Life with bowel cancer

chesfc

Toilet problems!

Hi, have been going to the toilet a lot in the past week which has caused soreness. My gp has given me cream which has helped. I have taken loperamide, but I find I have to take more of these to stop me going. Can anyone suggest an alternative. I've been living with bowel cancer for over 3 years and had a reversal 2 years ago.

Gg k

Hi @chesfc.
're soreness I use plain old vaseline after a shower and after every loo visit. Ive found it beats all creams prescribed or not.
're the runs I can't advise because my situation right hemicolectomy ( 3 yrs ago)is different and the runs is pretty normal twice a day lol.
However increasing soluble fibre helps me - rice - white pasta. The good fibre veg fruit brown bread bungs me up . So I'd suggest trying to modify your diet and see what works for you ,?

Bear G

Hi @chesfc
I found that haemorrhoid creams really helped to sooth this sort of discomfort.
I’ve been on loperamide one or two tablets a day ever since my resection and I know quite a few others are too. Sometimes I need to take a few more and other times I have to stop. Do chat to your doctor about this if it’s different to what you’re doing now.
As @Gg k mentioned, increasing fibre can help too, did your gp talk to you about diet?
Please remember to drink lots of water, always important but even more so with higher temperatures and if you have loose bowels.
Big hugs
Bear
:x::x:

chesfc

Thanks Gg k and bear G for your comments and advice. It's not always easy to know if your doing the right thing as each day is never the same with my bowel movements! I will try the suggested creams and report back. Will talk to gp regarding diet on my next visit. Off on holiday this Saturday to Cyprus, so will take plenty of Loperamide and creams! Take care chesfc.

TonyR

Whilst we’re on this horrible subject does anybody else suffer from ‘leakage’? I’m 3 years down the line and virtually every day have some leakage when doing even the slightest physical exertion. It’s not usually enough to ‘touch cloth’ but when I wipe it’s like I’ve been to the loo!! That causes soreness too.

Gg k
Quote from @TonyR:
Whilst we’re on this horrible subject does anybody else suffer from ‘leakage’? I’m 3 years down the line and virtually every day have some leakage when doing even the slightest physical exertion. It’s not usually enough to ‘touch cloth’ but when I wipe it’s like I’ve been to the loo!! That causes soreness too.

Hi.
I haven't had a reversal but.
I'm wondering if exercises might help to strengthen muscles in the area and help prevent leakage ?
Might be worth talking to your GP to see if it's appropriate/ safe for you ?

Sparkles

@chesfc @TonyR ive tagged you in a previous post of mine to see if any advice there could help but i definitely recommend washing after each motion as im sure (omg sorry for being so grafic) sometimes when wiping it doesnt remove it all (even tho it appears to) and then the little leakage burns our skin (i had trouble with that in the beginning with my stoma) so after wiping a good old thorough washing stops the burning instantly (or for me it did) im not for one moment suggesting that you dont know how to clean yourself 🙄 only what works for me 😊 :x::x:

TonyR

Thanks for the replies @Gg k and @Sparkles 😃 What a subject to discuss! Sometimes it can take half a bog roll to sort out, others it’s not too bad. Washing after each movement prevents most of the soreness but it doesn’t stop the leak! The colorectal nurse suggested pelvic floor exercises but they don’t seem to have helped. Sometimes when I have to go it’s very urgent but most of the time I can control it. It’s just the leaking when I do anything remotely physical that is the most annoying/frustrating thing.
As my wife says though, it’s a small price to pay to still be here!

Gg k
Quote from @TonyR:
Thanks for the replies @Gg k and @Sparkles 😃 What a subject to discuss! Sometimes it can take half a bog roll to sort out, others it’s not too bad. Washing after each movement prevents most of the soreness but it doesn’t stop the leak! The colorectal nurse suggested pelvic floor exercises but they don’t seem to have helped. Sometimes when I have to go it’s very urgent but most of the time I can control it. It’s just the leaking when I do anything remotely physical that is the most annoying/frustrating thing.
As my wife says though, it’s a small price to pay to still be here!

Lol @TonyR.
It's the new normal talking about poo and bowels at least on here. I get where your coming from 're loo paper - have to buy in bulk. And then there's stain spray for the washing but let's not GO there 🤣
Regarding pelvic floor exercises you have do do them regularly and forever and it takes a few weeks at least to make a difference.
They work for me as had poor muscle tone after the runs after right hemicolectomy but i do exercises pretty much every day for last 3 yrs !
As your wife says it's a small price to pay -but still annoying.
PS Vaseline is very good for soreness

TonyR

@Gg k “And then there's stain spray for the washing but let's not GO there 🤣”

😂🤪😂

Chas

A ‘crappy’ subject but I too have to spend time and patience in cleaning myself after Bm. I wondered if it could be a sort of slight bowel prolapse? I’m going to speak to my surgeon about this at next review - not till November though. I wondered if @nurse had thoughts on this.

Terrish

My advice to everyone @chesfc @Chas @TonyR @Chas is always try 2 eggs for breakfast! Discovered on a ski holiday where the hotel didn't serve my usual porridge so I had an omelette or scrambled eggs every day. Suddenly I was effectively egg-bound and didn't need the loo more than 2-3 times a day :) Works for me with leakage otherwise I would spend a fortune in loo rolls.

Gg k
Quote from @Chas:
A ‘crappy’ subject but I too have to spend time and patience in cleaning myself after Bm. I wondered if it could be a sort of slight bowel prolapse? I’m going to speak to my surgeon about this at next review - not till November though. I wondered if @nurse had thoughts on this.

Hi @Chas
A crappy subject indeed but we need to try to reduce our paper consumption and save a tree lol
I asked about prolapse at my last colonoscopy but answer was no.
So I upped my pelvic floor exercises and all improved greatly. I also try to avoid eating acidic and laxative type foods.
I read your profile and see you mentioned prunes. For me such a powerful natural laxative would really make the situation worse. Have you thought that they might be some of the culprits?

Chas
Quote from @Gg k:
Hi @Chas
A crappy subject indeed but we need to try to reduce our paper consumption and save a tree lol
I asked about prolapse at my last colonoscopy but answer was no.
So I upped my pelvic floor exercises and all improved greatly. I also try to avoid eating acidic and laxative type foods.
I read your profile and see you mentioned prunes. For me such a powerful natural laxative would really make the situation worse. Have you thought that they might be some of the culprits?

Hi @Gg k my diet does change dependent on situation, I have prunes occasionally when bunged up! I don’t have major Bm problems but cleanliness is most often a proble. Think I’ll get shares in a bog roll company!! 😂😂

Charlotte Nurse Advisor

Thanks for the tag @Chas,

I think what this thread highlights is firstly how common this problem is after bowel surgery and secondly how potential solutions are different from person to person.

You have probably seen our booklet on Regaining Bowel Control (link below in case you haven't) however this is certainly not the definitive answer to all bowel control problems. It can offer some ideas/advice that you may not have considered but essentially so much of this is trial and error.

For some patients the problem of bowel control is so severe that they consider reverting to a permanent stoma (although thankfully this is rare). It can however be difficult to establish a solution when things can change on a daily basis.

I always advised my patients to keep a diary of what they were eating and drinking compared to what their bowels were doing. It can be difficult to see a pattern without keeping a diary for a few weeks. Patients who previously thought something wasn't a problem saw that when they ate 'x' or 'y' their bowels played up. It's worth considering.

As far as solutions are concerned yes there is the obvious one of excluding something in your diet that you know upsets you but as far as lotions etc. are concerned go with what suits you the best as well as meticulous hygiene after a bowel motion which I know can be difficult when you are having a bowel action anywhere other than at home.

Here is the link to our booklet:

bowelcancerorguk.s3.amazonaws.com/...g_Bowel_Control_A5_24pp_AW_v3.pdf

Kindest regards,

Charlotte

Jorton

Hi @chesfc have you looked into psyllium. Taking this can help regulate movement and provide relief. I used it a lot in the early days

I’m 5 years post resection and I have a new norm now. My main struggle can be excess gas but I eat pretty much what I want