Just Diagnosed


Iliostomy surgery in a weeks time....

Diagnosed with rectal cancer T3/4 N1 M0, in nov, radiotherapy x28 as unable tolerate capecitabine. Had my rescans last week and then call from consultant’s sec to book me in for surgery next week. Not had results of rescan yet as Consultant unable attend yesterday’s MDT so seeing me next Fri after MDT meeting and surgery 3days later. Can’t help but think a rush has been put on....what did scans show?
Plus what should I pack for hospital stay and how long normally in for?


Hi @oakie

Please don't worry! I think the scans are partly to help the surgeon rather than anything sinister.

My op was quite straightforward but I wasn't expecting an ileostomy so you already have that advantage (even if it doesn't feel like it at the moment). Don't worry about that side of things because you will get lots of advice, supplies etc from the stoma nurse.

I was on enhanced recovery so was given special drinks pre surgery and only spent 3 nights in hospital. Very little discomfort apart from actually getting comfy in bed, until i realised that of course I could lie on my side.

Things I needed...

Ear plugs
Battery toothbrush
Big knickers (black!)
Head phones, kindle, phone, tablet, charger
Fleece jacket (easier than dressing gown for sitting in bed)
Soft top trousers (yoga?) for going home in

I am sure others can give you more advice and ideas.

Let us know how the next appointment goes. :x::x:


Hi@oakie, try not to put too much worry into this, somebody may have cancelled, or the surgeon allowed a few more slots. And everything that Lizalou has advised is spot on. Good luck, stay in touch.:x::x:


Thanks, just had to say out loud (type) my worry since got phone call. Big knickers, ear plugs and fleece top good idea. Any other advice? What’s enhanced recover ?


@oakie, enhanced recovery programme is where they load you up with carby drinks the night before and two drinks in the morning before 6am. They are full of nutrients and electrolytes that nourish your body in it's starved/nil by mouth state. It also means that you spend less time in hospital, so you limit chances of picking up bugs, developing DVT. The main thing that patients suffered from post op in the olden days was headaches, nausea, weakness, and with this programme they also get you out of bed next day. Hope this helps, I have experienced this 3 times in the past year, and I have to say it is very good.:x::x:


Definitely ear plugs and an eye mask! Hope surgery goes well and wishing you a speedy recovery :x::x:


Good morning @oakie and a very warm welcome to the forum.im sure you’ll find us a friendly bunch and hopefully gain lots of support, information and advice (if you want it)

Well, what a rotten time you’ve had with breast cancer and now this horrible disease! Anyway, it sounds like it’s full steam ahead for you op now and that your getting geared up for that!

I reckon the scan just before surgery are to ensure the surgeon has the very latest information to hand in planning the surgery. I also had scans just before my surgeries and like you, was a little anxious in case they changed the plans to operate! It’s all such a huge emotional rollercoaster isn’t it!

You’ve got good advice on the bits and bobs for Hospital already. I think an extra long charger is good if you have one?
Short sleeved nighties or PJ’s (for cannulas and blood tests)
Easy slip on mule slippers (to save bending down)
Wet wipes for hands and alcohol gel (not forgetting hand cream!)
Moist flushable bottom wipes
Nice body lotion (rather than perfume) to make you feel more human when recovering
Hand held mirror

Can’t think of anything else off top of my head to add to the list!

I’m sure it will all go well and like us all, you need to take that leap of faith! ?

Sending all my very best wishes,



Thanks everyone. Think I will not be able to have enhanced recovery as due to my open surgeries for breast reconstruction and removal of ovaries due to large cysts my anatomy in abdomen is not straight forward! Going take run to M&S for new PJs today and some of other suggestions you have made.


Update today. Seen surgeon this morning re CT and MRI scans. Tumour shrunk post radiotherapy so does not appear to be pressing on womb now. Will not know til opens me and has feel of womb if will need removed too. Second CT has shown “something small” on left lung. They will rescan in 3months before know if significant.
So am booked to go in on Monday for prep and meet stoma nurse etc for open anterior resection on Tues.
Going for walk with dog to clear my head.


I have had an Ileostomy Oakie. think I have mentioned this to you. I made sure I had lots of comfy and accessible clothes to wear in Hospital, a baggy nighty, some PJ's to change and you will need dressing gown and slippers. Other than toiletries and hair products I didn't need anything else. Lots of books to read, though i think I slept for about 4 days, so never got passed the first or second page. It made me very tired and I still have days like that now, 6 weeks on. Listen to your stoma nurse she will talk sense, I didn't have the luxury of meeting mine until after the event. it will seem like the enemy at first, but I promise it gets better. Will yours be temporary or don't you know that yet.
good luck with the surgery. Sending all my best wishes. D