Gastrografin Enema. Any advice please.

Well the appointment has come through for the test to check my Bowel after the Lower Anterior Resection. 
I have read all I can find and it doesn’t cover anyone with an ileostomy. The only advice I have been given is to bring a clean pouch.  
Now that’s obvious as I don’t go anywhere without one. 
It’s informative sheet says that I causes the Bowel movements to soften and that patients will need to be close to a rest room. This causes me confusion as there is nothing in my Bowel they will be putting blue liquid in and there will be no solid matter to come out. 
So how long on average will this blue stuff stay there. The hospital is not close to me.

I have bought the necessary pads and pants after reading that it’s possible to leak all over the car seat.

I wish they would be more explanatory in their blurb, it’s really annoying to read that it’s used for constipation.
What a kick in the teeth that is!

  • Hi Artsie,

    The good thing is you are getting closer to the reversal! The procedure is ok, they pump up the fluid and check for the leak. In my case I wasn't warned about what might come out and, although I did go to the loo at the hospital most of it did come out on the car seat. 

    I had waited a year, sounds like you are going to be quicker so your sphincter muscles probably haven't gone to sleep yet like mine had. Start practising the sphincter exercises anyway.  Take your time before you leave the hospital, take a pad and something for the car seat. Time wise I think I had finished emptying within an hour. It depends if the hospital can drain any of the fluid while you are still on the table.

    I had an ileostomy (and a LAR) as well and there was talk of some of the fluid reaching the stoma but it didn't happen for me, after all the join is quite away from the stoma, but take the emergency supplies anyway. When you get home don't be surprised if you pass some old stools as this can flush out any old bits. It is an enema but it wont affect your stoma output.

    And when they say the join is ok it will be another hurdle you have jumped, and you can look forward to the next one!

    Cheers, John

  • John

    Thank you so much.

    I have been really impressed with my care during all the treatment however they just don’t know the after effects.

    You’ve really made a difference to me I would have been really concerned if I saw poo as I thought that was long gone. 

    I will start the exercises though my surgeon has warned me it will most likely be before a years up. He said his list was long and if urgent cases came in I’d be at the back. Which I fully support. 
    My cancer was very low, large and took muscle and wall so I will look up the exercises

    Practice now will help. 

    Many thanks again

    Kind regards 

    Artsie Ann

    Best Wishes

    Artsie Ann 

  • Hi . I was shown into a little private bathroom after mine and told to take as long as i needed. I sat there about 20 minutes all told as every time I thought I’d ‘finished’ a little bit more would come out. It’s a strange feeling having stuff come out of your bottom after so long and there were quite a few mucusy looking plugs - looked a bit like old cigarette butts! 
    The sphincter exercises are described on pages 15 and 16 of this booklet and definately worth doing

    The reversal is a lot smaller operation and my surgeon said he liked to do them as fillers in between the bigger ops so fingers crossed you dint have to wait too long

    Take care

    Karen x

  • Hi Karen

    Thank you so much for sharing your experience,

    I am a little daunted by the thought of being incontinent in the hospital, it’s city based old and like a rabbit warren. It’s very difficult to escape there quickly and it’s extremely easy to get lost. 
    Our other hospital is state of the art and has amazing access however I’m in the very best one for cancer.

    I will find a toilet and take my time. 

    Thanks for the exercises, my surgeon told me he fitted the reversals in and about, there was one in front of me. 
    I'm not expecting it until the summer but be great to ready and waiting so I can fill in any gaps he has. 
    I’m not concerned about the operation I’m a positive thinker.  
    Most of the time. 

    kind regards


    Best Wishes

    Artsie Ann 

  • Hi Crankshaft

    Thanks again for the advice. I had the check today and I was absolutely fine in fact I had star treatment, very simple X-rays and all clear. So that’s the first hurdle cleared. Also I was very wrong about afterwards they gave me everything I needed so got home with no accidents

     Best wishes

    Best Wishes

    Artsie Ann 

  • Hi Kareno62

    Thanks for the advice. I’ve had the procedure done today, Twas plan sailing and was given plenty of time and the necessary underwear to make sure I had no accidents.  All looked good on the screen I asked to watch whilst they did it.

    Best. Wishes

    Best Wishes

    Artsie Ann 

  • Hi Artrie Ann, 

    Good to hear how it went and with a great result. Another box ticked and now you just have to wait for a slot in due course for the reversal.

    All the best, John

  • Yes I was delighted when I saw the screen

    Do I have to have MRI and a colonoscopy as well. I can’t remember now what my consultant said. It’s a blur? 

    best wishes

    Best Wishes

    Artsie Ann 

  • I just has a sigmoidoscopy, the surgeon wanted to check that there wasn't any restriction where the join was. If you haven't had one before it is better than a colonoscopy as I didn't need a full clear out, just a 'local' enema as he didn't want a look at the rest of the colon. No MRI.

    Cheers, John

  • Thanks. Crankshaft

    I’ve got the follow up Monday so I will check. 

    Best Wishes 

    Best Wishes

    Artsie Ann