Some of you may have noticed that I haven’t been online anywhere over the past two weeks or so. OK, I know, another excuse for not updating my site, but I think this one is a pretty good, as it takes a more personally tone.
WARNING: Some Graphic Pictures are ahead, view them at your own risk, if you can handle all the bodily gory type of stuff.
About 10 years ago I was diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease, which affects the digestive system, more specifically within the intestines. It’s not a fun disease to have, but it’s been manageable with daily tablets of Mercaptopur.
Yes, I have Crohn’s, it’s not transmittable to other people or anything, but it’s still a pretty major disease that affects my diet, my weight, and my energy levels.
For the past month or so I started to notice frequent aches in my back that wouldn’t get better as time moved on. They started around the beginning of Summer Vacation, so I figured the pain was due to the immense amount of time I spent on my computer at home, or due to lack of exercise. This clearly wasn’t the case.
On Independence Day, July 4, the pain was so unbearable I was emitted to the emergency room. Let me just say here that Morphine is gooooood, very relaxing. The emergency staff couldn’t find anything wrong with me, so they sent me home with a Brett Favre Starter Kit (Vicadin). Luckily though, I already had a regularly scheduled Gastroenterology appointment coming up next week Wednesday, so my Doctor could help find out what was wrong with me.
That day was when he told me I wasn’t going anywhere. I was given a CAT scan, a large abnormal abscess around the size of a baseball was discovered eating away towards the end of my small intestine, I required emergency surgery. (An abscess is basically a globby pile of pus created by the Crohn’s Disease.) If the abscess were to have ruptured, I could have easily gone into shock and died.
The next day, Thursday, was when everything all went down. The surgeon was able to remove the abscess without rupturing it, along with about a foot of my small intestine.
Waking up in the recovery room was horrible though. It was the worst physical pain I had ever felt in my life. But overall, the surgery was successful.
The scars aren’t very pretty either. For one, I received an ileostomy and now have a stoma for excrementation. Basically, it means I have a hole in my belly for pooping from my small intestine:
A bag is placed over the hole so waste droppings can come out without me feeling a thing. The bag is usually emptied about three times a day, it still freaks me out. Luckily though, in my case, this sort of condition will 99% likely be reversible.
Also, here is the incision wound from removing the abscess, along with an ileostomy bag placed over my stoma:
It heals on it’s own, with the aide of a wound vacuum. They kept it open like this to drain the rest of the infection easier. There are also bandaging and foam inserts that must be changed three times a week. It hurts every time it gets changed. I don’t remember what day the photos were taken though, I think it was on the Sunday after surgery.
You wouldn’t believe how much that vac pack values in at.
$1000? Not even close.
$10,000? Keep going.
The system has a rough value of $25,000. Yeah, I know VERY expensive. My family’s not paying for it though, we’re only renting it for the duration of the healing process. And the insurance company is covering most of the costs.
I spent the next week recovering from the intestinal surgery in a hospital bed until I was finally healthy enough to go home.
Obviously now I’m currently able to type and still use a computer while functioning properly, that started today. The wound should heal over a total of eight weeks and we’re still discussing with the doctor whether reattachment surgery is a possibility. Obviously this has indefinitely postponed my project, I’ll update in awhile, but I won’t be working on it for a long time.
This whole sidetrack also affected my school plans for the fall, which I’ll have to work on to see just when and how everything will work out.