Endometriosis UK
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Bladder problems after laproscopy

Hi everyone. I had my laproscopy early Tuesday morning. I was told id be in and out. I had 2 large cysts removed and a small amount of old edometriosis was found which i think shows taking the pill back to back has worked. When I woke up I had a drain fitted through my tummy and a catheter inserted. I was taken to a ward and told I had to stay the night. I bled too much during the op and was advised I may need a transfusion. The next day my blood count was fine so no transfusion was needed. The drain and catheter were both removed. The problem I had was that I couldn't empty my bladder on my own. Throughout the day id go to the toilet and only a small amount would pass, they then would do a bladder scan and found my bladder was still holding over half the urine. Ive been sent home to wear a catheter for 2 days to gice my bladder time to 'wake up' . I just want to know if anyone else had the same problem or know of it? Im really worried that its done permanent damage to my bladder. Also did anyone have problems with bowel movement (sorry not a nice topic i know) just im abit worried about the pain in my tummy and i think its preventing me from going. Thanks for any info.

2 Replies

I had the same too after my 3rd op. I couldn't go for a wee after they took the catheter out. I somehow managed to go for a small wee in the hospital and they let me go home. But for a whole week after my bladder didn't work properly, I had to really concentrate on weeing. After a week I started weeing properly. It is very worrying I know. When you go next just concentrate on keeping the urethra open and on nothing else, eventually I am sure it will happen. You must keep your fluids up too which is worrying too but it just may help flush things through. I would stick to mainly water. X


Oh dear - very common i'm afraid and for the most part the bladder spasms that cause this do recover in a few days or weeks, but not always. Mine took 17 months for the electrical impulses in the bladder to get back in synch and allow me to pee normally again. it recovered out of the blue long after i had given up all hope of ever being right again.

there are meds to try and see what works best for you, they relax the bladder muscles and take the edge off the bladder spasms (which are not something you can feel - they are just the electric impulses that cause your bladder muscles to tell you when you need to go pee and then when yo can pee and when you should stop peeing.

If you get them in a mixed up state that's when bladder retention happens.

Either you cannot pee a drop - or you can pee a teaspoons worth and you bladder clamps shut again at the wrong tie leaving you with a pretty full and distended bladder -then 5 minutes late back to the loo for another dribble.

or it works the other way - you get no warning that you need the loo and accidents happen because no amount of holding it in actually works, the electric signals are all rewired wrongly or rather are firing in the wrong order for the process to work properly.

I think i read that on average it takes about a week to settle for the vast majority - but there are always exception.

And for some unfortunates it never rights itself and they do have a life time getting help with loo trips.

I tried firstly buscopan - it didn't help enough , so i was then on Oxybutynin hydrochloride which worked a lot better for me. There are others besides those -so it's a bit of trial and error to find one that suits you best - if you are not sorted out in a week or two.

It happens to men a lot more than women who have had surgery for some reason, but there have been many many cases on this forum, and i think so far everyone has recovered in the end, some take longer than others do.

Please don't worry - you are not doing anything wrong at all, it is nothing you can correct yourself, you just have to wait till your body decides the time is right and the electric impulses get back firing the the right sequence again.

Bladders are actually quite complicated organs, and we don't realise this till it is suddenly not working normally. We really do take it for granted that when your bladder is full it will tell you and it will empty when you sit on the loo.

We have gotten so used to it working as required that it gets very frustrating when it doesn't and extremely uncomfy to have a constantly bursting for a pee bladder.

Bit like being stranded on the motorway in miles and miles of queueing cars going nowhere, while you are bursting your bladder for the nearest loo, only this goes on for hours and any loo trip is not enough to relieve you of the discomfort.

i was told that it can be caused by trauma to the bladder in surgery if they are scraping endo or adhesions off it, or even moving it out of the way a bit, and also the catheter being installed can cause it too.

but it sure is much nicer to have a catheter in to take away the pressure pain from build up of wee.

Mine came out very easily but it didn't solve the problem - i ploughed on for a week afterwards before heading to my GP and getting buscopan then back the next week after that to get oxybutynin. which while not perfect, did afford me the luxury of being able to empty my bladder even if i didn't exactly have a great deal of control about peeing and lots of accidents were had in the 17 months. at home, at work and elsewhere.

Happy to report that once the electric signals did synchronise it has worked very well ever since that morning when i woke up and felt different. i can't exactly define how i felt different, but i did and decided not to have the morning dose and yet was still able to control my loo trips and i was sceptical that it would last, but it did, and after 2 successful weeks after such a long time of loo trouble, i finally told my family that my loo horrors were resolved. 16 months on from that day and I have not had a single loo mishap, nor have i had any problems holding on when i need to hold on or emptying fully either.

The pain in the tummy will not be what is causing urinary retention. it is much more likely surgical wounds and bruising which are still healing and not yet settled down - that can take several weeks to calm down. It shouldn't have any bearing on the bladder issues.

if you are on pain killers they can cause constipation in the gut side of things so drinking water is essential - even if your bladder issues make you less inclined to have a drink which is understandable.

My recommendation if you do need to visit the GP for meds to help you pee after the catheter comes out is the Oxybutynin also called Ditropan. You musn't use it if you have a total blockage - but if you are still able to pee a dribble at a time then it helps a great deal.

The drugs if you do need them will dehydrate you- no sweating is a bonus, but it dries out the mouth, gums and nose too, especially at night time, so keep sipping water and if you wake in the night with a dry mouth take on board more water and suck a sweet to get your salivary glands working again.

Because of the length of time i was on them- my gums did recede right back below my teeth - which was not nice to see in the mirror, but happy to report that since not needing them anymore, my gums have plumped back up again.

It shouldn't matter unless you are on then drugs longer term - in which case extra attention to dental hygiene is really a good idea because your saliva production is much lower.

enjoy your cathetered time while it lasts, and i'll keep my fingers crossed that within a fortnight at most you are back in full flow.


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