garment so I could walk around and not feel like I was falling out anymore.

Sorry if I rambled and gave too much information, but I know when I first came on this site, I wanted as much information as I could get. I am posting this on more than one discussion because different people on different discussions wanted an update.

I have another appointment in 4 weeks and hopefully all is completely healed at that time.  Thanks for reading and I pray all goes well for all of you, whatever stage of your journey you are at!

God bless!

Trisha

 

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17 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi Trisha,  I am Canadian so there is no cost involved in anything - not even my prescriptions because I am 71 so I did stay in the hospital.  I had a hysterectomy, an anterior repair/partial resection of the bladder and a posterior repair for a stage 4 tear in my rectum 5 weeks ago tomorrow.  I have been in touch with a doctor in my surgeon's office on a weekly basis - I live in a rural area.  I spoke to my surgeon on Tuesday as she has just returned from vacation.  As you say, all instructions are not the same for all of us.  I still have some urinary incontinence which I am assured will disappear between 2-3 months (1 liner a day with about 2-3 tablespoons of urine in all).  I also am NOT to do any exercises of any sort for quite some time - likely not until I can start and stop voiding with no problem.  And I am not even supposed to try this more than once a day since doing so could inhibit the healing.  She said she would be happier if I didn't even try until the leakage stopped.  I have had some constipation issues due to the amount of time it took for the surgery (almost 4 hours) and the amount of work done on the bowel to fix the tear.  I have medication which she said was quite safe to take for the first three months so there is no "pushing" to have a bowel movement.  That would do more harm than using the Senokot-S daily for as long as needed.  I started driving in daytime in the country 2 weeks post surgery and 3 weeks anywhere including multi-lane highways.  I had pain for a few days after surgery and other than the two problems mentioned, I am fine.I started walking the day of the surgery and have increased the amount of time spent walking a little each day.  I am up to between 3 and 4 miles a day now which is what I did pre-surgery.  I went back to work at the 4 week plus 1 day mark (last Saturday).  No problems at all.  I do sleep longer at night - up to 9 hours - where I used to be a 7-hour person.  I do not get up at night at all and there is no leakage during the night.  I have not lifted anything beyond 9.8 lbs (a case of 12 cans of drinks!) for 5 weeks.  That is a real killer because the garbage is picked up at the end of our laneway which is up a hill.  I can't lift it and put it in the jeep like I normally do due to weight.  Many many trips up the hill on garbage day - mercifully only every 2 weeks so hope I can go to 20 lbs when I see her a week from today.  Also grocery shopping is a challenge,  They put the stuff in the car but again, many trips to get stuff into the house.  I put a scale in the trunk of the car and only take under 10 lbs into the house each trip.  My husband is totally disabled and can't help with anything.  My killer is that I get tired doing my housework so today, it took a total of 7 hours to do it when it's normally about 3 but slow and steady gets it done.  I nearly had a heart attack when I heard how much it would cost to hire someone to do it.  So as you can see, I really have nothing to complain about.  I am looking forward to being able to vacuum (grandson - 8 years old) does this once a week for me when they visit and I currently have to pay $35 to get the grass cut every week.  Tends to add up when it used to take me about 2 hours to do the 1/2 acre and do the trimming.  The teenager I hired does a good job on the grass but is not so good on the trimming of the edges.  I never had issues with feeling anything was coming down but will find out for sure next Thursday.  I think nothing has moved or I surely would have been aware of it.  I guess I am lucky I am a fast healer - doctor's words.  I always have been for other surgeries so am not surpised but it's been about 20 years since my gall bladder was removed so wasn't so sure if I was still as good at 71.  I am.  I thank the Lord every day and hope your recovery keeps on progressing well.  I am going to mass tomorrow - our priest has a Latin mass on Fridays which I enjoy - it brings me back to my youth!  And speaking of rambling....I think I will end here and hope everyone who reads our progress feels optimistic that it will get better - because it will.  I will pray for all at mass tomorrow.
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    • Posted

      Hi Nickie! Thanks for sharing your journey with us! Wow, you've had an extensive surgery, but it sounds like you're coming through it with flying colors!

      I understand about the sleep. I have always felt my best at 9 hours, which I am back to now, but I was sleeping 11-12 hours a night and taking 2-3 hours naps some days after surgery (...with the interruption of going to the loo every 2 hours per doctor's orders). Good to remind ourselves it's okay to sleep when you are tired...our bodies do our best healing while we are sleeping.

      Your walking is wonderful...you put me to shame...and you are back to work! I no longer work, but I must get a move on it!

      The lifting has definitely been a challenge. It's a good thing you can do all the walking to take your trash up and down the hill. Could your grandson or the teenager that mows your grass take your trash to the end of your lane for you? I am lucky that my drive is short and my trash can is on rollers so it makes it very easy. My youngest son lives about a mile from me, so he brings his riding lawn mower over to mow for me. It takes him about an hour and 15 minutes to do what takes me about 3 hours to do with my push mower. 

      It's to accept that we can't do things that we are used to doing. Sometimes we need to remind ourselves to be thankful for the job being done by others even if it is not done the way we would do it or as well as we would do it. The point is, it is done and someone else took the time to do it for us! This was always a tough one for me, but I'm getting much better at it.

      yes, housework is a challenge too. Things aren't done as often, but I am catching up. It's not too bad with only me to clean up after. My husband was here for 2 weeks when I had surgery, but is back working in Indiana (USA). I am in North Carolina (USA)

      You are an amazing woman to go through this at 71...I am 55 and you are truly an inspiration to me! 

      I am also going to mass today...not in Latin though. Good memories for you. I will pray for you and your continues recovery as well as all our other friends in this forum! Happy healing!

      God bless!

      Trish

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  • Posted

    Good luck with your recouperation Trish, your positive and throrough attitude will help you get the best results out of this operation. You are right about taking your time before starting to perfrom your pelvic floor exercises. Take it gently!  Also check out a squatty potty (made and designed in hte US), this will help with more thorough elimination of your bowel which will take the pressure of your pelvic floor and stop any straining, which could weaken your surgery.
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    • Posted

      Thanks for your response! Someone else had recommended the Squatty potty and I purchased it a couple weeks ago. Yes, it definitely helps with the bowel, but I feel it also helps with emptying my bladder, which I am still having problems with. It's only been 12 hours since I started taking the prescription to help empty my bladder, but I am seeing a huge difference already.

      Maybe it's all in my head, but I also feel better knowing I didn't cause the residual stage 1 cystocele (prolapse) and knowing what I can do and not do to prevent further damage. I really do feel better already!  lol

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  • Posted

    Hi Trisha,  Thank you.  The Latin mass was great as usual.  I can't go Sunday and our priest has told me that I was in church much too soon after surgery (2 weeks) so if I have to miss one Sunday for family reasons, it's no biggy.  And he needs help with his Latin - lol.  He is a very young priest.

    My 8 year old grandson lives in the city and visits me once a week. My daughter comes with him sometimes but mainly it's just him.  My daughter took me to and from the hospital and looked after me the first week so I was very grateful.  We are not really close - a clash of personalities - but we love each - moreso if we are not together too much.  I have come to accept this even though she is an only child and has herself only one child.

    I had to look high and low to find the kid who is doing my lawn.  He lives at the other end of my rural community so has to bicycle a long way to come.  He is new to the community so I don't know him and am not really ready to ask him to help with other stuff.  My garbage can is also on wheels which don't do well on a steep hill but I usually can mange. And of course because of the wildlife, I can't put it out until about an hour before I know the garbage is being picked up.   Anyhow, it's good exercises (I tell myself).  Having no neighbours is great most of the time - unless you need help!  I think we should move to the city but each time I mention it, my hubby totally agrees - and then is very depressed, very quiet and "down" and twice I had to take him to the hospital for his heart failure.  We have our differences but after nearly 51 years of marriage, I am not ready to kill him just yet....

    I am happy to hear I will get back to my 7 hour sleep per night.  I can't nap at all during the day (except for the first week after surgery where I think I slept most of the time).  I have too much to do.  I could never retire from work - even if we didn't need the money.  I sometimes wish I could just sit around and be quiet but it's not my personality.  If I had to, I guess I would but like my hubby, I would be very down about it.

    So thanks for your words of encouragement and I agree with Stephanie's remarks.  I hope your recovery continues as well and as quickly as it can.  Father said a prayer for you and for all who are on the forum.  Being young, he is very into computer forums so was happy to hear there was a place where we could support and encourage each other.

    I was so discouraged and worried when I first found the forum and the help I got certainly helped my morale, my motivation to get better and my acceptance of my current limitations - something I initially thought would NEVER happen.  So thanks to all who contribute to the forum.

    Keep in touch Trisha.  I do care.

    Nickie

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    • Posted

      Nickie, 

      I just got home from church and groceries and was feeling a bit wiped out...then I read your message! You make me smile and sure lifted my spirits! Wish you didn't live so far away.

      I am having a friend from church, Teresa, over for dinner tonight, so I have to get busy. I'll send you a better message tomorrow!

      Have a blessed day!

      Trisha

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    • Posted

      Hello, sorry it took me so long to respond! Busy weekend!

      living in town would be better for having help closer to you, but I can understand the resistance, I love the country and so does my husband.

      Good you have the help you do and you know the limitations.

      I am continuing to feel better and I think the prescription I am taking now has really helped with the pressure and better bladder elimination.

      hope you are continuing to feel better!

      Blessings, 

      Trish

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    • Posted

      Hi and thank you Trisha.  I am feeling much better each day.  I have not had problems with bladder elimination - in fact that has been better than before surgery.  And the leakage I was having is diminishing day by day - almost gone.  Now the bowels are another story for another day.  Going to see surgeon on Thursday at the six week mark - I have two pages of questions!

      God bless.

      Nickie

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    • Posted

      Hi nickie was the cause of the leakage explained to u as g was not warned of this and have been extremely concerned. I didn't have any leakage before op but it's constant now I am on antibiotics for infection.
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  • Posted

    oh very interesting reading ladies. Helps alot. I have NO issues with stress incontinence since anterior repair 6wks ago; but seem to have constant small leakage of urine all day which I didn't have before. I know I'm emptying fully when I go and my pee'ing habits haven't changed at all post-op. I'm SO worried that instead of stress incontinence, I've now got constant incontinence!!!! I having 6wk post-op check in a few days.
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    • Posted

      Hi robyn I have just asked about this very thing, I didn't have incontinence before op but now have constant trickling, is this normal , do u know.
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    • Posted

      Hi. YAY found somebody else to work this out with! I finally plucked up courage to ring Specialists Nurse day before yesterday. She faxed a mid stream urine request to my local Lab & a script for Augmentin antibiotics to my Pharmacy. I have now been on them for one dose past 48hrs & I'm pleased to report that the discharge is very negligent now & urine trickle barely wetting a small patch on liner! I was changing liner 4+ times per day as was barely containing leakage. I can note that urine looked completely clear when I got sample. Plus had had no UTI symptoms at all prior to ringing Nurse. The Nurse said she would have interim result by 24hrs & lab doesn't culture it unless they see white cells in initial inspection. So as I didn't hear from Nurse yesterday afternoon then I gather urine is clear. I was sposed to ring her to let her know if I was getting better at the 24hr mark, but was busy in our cowshed helping with herd testing during afternoon milking of 520 girls!! I will post updates here & especially once I've had my post-op check which should have been tomorrow afternoon but I have left a msg to change it till next week
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  • Posted

    I too am almost 6 weeks post surgery. My ob did not do an internal at my 4 week check. I am 63. Feeling well, but whenever I overdue it, I bleed. No pain. Apparently, I am able to increase my activities and begin sexual relations. I did have my own tissues used and was anxious about the amount of discharge. This week things have slowed. Sure wish my surgeon had been a woman. Every thing I read has been quite negative. Thankfully, my husband has been supportive. All the best!
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    • Posted

      You don't say what your repair was? Why do you wish your Surgeon was female? 6wks is too early for sex in my mind & thinking back to that stage after my repair. You just have to start trying when you feel ready. It's a bit scary.

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    • Posted

      My Anterior and posterior repair was for prolapse of bladder and bowel. I wished for a female surgeon as mine appeared to be rather arrogant and chauvinistic. Thanks for your input.
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