Wednesday, September 23, 2009

When Pain Comes Back

There's a reason why I say my Crohn's Disease is like a ticking time bomb in my abdomen.

For many months I have been feeling nearly perfect. I was even starting to introduce foods I have not eaten for years- like grape jelly (joy!). I was regularly working out again. But the time bomb never goes away and 2 weeks ago I started getting pains again. Aching pain and tenderness with occasional stabs of pain during the day. At first I thought this was a direct result of stress + fatigue + a huge meal of Chinese food + a tenacious cold. But now, a couple weeks later most of those possible causes have been resolved and I'm left with no excuses.

I have an appointment with my GI scheduled in mid-October, but after a verbal flogging by my loving boyfriend and a reminder that I need to be a vigilant general overseeing my "troops" (you gotta love the dorky-sweet analogies of someone who loves you and is desperate to talk some sense into your stubborn brain any way he can), I called the GI today and got on the waiting list for a sooner appointment should someone cancel. BF was right of course... if it's bad enough that I'm in tears of fear about it- then I should darn well call the doctor and try to get in sooner.

Funny how you start to believe you are just fine and you've put this disease behind you... and then bam! The return of pains can reduce you to a terrified ball of misery. I should not have been blindsided by this. When I had my abscess surgery a year ago, the surgeon (a wonderful woman with a fantastic bedside manner), told me that my section of small intestine had major fibrosis (hardening of scar tissue) and would have to come out "sooner rather than later". My Mom and I had exchanged scared glances and asked what she meant by "sooner". She said something like "a year or so". At the time I sighed in relief that I was not getting a resection then and there, but my my my how fast a year goes by. I now wonder whether these pains are the harbingers of that fateful prediction the surgeon made. Am I headed down the road of a resection surgery?

I pray that option is not in my future, but since I can feel the 3-4 inches of hardened small intestine by lying on my back and feeling along the path of it - like a piece of garden hose in my abdomen - I will not be surprised if that's my only choice. It's just frightening.

Have any of you readers had a resection? How do you feel now?