View Full Version : Abdominal Adhesions

05-26-2008, 09:03 PM
Hi everyone, I have a question. Has or does anyone out there suffer from abdominal adhesions from any previous abdominal surgeries? I am having a horrible time and can't seem to find any good answers.

05-27-2008, 08:22 AM
I have adhesions, also called scare tissue, on my right abdom wall. My OBGYN isn't sure if it's from the endo or my hysterectomy, but he has offered to remove it for me and told me the longer it's there the more it will hurt. I can not do crunches or anything like that or my right lower abdomine swells up and hurts a bit. He just can't stand it that I went threw all that and still had some pelvic pain.

Adhesions Overview
An adhesion is a band of scar tissue that binds 2 parts of your tissue together. They should remain separate. Adhesions may appear as thin sheets of tissue similar to plastic wrap or as thick fibrous bands.

The tissue develops when the body's repair mechanisms respond to any tissue disturbance, such as surgery, infection, trauma, or radiation. Although adhesions can occur anywhere, the most common locations are within the stomach, the pelvis, and the heart.

Abdominal adhesions: Abdominal adhesions are a common complication of surgery, occurring in up to 93% of people who undergo abdominal or pelvic surgery. Abdominal adhesions also occur in 10.4% of people who have never had surgery.

Most adhesions are painless and do not cause complications. However, adhesions cause 60%-70% of small bowel obstructions in adults and are believed to contribute to the development of chronic pelvic pain.

Adhesions typically begin to form within the first few days after surgery, but they may not produce symptoms for months or even years. As scar tissue begins to restrict motion of the small intestines, passing food through the digestive system becomes progressively more difficult. The bowel may become blocked.

In extreme cases, adhesions may form fibrous bands around a segment of an intestine. This constricts blood flow and leads to tissue death.

That was taken from webmd. I also read that once you develop an adhesion whether threw surgery or from a disease such as endo, you will always develop them after that reguardless of what steps the surgeon takes to prevent them.

05-27-2008, 07:05 PM
I'm currently having abdominal pain and I've had a previous hysterectomy 11/07 with a bowel obstruction that came on 2 1/2 weeks post surgery. They felt that was caused by an adhesion. Currently I've started to have moderate to severe abdominal pain with a negative CT, and negative ultra sound of the pelvis, gallbladder, appendix etc.

My question for you is, did your adhesion show up in your CT?

I'm thinking my continued pain points to an adhesion and so far no one is mentioning that term again now that I have no bowel obstruction. As we all know with all doctors no matter what the reason, Lupus or a simple rash, the doc's all point the fingers to someone else and give you a run around when they don't know what to tell you.

I'm at my whits end with this one and logged on to We Have Lupus and did a search on lower abd pain to see what others have had and not had. Any help is greatly appreciated.

05-27-2008, 07:31 PM
Kimberly- no adhesions showed up on my last ct scan a couple of weeks ago. I have had 2 bowel obstructions since nov 07 and was never told if adhesions were an issue. Like I said in my earlier post, I am not sure if this is the problem, but I just can't think of anything else it could be. The only thing I was told about my last ct was that my anatomy is definitely rearranged because of the surgery, and I could understand the pain being from that, but I was pain free up until about 3 weeks ago.

05-28-2008, 05:30 AM
Thank you for the reply. I just wasn't sure if they could see your adhesions. I've gotten mixed information on whether they can be seen in a CT scan or not. I'm not even sure that is what my problem is but with everything they have ruled out it sure looks like adhesions. Since my CT scans are negative and my lab work is essentially normal it is difficult getting anyone to do anything. In fact I'm sure they think I'm lieing about my problems. I've never been so humiliated in my life from the Emergency Room that I went to yesterday. I was only in the ER because my OB/GYN wouldn't see me, said it doesn't appear to be her problem or withing her system expertise. I think it is her problem since I never had an issue til I had a hysterectomy. I had also not connected anything to be Lupus related either. Then again I guess if it was there would be abnormal signs in my lab work. So I guess if you have a neg CT and normal bloodwork but terrible abdominal pain you are not worth anyones time because you have no medical evidence to support your claim.

05-29-2008, 07:08 AM
I too have abdominal adhesions ...from 3 c-sections. When I had a hysterectomy years later the doc said the bladder was adhereed to the uterus from the sections. When he removed everything down there and loosened the adhesions my incontenence problems disappeared. Nice. My daughter, a PT, says scar mobilization is the key to preventing them ...grab that sucker and move it back and forth and back and forth. it's the creepiest thing I've ever done. Can't stand it but she swears it'll prevent adhesions from forming.

05-30-2008, 06:53 AM
I had terrible pain and horrid periods that would lay me up due to so much pain.

In my thirties I ran a 5k and had so much pain that I felt like I was going into labor. I had a C section in my 20's. My GYN did laproscopic surgery on me, excuse any spelling errors, which was not intrusive at all. However, she had discovered that my uterus had adhered to my stomach from scar tissue. I was a mess inside. I ended up having a hysterectomy.

Five years ago, I was rushed to the hospital with severe stomach pain. The doctors thought my colon twisted dues to adhesions. Amazingly, after I refused surgery, it resolve itself w/muscle relaxers. At first, I was told that if I did not have immediate surgery that I would end up having a colostomy for the rest of my life. I called my fav. doc in the city and he told me not to let them do surgery. He told me I had time and to wait it out. This P-O'd the local docs at my local hospital, but it did go back in place. They decided I had a "floppy or volvolous colon" and it might happen again. It has not happened again, but if I have muscle spasms in my back I take a muscle relaxer. My fav. Doc told me if it happens, that I have some time before it becomes serious. This worried me because I thought, "what if I am on a plane and this happens?". He assured me that I had about 24 hours before any damage is reversible.

Now my fav. Doc told me if I had had the re-attachment surgery for my colon that I would probably have more scar tissue to deal with which would end up w/more surgery. I am glad I did not. The hysterectomy had to be done and all docs were in agreement with that.

So it is a catch 22. Surgery causes scar tissue and corrects it. This often happen with neck and back surgery and is quite common. Some experience it more than others.

So, if this is a concern, laproscopic surgery is probably your first step before anything else. I know I am spelling it wrong but what the doc does is go in through your belly button area with a scope and take photos. Yuck, mine were not pretty but I am glad it was done.

Good luck,