Twisted colon refers to a twisting of a portion of bowel attached to the intestinal tract. The major effect is bowel obstruction, which may cause bilious vomiting and/or severe constipation. This constipation is possible, since the twisting inhibits the fecal disposal from the small intestines to the colon. This digestive problem may be life-threatening, as it continuously affects the intestine wall, triggering the excessive gas accumulation and necrosis of the affected intestinal walls. Seeing those possible risks of the illness, it is important to treat the problem as soon as possible. Colon surgery is often the chosen treatment.
Twisted colon surgery recovery time
There are some possible treatments performed with a twisted-colon surgery. In some cases, the blocked section of the colon is removed and the ends reattached. In another surgery type, the cecum can be attached to the belly wall to prevent it from twisting, while in some others, a tube is placed into the cecum through a small incision on the abdomen. Based on these procedures, two patients undergoing a twisted-colon surgery may require slightly different recovery times.
In addition to the type of the surgery, there are some other risk factors influencing this recovery time, such as:
- How big the surgery incision is. The larger the incision and the more invasive the operation is, the longer the recovery time you are going to require. A surgery incision will be healed completely within weeks, depending on how good your wound healing practice is during the first days after the operation.
- What procedure is done to the bowel during the surgery? The more the procedures is, the longer the time you may need to fully recover. Your handled bowel will not be able to work properly after the procedure was performed. Therefore, you are going to be fasting until the bowel is ready to run the function. Your first fart after the surgery is usually used as an indication that you can start using the belly again. You will be allowed to have some soft foods, instead of merely drinks.
- Whether or not you are having some post-surgery complications. Some people may react to anesthetic medications used during the surgery. This will include dizziness, severe nausea, and vomiting. If you do not have any complications, you will be allowed to leave the hospital bed within 5 to 10 days.
- Whether or not you experience elevating pain after the surgery. Post-surgery pain, especially the one with deeper lesion, can be excruciating. However, within days after the surgery, this pain should subside. If you are experiencing an elevating pain, you might be at a risk of infection and thus, require longer recovery time.
The recovery points above will determine when you are going to be allowed to leave the hospital after a major bowel surgery. Regarding full recovery after the procedure, most people need approximately three to four months to fully recover. You might not be able to do the things you used to do in the first one month at home. However, this will improve within months up to the period you are going to fully recover.
Enhancing twisted-colon surgery recovery
There are some things you can do at home to enhance your recovery time following a major bowel surgery, such as:
- Take sufficient amount of rest. Do not force yourself to do all the chores you used to do before the operation.
- Take some gentle exercises, such as walking around the house. This will trigger relaxed muscles and promote faster healing process.
- During the first eight weeks, avoid jobs which require heavy lifting. This can potentially re-open the incised area and thus, delay the recovery.
- Your appetite will be disrupted after the surgery. Hence, eating little and often is more recommended than eating one big meal at a time. Gradually increase the amount of foods you are taking each day.
- If you are scheduled to see the surgeon after the procedure, never put off the appointment. It is important, since the surgeon can discuss your lesion improvement, your bowel work, and your entire recovery process. Make sure you also take all prescribed medications during the healing time.