At wit's end

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I have never experienced pain like this before, i can honestly say that I avoid going to the toilet and when i do try and go my subconscious holds it in for fear of the pain! Going to hospital in 2 weeks for a consultant to have a look and decide what to do but I'm really at the end of my tether now. I'm often on the loo for over an hour trying to pass stools comfortably and sometimes when it bleeds particularly bad i get flu symptoms a bit later on and start shivering to the the point where I am in tears! My doctors have been really unhelpful so far and just told me to eat more fibre and drink more water, it has taken me a year and several visits to my GP to even get referred to the hospital. Can anyone relate to this and offer any advice or reassurance??

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  • Posted

    Hi inpain.

    Sorry to hear about your suffering - I completely empathise. I'm in a similar position myself. Have been suffering with a fissure for over 18 months. GP was treating me for haemorrhoids. Eventually, about 2 weeks ago I managed to get a referral to a specialist. I saw him two days ago. He thought it was a fissure but wanted to do a colonoscopy just in case, which I had today.

    Turns out I have a chronic fissure that will need a sphincterotomy as it has progressed too far to heal itself. I was actually delighted with the news as I would have been so disillusioned if he has chosen a conservative method of treatment as I honestly believe that I am past that stage.

    You may have seen your consultant at this stage. Certainly, if you do have to undergo a colonscopy, the procedure itself is no problem. The difficult part is the Klean-Prep you have to drink (4 litres) the days before. It's pretty vile. Having said that though, hopefully it's a means to an end in getting this condition sorted out. If I had to go for another colonoscopy tomorrow I wouldn't mind whatsoever. Hopefully the surgery will turn out good for me. I know there are complications associated with it, but to be honest, the alternative of putting up with this for any longer is simply not an option. I really think only people who have had fissures actually comprehend not only the pain and discomfort but the terrible effect it has on your quality of life.

    Best of luck with it. Hopefully there's an end in sight for both of us!

    I'd be interested to know how you get on.

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  • Posted

    Thanks for the reply ifeelyourpain!

    I saw the consultant the other day who has prescribed me 6 weeks worth of laxatives and stool softeners and a muscle relaxant to apply to the anus to help the fissure to heal. I have to be quite religious about using the cream twice a day for it to work, I am going back for a check up in 6 weeks to make sure it has healed and if not I will have to go for the sphincterectomy like yourself.

    The reason the fissure occurred in the first place is due to chronic constipation, so I have been tested for Coeliac, as it runs in my family and I have other symptoms so hopefully this will be found to be the cause of all my problems and I can't start to put them right to prevent this hellish fissure from reappearing when I finally get rid of it!

    Still in lots of pain but it's early days! Will update you after my next check up. I'd be interested to know if the surgery works for you.

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  • Posted

    Hey inpain. I'm back again with an update.

    I had the sphincterotomy 2 days ago, and thankfully, things seem to be going very well.

    Hey inpain. I'm back again with an update.

    I had the sphincterotomy 2 days ago, and thankfully, things seem to be going very well.

    The operation seemed to be quite short - I was out of recovery and back on the ward in about an hour. It is generally a day procedure, but as I was feeling quite sick afterwards, and had the op in the late afternoon, I was kept in for the night. I was quite weak and wasn't able to eat anything for the night. I made sure I drank a load of water (about 9 glasses) that night but still had no urge to pee. I was quite worried as I know that sometimes people find it difficult to pee, and I had a drip in also, but I eventually went around 2am and have been fine in that regard since.

    The pain wasn't too bad at all. To be honest, I have often been in far more pain with the fissure itself. I took paracetamol that night and the following morning. When I got home the following day after being discharged I slept for 6 hours which was great. When I got up however, I took some of the painkillers I had been prescribed (Tramadol which apparently is one of the few painkillers that doesn't constipate). I had been feeling a bit queasy before I took it and ended up getting very nauseous and vomiting a lot later that night. I’m not sure whether that was an adverse reaction to the tramadol or maybe the effects of the anasthesia. Since then, I have stuck to the paracetamol.

    There was some packing in place after the op which fell out itself when I went to the toilet the night of the operation. I passed some blood and have had a small bit of bleeding but I have a pad on for that. It really is nothing major.

    Yesterday I ate very little, just a little plain Ryvita but drank loads of water and juice, and took my usual psyllium husk supplement in juice. I also took the prescribed laxative along with my usual dos of Mil-Par.

    I feel a lot better today (2 days post op) but as you will imagine, the BM is the big test. I/m glad to say that I had by first post-op BM earlier. It actually wasn’t too bad at all (relative to the usual agony). I would say that it was more uncomfortable than anything. I would put my last BM before the op as being far worse. I have had BM experiences before the operation that were ten times worse than today. If today is the worst BM I’m going to have, then I’ll be a very happy camper indeed.

    So that has been my experience to date. I didn’t want to post until the dreaded first BM was over. I’m well aware though that I’m far from out of the woods yet but so far so good. I’ll be on with a further update as I go along. So far so good though.

    Feel free to ask me any questions you like. Hope your current regime is working well for you.

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  • Posted

    Hi ifeelyourpain,

    Just thought I would update you as I have seen a massive improvment in my BM just lately.

    For the first time in ages I went to the loo comfortably and without much pai at all. I am continuing to use the anoheal and take the stool softeners etc. so hopefully at my next check up they will be able to sign me off.

    Still not heard about the blood test results for Coeliac so I imagine they will be disclosed to me at the next appointment.

    Glad to hear you're doing better, I must say it has put my mind at ease in case I have to have the surgery.

    Here's to a fissure free life! (Hope I haven't spoken too soon!)

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  • Posted

    Hello in pain (though I hope that that title might be a little less apt now!)

    I'm glad to hear that things have improved for you. Hopefully the treatment regime prescribed for you will be enough. Could you call the consultant's office for an update on the coeliac result? I find that it's no harm to be proactive on things like these - I would still be in agony with the AF if I hadn't chased a referral to my consultant and subsequently sought the earliest possible date for the LIS.

    It's been 10 days now for me since the surgery. I really am feeling better. BMs are not painful at all though, at the same time, I can be quite anxious about them though I know that is a psychological issue as opposed to anything else. I stuck to a very light diet for the first 6-7 days and have increased the variety of foods in the last few days. I'm still sticking to my trusty regime which is linseed with my hi-fibre breakfast cereal, psyllium husk supplement twice a day and two doses of dulco-lax per day. Of course, my diet is high-fibre with plenty of fluids and fruit. I'm having no problems with BMs but I'm still afraid of getting complacent in any way so I'm sticking to the above diet as best I can. BTW if you haven't already tried it, you should give linseed a go. I find it really good indeed.

    I hope that all will work out well when you go back to your doctor. I have to say though that I would not have any fear of the LIS at all and my experience of it has been overwhelmingly positive. I know that there is no guarantee that everyone will have such a good experience but perhaps keep it in mind if you're not fully happy with the conservative treatment when you meet your doctor again.

    Regardless of the surgery though, I think that anyone who has experienced an AF will always need to be careful about their diet. Personally, I am convinced that stress played a big part in my AF and that's something that I'm going to have to work on too.

    Let me know how you are doing. Keep up the good work! Fingers crossed things improve for you.

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