Having surgery can often come with side effects or issues most of which will hopefully be temporary but sometimes they can cause more long-term issues. I have a lot of scar tissue caused from surgeries not just on my bowels but my C-sections and possibly even when I had my tubes tied, obviously all surgeries form scar tissue but the amount varies from person to person and even surgery to surgery. Over the years the scar tissue I have accumulated has caused me some pain, some of which I can cope with and others have been unbearable and over the last year it has been more noticeable during my monthly menstrual cycle.
This has presented itself during ovulation and lasts through till I have stopped bleeding; this genuinely affects my day-to-day life and although I can continue to work whilst these “episodes” happen it definitely makes it more difficult. I have been in touch with the GP surgery about the pain and I felt having a hysterectomy was going to remove the majority of the pain regardless of how “drastic” that may seem. I spoke to a GP who didn’t know me (sadly this happens more frequently to the majority of us at the moment) so I had to speak about my whole history again and explain twice about how I can’t have any more children so the hysterectomy wasn’t the end of the world. I was eventually referred to gynecology; well, I say that I was offered appointments at different hospitals to choose from and the only one I could get into was a private hospital.
After missing appointments due to being in hospital I finally saw the consultant and we sat and went through my medical history both physical and mental which is fairly complex (irritatingly) and he asked me what was going on. I felt very listened too which was a nice change! I know that I have a tilted uterus due to the lack of support or “cushioning” as I don’t have my large bowel, but I didn’t realise that the scar tissue could form behind it and essentially stick to the muscles. There is a possibility that my uterus has become stuck to my sacral muscles in my lower back which could be causing the “referred” pain I am getting in my lower back. There is a chance that I have endometriosis which is tissue that is found in and around the womb grows around the fallopian tubes and can cause a great deal of pain.
The consultant said that a hysterectomy could be done but as I have had open surgery apparently most gynecology surgeons won’t do surgery on those who have had open surgery but never really explained the reason why. I was due to have an MRI but as some of my piercings just can’t be removed (anesthetists have tried once I’ve been under!) and I have an issue with small spaces which I learnt from the last time I had an MRI, I also don’t react well to IV buscopan so the idea of one makes me panic. The MRI team were going to feed back this information to my consultant and see where we can go from there.
I personally if appropriate would still just prefer to have the hysterectomy and it all be done with; although I know that can come with it’s own host of issues. For instance, my mother has osteopenia which is the beginnings of osteoporosis and was brought on due to having gone through early menopause so I run the risk of that too if I have the hysterectomy. As I would have to take hormones etc. and go through the menopause. If it is endometriosis then there isn’t really much, they can do other than the possibility of removing some of the tissue which again could lead to more scar tissue.
When I had my bowel removed at 21, I didn’t want children and I also believed I couldn’t conceive and certainly believed the surgeon who said that having a j-pouch was a cure for ulcerative colitis which it certainly isn’t. Ulcerative colitis can be in your rectum and if you flare again after j-pouch surgery can move up into your pouch and create its own version of colitis known as pouchitis. I thought having my surgery was going to be a once and done thing not a case of causing more issues down the line. Certainly not having surgery to remove my rectum and j-pouch to form my ileostomy (which even though has it’s own issues isn’t the thing causing me the most concern) then changing my mind about children and having two with C-sections and the first pregnancy causing a flare up of severe pouchitis. Then being diagnosed with three other conditions that all intermingle with each other and being a pain in my out of order butt! I have achieved and experienced things in my life not possible without my bowel surgeries so it hasn’t been all bad mind.
So with regards to the scar tissue pain around my uterus it’s just a case of waiting to hear back from the consultant and see if just biting the bullet and risking another dose of radiation and having a CT scan might be a better solution or if he just wants to have a look via keyhole and see what the crack is and what can possibly be done about it. If anyone else has been through similar things I would more than happily hear your stories and see if they can either help me in my situation or someone else in theirs.