News Feed Discussions 3 months post-op and VERY concerned

  • 3 months post-op and VERY concerned

    Posted by dh305 on September 3, 2019 at 7:20 pm

    New to this forum. Wish I had found it before my surgery. Had no idea about different methodolgies, mesh materials, etc. I was given no information by my surgeon (head of surgery at a big hospital, specializing in hernia repairs). I figured I was in good hands.

    I went in for a right indirect inguinal hernia (“small”) and umbilical hernia. Surgery was done laparoscoply. During surgery, doctor found a “small” left inguinal surgery and repaired it.

    About 3 weeks into the recovery process, I was sore, but doing OK and while sitting I sneezed and immediately felt a very intense burning sensation on the left side, inside of thigh. Getting into bed, and in and out the car was agonizing. This continued for about 10 days until the pain finally “broke” and went away completely without any pain management, etc. Surgeon ordered a CT scan in case, but it didn’t show anything. Since then, that awful pain didn’t come back.

    It is now 3 months out and my right side feels almost perfect. The left side still gives me problems, however. During the weekends, when I’m out and about and more active is when the discomfort starts. More like a dull, achy pain (not sharp). Sometimes I feel the pain in the left groin area, and sometimes more in the abdomen to the left of my belly button. Seems like it gets a little better week-to-week, but not close 100%. I’d say 70%.

    Every post-op appointment, my surgeon keeps saying “give it another month”. I have been unable to go to the gym, which was a big part of my life. This has been much more difficult than I could have ever imagined. Everything online says “1-2 weeks”! Everyone thinks I’m nuts and that it’s “all in my head”, but I know it’s not.

    If someone has gone 3 months and still not feeling near 100%, is there any chance of ever fully recovering and getting back to how I felt pre-surgery? Or, is it time to start thinking corrective surgery?

    Any insights are greatly appreciated!

    Good intentions replied 4 years, 8 months ago 4 Members · 39 Replies
  • 39 Replies
  • Good intentions

    Member
    September 9, 2019 at 8:40 pm

    The people in Denmark seem to have the tools and the mindset to better define the hernia repair field, as a whole. But they seem to be constraining themselves to defining mesh repair alone. A true research scientist would compare the results to non-mesh repairs also. Many of the studies, like the “International Guidelines for groin hernia management” are disingenuous, in that they ignore the non-mesh methods. It’s a subtle from of dishonesty.

    The true and honest name for the Guidelines should be “International Guidelines for groin hernia management with mesh devices”.

  • ajm222

    Member
    September 9, 2019 at 8:19 pm

    all true, though i think it’s useful insofar as it simply suggests that there continues to be some reported improvement, however small, even after particularly long periods of time, which seems consistent with a number of other studies. as opposed to the notion that after 3 or 6 months, or after a year, or whatever, you’re basically screwed. to be sure, 3.5 years is a long time to be dealing with any kind of pain. but i have to imagine that pain that CAN be ignored is fairly insignificant. otherwise, you couldn’t ignore it. pain that can be ignored is of course subjective. i’ve had several injuries or surgeries that have healed but would occasionally cause issues once in while, even years afterwards, but they weren’t impacting my life in any way. and all eventually completely resolved. actually, once in a blue moon an old ankle injury from 27 years ago pops up for an hour or two with some mild soreness and then goes away again. at the same time the pain and discomfort i’ve had since my hernia surgery has in fact impacted my life, off and on. and on a survey like this i’d certainly say so at this point.

    and 5-6%, at least in this study, is indeed unfortunate. though i wonder what the chronic pain prevalence is for other similar types of surgeries or implants after that many years. maybe this is pretty typical. just googled one study suggesting any type of surgery can have between 10-30% of persistent pain being reported after a year. that’s pretty consistent with a lot of the chronic hernia pain percentages.

    i’ve always been frustrated that medical studies seem to often suggest that anything greater than 6 months or maybe a year = eternity, or ‘permanent’. i think i understand why, but for a layperson googling things it can be depressing. you see this in lots of different medical studies. it’s always nice to see any of them doing a follow-up that isn’t limited to a year, regardless of the results.

  • Good intentions

    Member
    September 9, 2019 at 8:00 pm

    This is a problem also. Industry is driving the use of mesh, not the results of the repairs. They’re not going to be happy funding researchers that show that mesh is bad. It’s a major problem in all types of research.

    Conflict of interest

    SÖ reports no potential conflicts of interest. KA reports personal fees from Bard outside the submitted work. JR reports personal fees from Bard and Merck, outside the submitted work.

  • Good intentions

    Member
    September 9, 2019 at 7:25 pm

    5-6% still in pain after 5 years, and 34% unknown. And they have defined the pain as “cannot be ignored”, implying that pain was still there for many subjects, but they were able to ignore it. Seems like a pretty low bar. Also, as usual, all mesh types and the two lap methods are balled up in to “mesh”. No definition of the procedures in the abstract. Maybe in the full paper but the authors published in one of the subscription journals so only those who pay can see the results.

    Sorry, I am just supplying a counterpoint. The authors write like the results are good news but it looks like bad news to me.

  • ajm222

    Member
    September 9, 2019 at 6:19 pm

    this is one interesting study on long-term pain and the gradual decrease over much longer time periods.

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29744593 [h=4]”RESULTS:
    A total of 1383 groins were included in this study, based on a 66% response rate to the questionnaire. The prevalence of pain decreased, especially 3.5 years postoperatively. There were no statistically significant differences when each postoperative year was compared with the second postoperative year. However, the prevalence of chronic pain 3.5-5 years postoperatively was significantly lower (4.4%) than that 1-3.5 years postoperatively (8.1%) (p = 0.014). The prevalence of pain that could not be ignored was still 5-6% in the fifth postoperative year.[/h] [h=4]CONCLUSIONS:
    The prevalence of chronic pain seems to decline 1-5 years after laparoscopic groin hernia repair, with a distinct decrease 3.5 years postoperatively.”[/h]

  • dh305

    Member
    September 9, 2019 at 5:17 pm

    Thanks to all! Will definitely take a look! Did back-to-back yard work this weekend and was feeling good. After 3 months, it is crazy that it should be some type of milestone. Today, soreness is back (but not as sore as it usually is after being active like that–so I guess I should take it as progress). This forum has really helped. Rather than feeling despair over that, I am dialing back my expectations and am trying to be patient and taking it week-by-week and looking for any incremental progress. If it takes a year, so be it. As long as I can get back to how I felt before this awful procedure was done.

  • Good intentions

    Member
    September 9, 2019 at 4:14 pm

    [USER=”2987″]dh305[/USER] Here is a link to another forum with more stories from people who have had hernia repair. It covers the spectrum from good to bad, it might help you figure out where you are on the spectrum. As you can see, it’s not a black and white situation, it’s a wide range with lots of variation, made even more complicated by all of the different types of mesh that have been developed over the years.

    It’s been an active thread for over eight years so there are some long-term stories.

    https://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=133353003&page=1

    Here’s a link to an article about healing that might help you understand what’s happening. Unfortunately, inflammation is the double-edged sword that the mesh concept uses to get the mesh to attach to the body’s tissue. The mesh is always a foreign body that the human body will try to eject or destroy. The “game” is to try to find that level of activity that allows the mesh to exist without acute inflammation.

    https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.1177/147323000903700531

  • meshagony

    Member
    September 9, 2019 at 12:50 am

    My original hernia mesh complications began after 3 years, not 10 days, however, be very careful who you choose to do any corrective surgery. Stay away from mesh surgeons and just seek getting it all out. When my complications began, a 2nd surgeon added more mesh on top of the mesh that was giving me complications. This has only added to my issues. Mesh sucks, just find someone to get it out.

  • dh305

    Member
    September 6, 2019 at 5:15 pm

    I wish. Was back to work (desk job mainly) 5 days after surgery. Seems crazy in hindsight.

  • ajm222

    Member
    September 6, 2019 at 12:43 pm
    quote dh305:

    It’s strange. Only thing he’s basically authorized is walking. He knows I didn’t have a recurrence since I had a CT scan after the terrible nerve pain arose, so not sure why he’s hesitant. Hope I didn’t screw things up by NOT stretching and exercising!

    i wouldn’t worry about the not exercising. as long as you’re not in bed all day that shouldn’t be an issue.

  • dh305

    Member
    September 5, 2019 at 8:53 pm

    It’s strange. Only thing he’s basically authorized is walking. He knows I didn’t have a recurrence since I had a CT scan after the terrible nerve pain arose, so not sure why he’s hesitant. Hope I didn’t screw things up by NOT stretching and exercising!

  • dh305

    Member
    September 5, 2019 at 8:52 pm

    You’re right. It’s strange. Only thing he’s basically authorized is walking. He knows I didn’t have a recurrence since I had a CT scan after the terrible nerve pain arose, so not sure why he’s hesitant. Hope I didn’t screw things up by NOT stretching and exercising!

  • dh305

    Member
    September 5, 2019 at 8:48 pm

    You are right. It’s strange. Only thing he’s basically authorized is walking. He knows I didn’t have a recurrence since I had a CT scan after the terrible nerve pain arose, so not sure why he’s hesitant. Hope I didn’t screw things up by NOT stretching and exercising!

  • dh305

    Member
    September 5, 2019 at 8:13 pm

    Agreed. The only thing the surgeon says I should be doing in terms of exercise is walking? I am going to really push for the gym when I see him in 2 weeks.

    Any resources on stretching exercises post-hernia repairs?

  • dh305

    Member
    September 5, 2019 at 8:01 pm

    Thanks for the reassurance. Totally agree. All that the Dr. says is to be walking.
    Are there any stretching exercises in particular that are good for recovery from inguinal repairs, or any resource that you know of?

  • ajm222

    Member
    September 5, 2019 at 7:36 pm
    quote dh305:

    Thanks again. The reason I ask is that whenever I see the surgeon and ask about exercise, he says “give it another month until I see you”. I especially think stretching would be beneficial because I do feel “tight”.

    You mentioned not really being able to do any damage post-surgery. I’ve always been concerned about that because only a few minutes after I awoke from surgery, the post-op staff had a fixation with me urinating before they’d release me. They were pumping me full of fluids and constantly made me get up to try. Probably 20 times that happened. It was crazy. Since I had so many fluids, when I got home that evening, I must have gotten up 3 or 4 times that night to urinate. Needless to say, getting in and out of bed was not pleasant. Of course I was given no directions how to even get in and out of bed. I’ve always attributed my recovery difficulties to the post-op and that evening. My doctor just shrugs and says “the post-op staff knows what they’re doing.” Do you think I could have done any damage moving around like that fresh out of a surgery?

    hard to say but would seem really unlikely. i’m surprised your surgeon has been pushing off the exercise.

  • dh305

    Member
    September 5, 2019 at 5:16 pm

    Thanks again. The reason I ask is that whenever I see the surgeon and ask about exercise, he says “give it another month until I see you”. I especially think stretching would be beneficial because I do feel “tight”.

    You mentioned not really being able to do any damage post-surgery. I’ve always been concerned about that because only a few minutes after I awoke from surgery, the post-op staff had a fixation with me urinating before they’d release me. They were pumping me full of fluids and constantly made me get up to try. Probably 20 times that happened. It was crazy. Since I had so many fluids, when I got home that evening, I must have gotten up 3 or 4 times that night to urinate. Needless to say, getting in and out of bed was not pleasant. Of course I was given no directions how to even get in and out of bed. I’ve always attributed my recovery difficulties to the post-op and that evening. My doctor just shrugs and says “the post-op staff knows what they’re doing.” Do you think I could have done any damage moving around like that fresh out of a surgery?

  • dh305

    Member
    September 5, 2019 at 5:12 pm

    Thanks again. I agree. The reason I ask is that whenever I see the surgeon and ask about exercise, he says “give it another month until I see you”. I especially think stretching would be beneficial because I do feel “tight”.

    You mentioned not really being able to do any damage post-surgery. I’ve always been concerned about that because only a few minutes after I awoke from surgery, the post-op staff had a fixation with me urinating before they’d release me. They were pumping me full of fluids and constantly made me get up to try. Probably 20 times that happened. It was crazy. Since I had so many fluids, when I got home that evening, I must have gotten up 3 or 4 times that night to urinate. Needless to say, getting in and out of bed was not pleasant. Of course I was given no directions how to even get in and out of bed. I’ve always attributed my recovery difficulties to the post-op and that evening. My doctor just shrugs and says “the post-op staff knows what they’re doing.” Do you think I could have done any damage moving around like that fresh out of a surgery?

  • dh305

    Member
    September 5, 2019 at 5:08 pm

    Thanks again. I agree that exercise is good. The reason I ask is that whenever I see the surgeon and ask about exercise, he says “give it another month until I see you”. I especially think stretching would be beneficial because I do feel “tight”.

    You mentioned not really being able to do any damage post-surgery. I’ve always been concerned about that because only a few minutes after I awoke from surgery, the post-op staff had a fixation with me urinating before they’d release me. They were pumping me full of fluids and constantly made me get up to try. Probably 20 times that happened. It was crazy. Since I had so many fluids, when I got home that evening, I must have gotten up 3 or 4 times that night to urinate. Needless to say, getting in and out of bed was not pleasant. Of course I was given no directions how to even get in and out of bed. I’ve always attributed my recovery difficulties to the post-op and that evening. My doctor just shrugs and says “the post-op staff knows what they’re doing.” Do you think I could have done any damage moving around like that fresh out of a surgery?

  • dh305

    Member
    September 5, 2019 at 5:04 pm

    Thanks again. I agree. The reason I ask is that whenever I see the surgeon and ask about exercise, he says “give it another month until I see you”. I especially think stretching would be beneficial because I do feel “tight”.

    You mentioned not really being able to do any damage post-surgery. I’ve always been concerned about that because only a few minutes after I awoke from surgery, the post-op staff had a fixation with me urinating before they’d release me. They were pumping me full of fluids and constantly made me get up to try. Probably 20 times that happened. It was crazy. Since I had so many fluids, when I got home that evening, I must have gotten up 3 or 4 times that night to urinate. Needless to say, getting in and out of bed was not pleasant. Of course I was given no directions how to even get in and out of bed. I’ve always attributed my recovery difficulties to the post-op and that evening. My doctor just shrugs and says “the post-op staff knows what they’re doing.” Do you think I could have done any damage moving around like that fresh out of a surgery?

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