On surgeon's advice, going to try the - gulp - daily enema

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tammylayne
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Joined: Fri Jul 16, 2010 9:24 am

Re: On surgeon's advice, going to try the - gulp - daily ene

Postby tammylayne » Sun May 05, 2013 10:07 pm

I think for me the mental part of it wasn't so hard once I realized I just couldn't take things the way they were. Constantly worrying that I was going to cluster away from home, and even if I was home, going 10 -15 times in a couple of hours and being tied to the washroom was just wearing my down. I don't look forward to my morning enema, butt, I find it a great alternative to how things were. For 30 minutes I have to think BM...but for the other 23 .5 hours - I DON"T. That is what makes it so worthwhile. I make this amazing fresh fruit salsa, and I have not been able to eat any for 2 years...enjoyed it today with no issues....nice!

When we went to Jamaica, I took everything that I use at home. I had such a hard time finding my supplies here, I didn't want to take any chances that I couldn't find what I needed. I have my red bag, tubing, lube, antibacterial soap and the blue disposable waterproof pads. I also sometimes hang my bag on the towel rack, however at home now and in the hotel in Jamaica I was able to hang it from the headboard. When I travelled for business I used the towel bar in the washroom, like I used to do at home until I found I could be comfy in my bed and hang it from the headboard. I do have a body pillow that I lay on in the washroom if I need to, for example if I need to do it before my husband is up. The bathroom floor is just too hard for this old gal :shock:

Now this might be TMI...but I am trying to pass on things that have helped me...I found in the beginning that sometimes I am able to hold the water in no problem for several minutes after I am done. I have time to do all my clean up before I need to sit down. Other times...not so lucky and I was ending up with additional clean up :oops: Now I have a good sized amount of toilet paper ready (folded several times) and once I remove the tubing, I place the tissue so that if I leak, it is absorbed vs dripping everywhere. This has made another big difference in the process. I also have a book in the washroom that I really enjoy...I read about 4 - 6 pages, and am usually done and ready to jump in the shower. It really is less than 20 minutes. If I take longer, it is because I am at a good part of the book and I don't want to stop reading. Some days I actually look forward to it if I am anxious to read more :wink: I think this (reading a good book) has helped me to get to a good place as well as I have taken what could be an unpleasant experience and found a way to make it pleasant...or at least not unpleasant....if that make sense....

When I first had my stoma. those first few days I couldn't look at it. I found it really hard to wrap my head around the whole situation. By the end of my first week home...it was ok. At the end of month one, my visiting nurse was actually impressed at how well I was doing. It was just a matter of accepting the situation. I never "loved " Stella the stoma, but I accepted things for what they were and made the best of a bad situation. I feel this is a very similar situation. Not ideal, but now that I see the postive, have accepted the process...I am good with it. I can't ask for more than that. I figure my husband goes 3 - 4 times a day, probably the same 20 minutes as me...but I at least get to read!

Wishing a good week to all the Enema-ites, current and future!!
51 F
'06 Stage 1 CC,
'10 Stage 3 Rectal

"You never know how strong you are until you have to become your own hero."

tammylayne
Posts: 2157
Joined: Fri Jul 16, 2010 9:24 am

Re: On surgeon's advice, going to try the - gulp - daily ene

Postby tammylayne » Thu May 16, 2013 12:32 pm

Update:

I have now been doing this for well over a month - 6 weeks. I have only had one incident brought on by what I feel was a bad food choice...red meat that I never eat and cesear salad made from scratch (raw egg, anchovies). I have actually had 2 days that I didn't do an enema, and no BMs or accidents on those days.

I even went on an hour bus trip with my work and had no issues. In the past I would have had to find an excuse not to go.

I feel right now like my life is a 9 out of 10 for quality in this area, maybe even 10/10. 2 months ago...I was about a 3/10.

Big improvement. :)
51 F
'06 Stage 1 CC,
'10 Stage 3 Rectal

"You never know how strong you are until you have to become your own hero."

MelissaB

Re: On surgeon's advice, going to try the - gulp - daily ene

Postby MelissaB » Fri May 17, 2013 9:09 pm

Raym: Thanks for the MD Anderson link. I needed this along time ago.

ams5796
Posts: 2265
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Re: On surgeon's advice, going to try the - gulp - daily ene

Postby ams5796 » Sun May 19, 2013 11:24 am

Tammylayne, that sounds so great! A 10 out of 10, wow! I started it up again (with your inspiration)
and am having really good results. Hopefully, it will continue! :D



Ann
Stage 3C (or 4?) Rectal Cancer 01/07
2/10 lung mets
3/11 VATS
6/11 VATS
7/13 lung met
2/14 SBRT
NED 8/14
5/17 scan and MRI found treated spine met

tammylayne
Posts: 2157
Joined: Fri Jul 16, 2010 9:24 am

Re: On surgeon's advice, going to try the - gulp - daily ene

Postby tammylayne » Sun May 19, 2013 6:49 pm

Oh Ann....I so hope it works for you this time!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I really am finding it as how I am getting my life back. I thought about not doing one today, feeling lazy, figured it is Sunday and i am not going anywhere....then I thought, huh,,,,it really isn't a big deal....I am at a good part of my book, it only takes 30 minutes and then i can carry on with my life....so I did it, even though I really could have skipped it. I am just so happy with how I feel for the other 23 1/2 hours of my day, that I am rally ok with what I have to do for those 30 minutes!!!!!

I am rooting for you!!!!!! Maybe this will help....once I am done....I lean forward a few times so my tummy is pressed into my lap. I then release alot of trapped air...ALOT....but I find I have no gas pains after, as a matter of fact, I RARELY ever pass gas anymore, maybe once or twice after dinner, bt nothing like before!!!!

Good luck, let me know how it goes!
51 F
'06 Stage 1 CC,
'10 Stage 3 Rectal

"You never know how strong you are until you have to become your own hero."

tnolte@woh.rr.com

Re: On surgeon's advice, going to try the - gulp - daily ene

Postby tnolte@woh.rr.com » Fri May 24, 2013 5:57 am

I have used the 1 liter water enema for 18 months now. I do it first thing in the morning(5AM) and it takes about 30-45 minutes to complete. After that I'm normally good for 48 hours. Nothing at all in between. It's become second nature to me. I've done it in motel rooms and in foreign countries(but not with tap water).

62M
stage 3A rectal cancer 2009

tammylayne
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Re: On surgeon's advice, going to try the - gulp - daily ene

Postby tammylayne » Sun Jun 02, 2013 9:43 pm

Today I got confirmation that the daily enema really is the right thing for me. Due to circumstances beyond my control, I could not do one Saturday morning, By the time I was able to, it was Saturday night, so I decided to just pick it up this am. Slept in,,,didn't get to do it until about 1, so it had been 50 hours since an enema.

I have now gone about 25 - 30 times, just like before I started the enema. My bottom is on fire, and I have been stuck in the house for the past 9 hours, didn't dare go out. This is exactly what things were like for me before the daily enema. I have promissed myself that no matter what, I will not let this happen again, I will make sure I am able to do it every morning, as it makes my life so much better. 30 minutes and done, and no butt fires to try and put out.

Today sucked. Tomorrow will be better.
51 F
'06 Stage 1 CC,
'10 Stage 3 Rectal

"You never know how strong you are until you have to become your own hero."

northern light
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Re: On surgeon's advice, going to try the - gulp - daily ene

Postby northern light » Wed Mar 19, 2014 11:01 am

I realise this is a relatively old thread, but I just want to vouch for the benefits of the “daily enema” for anyone who has undergone surgery and treatment for rectal cancer.

Like many other rectal cancer patients, I underwent an LAR operation with a straight connect and although I am obviously extremely grateful to now be cancer free (3 ½ years later), my quality of life has been severely impacted by the removal of the rectum (and probably the damage from the radiation). I would find that some days I could rate my bowel function at 8/10 but others it would be as low as a 2/10, particularly when the clustering got really bad. Even on the good days, when I was out and about, I would always be searching for a restroom and terrified in case the urgency got the better of me.

I had lost count of the number of social invitations I had turned down because of my toilet issues and it had even affected my career as I would resist attending meetings outside my own office and would definitely not want to travel overseas. I spent the last 3 years looking for a magic pill that was going to improve my quality of life (fibre, immodium, Questran, low residue diet etc) but without any real and consistent success.

I have been a regular reader of this forum since I was originally diagnosed (although I have only posted a few times) and came across this topic a few months back during a particularly bad period when my bowels appeared to have gone into meltdown. I was particularly drawn to the improvement described by Tammylayne and after doing some more research, I decided I had nothing to lose.

I have now been doing the daily enema for 2 months but the improvement was evident from day one. It takes me approx 30 minutes each morning (which obviously does involve getting up earlier) but it is a sacrifice I am now happy to make. I use about 1 ½ litres of plain body temperature water with a little seasalt which take 5 minutes to set up, 5 minutes to administer, 15-20 minutes to evacuate / empty and 5 minutes to clean up. I use the 15 minutes when sitting on the loo to read a book or catch up on the news on the ipad.

After it is done I no longer think about the toilet for at least 12 hours. I will then have a bowel movement between 12 and 15 hours after administering the enema but it is over and done with in one trip to the restroom i.e. no clustering. I am back eating whatever I want, whenever I want and think my diet has actually improved as I can now opt for healthier options such as fruit and salad.

I realise that the daily enema may not be for everyone but I would honestly say I was probably running at around 60% efficiency and this has propelled me to about 95% (the last 5% being the fact that I have to spend 30 minutes doing an enema each morning). It has completely changed my quality of life for the better and it feels like I am finally putting the cancer behind me and getting on with enjoying what life can throw at me.

So, a big thank you to Tammylayne and the others who have posted their trials and success with this technique and I would thoroughly encourage anyone who is suffering persistent bowel issues to give it a go.

Nothernlight
Diagnosed Stage 3b Rectal Cancer Nov'10
Radiation / Xeloda
ULAR Apr'11
Finished Folfox Nov'11
Local recurrence Apr'15
Targeted radiation May'15 - full metabolic response
Xeloda Jul'15 - Jan'16
Apr'16 PET shows tumor active
Folfiri May'16

tammylayne
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Re: On surgeon's advice, going to try the - gulp - daily ene

Postby tammylayne » Wed Mar 19, 2014 12:02 pm

So happy to read of your success Northerlight!

Reading your post I felt like I had written it :lol: I agree....the daily enema may not be for everyone, but for some of us, it is the answer we were looking for. My surgeon and my gastrointerologist are both totally supportive of me doing this....and I think that is a big help as well. All I know is that I feel better now that for the past 7 years when it comes to washroom issues...like you...I do my thing every morning - takes about 30 minutes from set up to clean up....and I can FORGET about everything to do with it for 24 - 30 hours. It just works!!!!!!!!

Thank you for spreading some more positive stories....trying the daily enema can be very intimidating, butt I think if those of us having success come forward, maybe e few more people will find it to be their solution too....and that would be a wonderful thing!!!!!!!

If anyone has ANY questions...please ask, post or PM me. I will tell you anything you want to know :oops: I put my pride in my back pocket many years ago...
51 F
'06 Stage 1 CC,
'10 Stage 3 Rectal

"You never know how strong you are until you have to become your own hero."

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beccab1
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Re: On surgeon's advice, going to try the - gulp - daily ene

Postby beccab1 » Wed Mar 19, 2014 12:32 pm

I was just thinking about posting on this thread yesterday. Eric is still doing the daily enema and it's definitely been a big improvement for him. His only issue that still remains is cramping. Anyone have bad cramps after? He's been doing his at night with 2 liters of warm water. He does buy distilled water in gallon sizes but I can't imagine that would matter. I'm curious about adding salt and what that would do. Also, every so often, he doesn't empty completely and will have trouble throughout the night. Not sure what that is about either.

Any suggestions would be great. Glad to see others having such success!!!
My husband, Eric, dx @ age 35
Stage IIIb RC (T3N1M0), 3/10
Finished 6 weeks rad/xeloda 5/10
Surgery 7/10, Lap LAR, Colonic J Pouch, Temp. Ileostomy
ypT2N0M0
Xelox (5 rounds)
Takedown 12/13/10
Clear CT - 2011-2015

Peloton
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Re: On surgeon's advice, going to try the - gulp - daily ene

Postby Peloton » Wed Mar 19, 2014 6:53 pm

beccab1 wrote: I'm curious about adding salt and what that would do. Also, every so often, he doesn't empty completely and will have trouble throughout the night. Not sure what that is about either.


Regarding salt, I've mixed in a small amount of Epson salt at times (I use warm tap water). I liked it, but the reason I stopped is because it was more time consuming. I do my enema in the morning and want to get it over with as quickly as possible.

As for not completely emptying out every so often, that happens to me too. Not sure what it's about. I've tried to discern a connection with a particular type of food, but haven't been able to do so. At this point, it's a rare occurrence (maybe once a month, and probably not even that much), so I haven't put much effort into addressing it.

The daily enema has dramatically improved my post-reversal life. Having to deal every once in a while with the uncomfortableness that results from not completely emptying out pales in comparison to the issues I was having before I incorporated the routine.
Diagnosed Stage 3 rc; 30 y/o M - 8/10
Chemo Rad - 8/10 through 10/10
FOFLOX 4 rounds - 10/10 through 12/10
LAR - 1/11; 12 out of 13 nodes positive, stage 3c; T4N2M0; temp ileo
FOXFOX 8 rounds, 6 w/ Avastin - 2/11 through 5/11
Ileo reversed - 7/11
NED

Cb75
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Re: On surgeon's advice, going to try the - gulp - daily ene

Postby Cb75 » Wed Mar 19, 2014 7:48 pm

Has anyone tried coffee enemas?
39y female Stage IV
diagnosed April 2012
sigmoid resect May 2012
liver resect Aug 2012
Folfox Oct 2012
lungs Sep 2013
R and L laser lung resection Nov 2013/Feb 2014
FOLFIRI and Avastin Apr 2014 ongoing...

tammylayne
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Joined: Fri Jul 16, 2010 9:24 am

Re: On surgeon's advice, going to try the - gulp - daily ene

Postby tammylayne » Wed Mar 19, 2014 7:50 pm

I went through a short period where I was having "after issues"....I would do my thing in the am and had issues in the evening. My surgeon asked how much water I was using, and I said equivilent to 8 fleet bottles (dont know the measurement...i just fill them with hot tap water and add to my big red bag). He said that since I have no rectum and lost 2 feet of colon, he felt it was too much fluid....and suggested I do about half that and see what happens. I do between 4 and 5 bottles now....and no more issues. Not sure if that was the issue...butt in my case less was better. ABout 2 maybe 3 times in the past 6 months I have not emptied completely. On thoses occasions, I have just done another mini...maybe 3 bottles after dinner and I was back to normal.

I dont have cramping, but I use hot water...not cold or even body temp...I use hot. Not sure why I even started doing that. I used to have cramping while I was inputting the water and I used to just stpo the flow until it passed. I never get cramping now....and I tend to pass alot of gas at the end of each session...and I wonder if that is why I don't cramp after.

Something to try....if I go a little and things stop...I get up and walk around...get my clothes ready, put in my contacts etc...I don't venture far from the toilet because I find that helps get things moving...quickly. I also will sometimes sit on the toilet and stretch....stretches to the right and bending forward between my legs work best - puts pressure on my insides to move things along. I also do tummy massages....my massage therapists taught me that. She said that many people have to go and have a BM during massage because the movement stimulates the colon. When I am sitting on the toilet stalled....a couple minutes of massage (massage up on the right....across the top right to left, then downward strokes on the left side repeat) gets things going, and I think it moves the trapped air along as well.

I also squirt a decent amount of air out of my tubing before I begin to get the air out of the line....maybe that could be contributing to the gas issues?

Someone told me once that those pills for gas work by taking all of the little gas bubbles and pushing them together into one big bubble that can be expelled from the body ( not sure if tht is how it works...but this person said her doc told her that) so....what about taking a couple of those pills before you start and see if they work as the gas is forming?? Maybe it wont work...but it can't hurt to try right? If we weren't willing to try the unknown...none of us would be doing the daily enema :wink:

Good luck to all...
51 F
'06 Stage 1 CC,
'10 Stage 3 Rectal

"You never know how strong you are until you have to become your own hero."

tammylayne
Posts: 2157
Joined: Fri Jul 16, 2010 9:24 am

Re: On surgeon's advice, going to try the - gulp - daily ene

Postby tammylayne » Wed Mar 19, 2014 7:55 pm

Coffee enemas!!! What a great way to speed up my morning routine...do "my thing" AND get my morning coffee "in" to me LOL

Sorry,,,couldn't resist....no I haven't. I have often wondered about them though. My husband works for a coffee company. Can only imagine the looks on his coworkers faces when he buys all the expired coffee to bring home to his wife for her enemas :oops:

What would the benefits be? Does it replenish something that we are missing?? Does anyone use anything besides tap water? If so....what and why?
51 F
'06 Stage 1 CC,
'10 Stage 3 Rectal

"You never know how strong you are until you have to become your own hero."

tammylayne
Posts: 2157
Joined: Fri Jul 16, 2010 9:24 am

Re: On surgeon's advice, going to try the - gulp - daily ene

Postby tammylayne » Wed Mar 19, 2014 8:08 pm

Just noticed this thread has over 4500 views. That tells me there is a lot of interest and curiosity about it. I hope anyone that is trying to decide if they should try it or not feels comfortable asking myself or others for support, assistance or ideas. For those of us having success, it is a life changer....a quality of life changer.

Now,,on the other hand,,,if you googled enema for "other" reasons....and it brought you here... :shock: I remember my education from the beginning of this post that not everyone does enemas for medicinal reasons...
51 F
'06 Stage 1 CC,
'10 Stage 3 Rectal

"You never know how strong you are until you have to become your own hero."


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