Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Pouch Flu is Like Stomach Flu, Only WORSE . . .

As I mentioned the other day, little Ava had a mean case of the Stomach Flu Saturday and Sunday and, as I feared, it caught up with me.

My, my, my.

I was hoping, to be honest, that stomach flu was something I would not have to worry about following gastric bypass surgery since my stomach simply makes acid to aid in intestinal digestion of food and does not really collect the muck I eat or the muckery that goes down with it.

I used to get at least one bad dose of stomach flu every winter for a long time and it would put me out of commission for 48 - 72 hours. It started in college and continued through about 2004. I got a good three years off in the mid 00s so I guess I should not complain.

This was bad though. BAD!

First, vomiting post gastric bypass surgery is sort of like a dog that is "all bark and no bite" - I had these horrible pains and my whole belly area would twitch and shake and I gagged and gagged and then - minutes in to the process - I'd throw up about 2 ounces of "stuff." It was annoying and painful but I should have been happy because, a few hours later, the trouble REALLY started at the other end of Sean's Digestive Tract (if you know what I mean - winky, winky).

I was on the bathroom floor and/or the toilet from about 12:00 Monday night until about 4:30 AM on Tuesday morning. I had all sorts of issues (including, uh, "leaking") that I was dealing with and a fever that had me CONVINCED that there were men on the first floor of our house stealing our furniture and making fun of my wife's sense of style/decor. And NO ONE messes with Joy's ability to put a room together, dag nam it! Anywho, my stomach sort of settled at about 10:30 AM yesterday (I took a sick day) and I slept pretty much all day yesterday.

I'm sort of back to "normal" (if I am/was ever "normal" to begin with) today but after 48 hours without any food and having gone 24+ hours without any water at all, I'm very tired and dehydrated today.

I called Techia Palmer at Danbury Hospital for some advice on handling my little "situation" and here is what she told me (through Joy). It might be helpful if any of you get the bug this winter . . .

1 - Do NOT worry about food. You don't really need it in the short run.
2 - DO worry about hydration. You HAVE to keep up with your fluids (even when the sickness is at its worst) but do NOT drink water. Water is the sworn enemy of all stomach flues (like an electrical fire - water just makes it worse).
3 - DO drink protein drinks (if you have them on hand - and you should (tsk, tsk those that don't)) for a while once the storm has passed. When you are still going through the mess, drink MILD tea. Sip it. Constantly. NO artificial sweeteners. Avoid teas with caffeine.

So, that is it. I made it through my first post-surgery flu bug and, God willing, it will be at least another year or so until I get caught up in the sickness again.

For now, I'm back to work. I WILL blog about The Biggest Loser today (or tomorrow - as soon as I get a chance). Last night, long story short, was a pretty good episode and it was interesting to see how the insecurities/confidences are all coming to the surface now that the small teams of two have given way and formed just two big teams. I was glad to see the formerly Orange, Yellow and Black teams are all still in the game and I was not at all disappointed to see one half of the purple team sent packing. I can only hope the other half can join her at home soon!


PenLight said...

This post was very helpful to me. I think I got this flu, at least the symptoms are similar and it's the first time I've really been sick since the surgery (19 months out). I'm in a foreign country where they don't understand the surgery that I have had and it's difficult to even explain. So when looking for help on the symptoms I was having I came across your blog and it is so helpful that I wanted to let you know. THANK YOU.

Sean C. Amore said...

Glad I could help you out there, PenLight. I really thought I was going to die when I got the flu so I can sort of understand your anxiety. Get well soon!

Miz Pinky said...

What about Tylenol cough meds anything or just barely with it!! :(

Rebekah Mogee said...

Just got the stomach bug. It finally caught up with me. You're right. It's just a constant nagging pain. I want to throw up but nothing is happening. I'm resting and drinking tea
Thanks for the advice

Jonnie Miller said...

My kids presented with near projectile vomiting and explosive diarrhea over the weekend. Guess who's next!! Me me me me. Talk about pain.

Unknown said...

Dealing with the stomach flu now. First time since RNY surgery 2 1/2 years ago. Horrible, just horrible. Thanks for the info. I knew that we don't get it like everyone else. Seeing others perspective is very helpful.

LGBjustwannahelpsomeoneelse said...

I'm 11 yrs post-op, and until July 24, 2017, minor issues aside, I was doing fine. Also, to my knowledge, I've never had stomach flu. And no one around me has been sick either. Starting Monday, I had 2 foul smelling, light tan soft stools within an hour of each other. Tuesday night, more 3 of the same. Wendsday, the "fun" began. No nausea, no vomiting, no pain, no fever, just copious amounts of diarrhea and exhaustion. All I could do was bathroom get back in bed. I tried to stay hydrated, drinking water, ginger-ale, by the way, neither is good in this situation, (can you say "dumping"), thinking this can't last that long. Thursday afternoon, I passed out twice in front of my elderly disabled mother sending her into a panic of "help us" phone calls to my oldest son and my sister who each left work to come to us. My son brought Gator Aid, another dump causer, but this was new to us. So now I have fluids I am drinking, not realizing I am probably prolonging my suffering. Saturday when the nausea finally kicked in, had my husband take me to the ER. IV fluids and antinausea meds on board, I was let go. It was not until Monday July 31 that it occurred to me about the dumping. All I had been doing was drinking the sugar water and going to the bathroom. Now I know what works best...Unflavored Pedialyte. Like a charm.