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Endometriosis UK
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Bloated belly after surgery?

How long did it take for you to get your stomach back to how it usually is?

I don’t even feel like I have a lot of gas as I am not passing any (tmi) but look like I am full of it. Also got shoulder pain & I can only lie on my back.

x

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Mine took a few months, everyones different, I wore baggy clothes, and elasticated trousers for the first four months after my lap. It's only now - 5 months that my shape is returning.

I've found though my bloatedness is also a sentitivity to wheat, and milk, so reducing those has helped. I still get bloated during my period.

I do core strength exercises to improve the muscles so that it holds everything in better; my physio says that sometimes after trauma such as surgery we forget to know how to use these muscles so it makes everything just "fall forward", so the strengthening has helped me know what those muscles are and tighten them so I look less bloated too as stuff is held in place. don't know if that makes sense. xx

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Hi farahziya thanks for your reply, that’s a long time for your stomach to go down. I look very bloated and it’s so uncomfortable x

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yeah I think it depends on how your body responds to the amount of stuff they've done in there, as there will be lots of swelling, not just the gas they put in there, plus our body protects itself by surrounding sensitive areas in fluid while they heal, so it can all make it feel a lot worse.

it will go down over time, deffo look into core exercises as that will strengthen the abs, it doesn't need to be a lot, plus if your body has forgotten how to use them (result of op) it'll always feel bloated as they're never activated which can last forever unless your body has learnt what they are again. It's helped me massively, and I wish I'd know about that sooner! It works the same way as post natal stomach exercises.

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Thanks I will give it a google :) thank goodness for this site as otherwise I wouldn’t know anything haha x

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I had my lap on the 12th of December and I'd say it probably took 2 and half to 3 weeks for my stomach to go back down, where as the worst of the gas pain passed after about 4 days. I imagine the time it takes for the stomach bloating to go down can be quite variable from one person to the next however?

Wishing you a speeding recovery! x

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Thank-you x

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I had my op on the 30th november found out on the 4th jan i have endometriosis growing in my womb also adenomiosis and my bowel is low n blocked i have to go thursday for a false menopause injection and also to see a bowel surgeon my stomach has been huge before my op but even bigger after my op so i carnt really say but when i had it done the first time within a week maybe 2 my stomach was flat but that was a long time ago

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Sorry to hear you have been diagnosed with all of this, it’s tough isn’t it. Hope you get on fine on Thursday x

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Kirendo I’m curious how did you know you had endo again so soon? I think you should look into the side effects of those false menopause injections. The side effects are pretty harsh and there’s a lot of controversy as to whether it even helps shrink endometriosis lesions. As for the bowels, if they suggest you might need a bowel resection, I suggest getting another opinion because with advanced skilled excision specialists, bowel resections are rarely needed. I stumbled upon a Facebook group of 50k followers and it’s been insanely informative. I’m trying to spread the word about this page to help as many women as possible. Hopefully if women can go to the right doctors then multiplied surgeries can be avoided. I really hope this helps you make a decision for your next sugery or which steps you take next. The group is called Nancy’s Nook Endometriosis Group. If you do look into it. Let me know what you think!!

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Kirendo, Marti is right. Check it out on FB. Nan y book educational forum

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I'm still bloated after 8 wks. Think it's swelling. Its improving but can't wear many of my clothes still. I had to sleep on my back for about 5 weeks after surgery. Hope your recovery is going well apart from that :)

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I didn’t get shoulder pain but I was very bloated and uncomfortable and had a very solid mass on examination so I went to my GP who thought that there might be inflamation and prescribed Ibroprufen the as first option. Was a bit skeptical but the bloating and hardness decreased after about a week.

Hope it helps?

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Hi, it’s been exactly 4 weeks since my operation and I’m still bloating just as I was before surgery. It took a little less than a week for the gas from surgery to exit my body. After that I felt very depressed to see the same bloat where I wake up with a flat tummy and I expand 3-6 inches every single day for the past 1.5 years. It expands when I consume ANYTHING, even water or juice and doesn’t return to normal until the next morning. My surgeon at first said I have Endo Belly but now he’s saying that it must be something else because surgery would’ve taken endo bloating away. I’ve been tested for most other GI possibilities and tried tons of elimination diets with no results so I’m confused and frustrated. Does this sound familiar to any of you? Is your bloating associated with consumption?

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Sounds very familiar to me except I was diagnosed with a ruptured cyst and bad scar tissue from a pelvic infection. They were removed and the fluid drained out, even though I feel that it’s all still in me. I’m planning to get tested for any GI issues soon. Wish the internet gave more information. I’m thankful for this group!

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Hi thanks for your reply, I am bloated due to the gas they put on me when in surgery. I wake up bloated now. Usually I have a flattish stomach but when on period it’s more round :)

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Try drinking a lot of mint tea and take peppermint tablets. I’ve just had excision surgery after 7 months of zoladex (which is a treatment/drug I would exercise extreme caution towards btw). Normally it takes about 4 weeks for the bloating to go away altogether but diet has a huge effect on this too post surgery.

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It took me months to lose it.

I think you should also be aware that a lot of women with endometriosis get bloating (where they look pregnant) even if they haven't had surgery. It's a common side effect of the illness. Not saying all women get it but I've come across A LOT that experience it via this group on Instagram via famous bloggers who have the Illness another friend of mine that it experiences it too and myself. It comes randomly for me personally. Everyone is different.

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The shoulder pain is the gas pain, i had it under ribs and right shoulder. Agony! 5 days after op i was so so sore. I used peppermint tea and milk of magnesia sorted the gas pain and got my bowels moving. Its horrible i totally sympathise xx

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It's probably caused by inflammation as your body heals. It could take a few months to go back to normal. I haven't been able to wear jeans for a year but it's bloat / inflammation rather than weight gain. Wearing clothes that don't make it worse is half the battle. x

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Agree with JenBrown-was warned that the gas will disperse but would cause me pain, shoulder was the worst. Mine eased after 4 days I was lucky -hope your pain eases very soon. x

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I’m 13 days post op and my belly is the same size now as it was before surgery. It’s taken an emotional toll on me as I feel as something else is wrong. I believe about 90% of the gas has subsided as I don’t pass it as much but I have noticed more back and lower adimonal aches. I’m scheduled to go back to see a different Doc next week just to make sure nothing else is going on. I tend to hear a lot of noises in my stomach throughout the day that I heard before surgery and with the noises and the bloating I’m very uneasy. Wishing you a speedy recovery!

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Hope you are starting to feel a bit better after your surgery.

X

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Don’t worry; there is a lot of swelling after surgery so it’s not necessarily gas. I’ve had excision surgery twice now. First time was incomplete and it took 4 weeks or more for the swelling to go down. I’m week 5 post op and still have a little swelling. My physio says it’s normal and once I start exercising again it will help.

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How long did you wait before you started exercising? I’m 2 weeks post op and I plan to at least begin walking the treadmill slowly. Before the surgery I was in the gym 5 days and was very fit. Hoping the treadmill will help me feel better emotionally.

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I found that charcoal tablets really helped me with the gas pain and bloating post-op. You can get them from Holland and Barrett. To be honest, it did take a good while to return back to 'normal' after surgery, at least 2-3 months, so its a long-haul thing. Doc said I would be back to normal in 2 weeks...hahahahaha!

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Thank you! I’ll pick some up today and let you know how they work. I wish the doctor would have told me the “true” recovery time before surgery! Like you said, I was given the “2 week back to normal spill.” Thanks for the support!

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It takes a while for the bloated feeling to go. It took me almost 2 weeks and had this weird shoulder pain. I beleive its the side effect of the anasthesia and will gradually disappear in a week or so. Good Luck and feel better soon Hun...

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