Diverticulitis and Exercise

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Julie

Kent, WA

#1 May 5, 2011
The day before my first bout of Diverticulitis on Jan 23, 2011 I ran 3 miles. I know that's not very far, but I pushed myself that evening. The next day I started to get pain but I didn't know what it was.
To make a very long story short, I am just now starting to feel better after 3 ct scans, a colonoscopy, meds for 2 months and diet change (Look up "Great taste No pain" diet. It WORKS!).
The only problem I have is that every time I try to start running again I get that pain that all of you know.
I tried running again last night, and went only 1.5 miles. I have that familiar pain this morning and can hardly sit here at work at my computer.
Anyone else have this going on?? Will I be able to run again?????
Marci

Houston, TX

#2 May 5, 2011
Wow! My last bout was also around the end of January and...after getting over it and getting cdiff and pneumonia, I'm just now feeling about 80% back to norm...I also (normally) exercise a lot-I haven't been able to get back to my cardio (I'm weak) but I have started weight training again. I laid around for about 6 weeks- I got too weak-I felt like I should have been able to get up more to stay strong but I just couldn't-too much pain. I had 2 ct scans and I'm waiting to get the colonoscopy because my latest doc (can't find one I like!?) says I need to wait so we don't wash out all of that good bacteria-man, I don't know about running. Maybe you should do something w/lower impact for a while. When I get really tired, the same spots in my colon start aching-my lung starts aching too from the pneumonia...man, I feel for you....It SUCKS to not be able to do what you want and what you're used to doing. Maybe it takes longer to heal because you can't keep it clean!? I want to look up your diet. I've been avoiding ALL seeds and nuts because I REALLY do NOT want the surgery. So far, so good. It's all I know to do...besides keeping the other fiber going through....good luck and be proud you can run 3 miles-it's far enough to keep you healthy!!!
Elizabeth

Clayton, Australia

#3 May 6, 2011
I am astounded at your tenacity in running at all! Congratuations!
My sister did a bike ride many years ago, and was doubled up in pain, so much that the doctors took her appendix out!
One wonders if it was just the unusual (for her) exercise, or was it really necessary. She has had IBS since she was a small child, although it was not diagonised then. Now, she keeps the pains at bay by not eating some foods, such as wheat products and milk products. She does not keep to this diet strictly, but it seems to help.
Gillian

UK

#4 May 6, 2011
Before my op, I found that any exertion at all brought the pains on. I didn't have an active infection, but it always hurt. Helping my daughter move house resulted in 2 days in bed unable to move with severe pain in middle/low abdomen - nobody seemed to know why this happened. Even walking for more than an hour did the same. The last 6 months before surgery, I became a semi-invalid -which was very frustrating - as I had been very active all my life until then. Diet didn't seem to make any difference whatsoever.
Just so glad I had the surgery -can do anything I want now.
Terry

Rome, NY

#5 May 6, 2011
I had my surgery 8 1/2 months ago. It was the best thing I did. I had 6 infections in a year and a half. Changing my diet did not help me . My surgery was done laproscopic. I have had no problems. NO Pain! I eat healthy and I do not worry about getting so sick again.
Julie

Kent, WA

#6 May 6, 2011
Thanks everyone, I am really, really trying to avoid surgery since I have no health insurance, but I also really can't keep having this pain every time I want to do something other than laying around. Maybe it will have to come to that.
I also can't wear anything restricting around my stomach. It's been dresses for me at work. I have a "sit-dowm" job which is the worst! I can't wear my pants or jeans. Do any of you feel like this as well??
Again, thank you!! I don't feel like I'm the only one, and doctors really don't seem to get it either. At least the ones I've gone to.
Karen

Duluth, MN

#7 May 6, 2011
I have the same issues as your sister...The best thing I found to help me is Metamucil..I use the orange powder and drink it twice a day everyday...no exceptions! I have never felt better!
Elizabeth wrote:
I am astounded at your tenacity in running at all! Congratuations!
My sister did a bike ride many years ago, and was doubled up in pain, so much that the doctors took her appendix out!
One wonders if it was just the unusual (for her) exercise, or was it really necessary. She has had IBS since she was a small child, although it was not diagonised then. Now, she keeps the pains at bay by not eating some foods, such as wheat products and milk products. She does not keep to this diet strictly, but it seems to help.
Mia

Madison, WI

#8 Aug 12, 2011
Julie wrote:
Thanks everyone, I am really, really trying to avoid surgery since I have no health insurance, but I also really can't keep having this pain every time I want to do something other than laying around. Maybe it will have to come to that.
I also can't wear anything restricting around my stomach. It's been dresses for me at work. I have a "sit-dowm" job which is the worst! I can't wear my pants or jeans. Do any of you feel like this as well??
Again, thank you!! I don't feel like I'm the only one, and doctors really don't seem to get it either. At least the ones I've gone to.
I've noticed the same thing with restrictive clothing. I was on the mend after having an attack about a month ago, and since it's been a hot summer I've been wearing loose flowing dresses. Last week I donned jeans for 3-4 days straight to do some heavy/dirty jobs at work...and today I'm experiencing a major relapse.
Julie

Kirkland, WA

#9 Aug 13, 2011
I had resection surgery 3 weeks ago. The infections/inflammation was horrible. I have tons more energy now than I did before, even at just 3 weeks post-op. I do have pain, but it's from the surgery.. NO pain from the diverticulitis like before!! I've been able to eat pretty much anything. I'm a little impatient. I've been waiting to get back to normal since January, and now that I can see the light at the end of the tunnel I want to run!! I can't do that yet, but I am SO looking forward to feeling better!!!!
Can anyone tell me how long it took you to feel totally better after surgery? I still can't wear anything constricting. Mia, I'm so sorry you're experiencing this. I wonder what causes that?? I wonder if that part will ever go away... I hope so or I'll have to get a whole new wardrobe. I'm looking to go back to work on the 22nd. Thanks everyone!!
Kim

Anchorage, AK

#10 Oct 7, 2011
I had the surgery 2 years ago and have had a pain free 2 years. Then, this week, Diverticulitis hit me again. I am so frustrated! I had such a hard time before.. 6 bouts in 6 months, cdif... and I am allergic to most meds!! Anyone have any advice. I am considering more surgery because I know that works
!!
Julie

Bellevue, WA

#11 Oct 7, 2011
Kim, I'm so sorry. How horrible. I don't know what to tell you. I have absolutely no advice.
My surgery has been a little over 2 months now. I've got sharp pain on my right side. I don't have a fever and I'm not feeling like it's an infection, but I'm wondering about adhesions. It's very sharp when I turn certain ways or when I'm more active, and my stomach is still bloated!! What's with that?!!?
This is a tough one to beat, but I'm trying to stay positive. I sure hope you'll get some advice from someone. Good luck to all of us!
Gillian

UK

#12 Oct 9, 2011
Kim, I'm so sorry for you -it is my nightmare: that my DD will come back, as I know that it would mean a permanent stoma. You need to have a long talk with your surgeon and weigh up the pros and cons of further surgery.

Julie, I would mention the pain to your doctor at your next check up. However,you may find that you get quite a few aches and pains up to a year after the surgery, as your nerves/muscles are healing.

Unfortunately, the bloated stomach is something most of us seem to suffer from afterwards - it will go down a bit, but it never seems to go back to pre-op days.
Leonie Brisbane

Balwyn, Australia

#13 Oct 30, 2011
I am so pleased to find this site. I now feel 'normal' with my Diverticulitis. I have just spent a week in hospital on antibiotic drips & saline. I have been off work for almost a mth. I am worried about the bloated stomach & the pain I get when only doing a little exercise (like walking). Mine is in the lower right quadrant. I am still on antibiotics (oral) & I'm stressing about money as I don't have any insurance. I try to keep the stress at a minimum but I think it is always in the back of my mind. Has anyone not been able to go back to work? I have a sit down job in a busy call center.
Gillian

UK

#14 Oct 31, 2011
Leonie, everybody is different, Some recover quite quickly and go back to work, others take ages.

I had to give my job up after my last bout of diver until after the surgery because the pains never went away and I could not lead a normal life.

Hopefully, you should feel better once you are off the antibiotics -have a look on the Mayo Clinic website for advice about diet, as following their advice about liquid and low fibre diets to start with after an attack, really does work and help to limit the pain and get you feeling back to normal.

Hope you feel better soon.
Jackie

Alpharetta, GA

#16 May 4, 2012
So glad to have found this site. While we are all unique in some ways, in other ways we are all experiencing the same horror of this disease. I was first diagnosed in 2000. From then on I would go for 2-3 years attack free. This Feb. I had a bad attack and haven't been well since. I am scheduled for surgery on May 29th and scared to death! But I am going forward with it since I cannot continue a life like this. I'm ok on liquids but any solidness puts me back in pain. I'm currently on another antibiotic regimen. I love to exercise and just can't. When I start to feel better I want to exercise and then end up in pain the next day. I hate this sedentary lifestyle. Plus I want to eat a steak and a salad. I'm starving! I am so over this!
Deb

Lewis Center, OH

#17 May 4, 2012
I hope you have a very succesful and quick recovery, Jackie! It seems like just yesterday that I was feeling the way you are now. I'm so glad that I chose to have the colon resection surgery in early November. I'm now feeling normal and better than I have in many years.
Sharon

Canada

#18 May 9, 2012
This is an interesting thread. I was diagnosed with Diverticulitis three weeks ago. Did the antibiotics things as well as the Mayo Clinic recovery diet. All seemed to be going well until last Sunday evening, when I started experiencing the familiar pains in my abdomen. I thought it must have been something I ate for dinner....but, after reading these comments I realize it might have been the walk/hike my husband and I took our dogs on late in the afternoon. I stuck it out and waited to see what would happen. Everything seemed to be settled down by morning. I have a question....if the pain is food related...how long does it take to surface? ie. If you start feeling pain in the evening is it from a meal that same day and if so which one or is it from the previous day's meals. Any insite is greatly appreciated. As an afterthought I also would like to say how helpful this site has been - information wise and also you don't feel quite so alone in what you are dealing with.
Georgia

United States

#19 May 9, 2012
Hi Sharon,
Well, actually, Gillian, Pam and myself were discussing this very topic quite awhile ago and first off, everyone is different. We sort of came up with it could take up to a week before you felt an infection, as it would take time to sit, get irritated, then become infected. It certainly wasn't scientific, but when you stop and figure out how long each step takes on it's way to infection, I think it could take that long on some people.
I hope you stay healthy and good luck figuring out the cause of your discomfort. Some people keep a food diary to figure out what it was they ate.
Julie

Seattle, WA

#20 May 9, 2012
Here I am, about a year from my original post. I had resection surgery in July 2011. The horrible pains are gone, but I still have pain every day. EVERY day. I still can't exercise, and what I mean by "exercise" is slow walking over 20min - half hour, and not fast (I was a runner). Otherwise I get a total flare up. My stomach is bloated and I can't wear my regular pants. Still hurts to sit and I have a desk job. I can't sleep on my stomach, or the side that hurts. When I get a flare it usually lasts for over a month. I'm not back to normal at all. My Dr is saying to go back to the surgeon. I'm not doing that. I have an appt with a Naturopath in June. When I first got this I had no idea. It's been 16 months of constant pain. I too like knowing that I'm not alone, but I'm sorry that all of you are feeling this as well. I don't think the doctors know what causes this or how to make it better.
Georgia

United States

#21 May 9, 2012
Hi Julie,
I am so sorry all this has happened to you.I have heard lots of good reports on resection surgery, but it certainly has not been successful for you. I can't imagine a flare lasting for a month. Is the only thing your Dr. said is go back to the surgeon? It sure didn't work for you the first time. I sure see why you don't want to go back. I wish you could get a second opinion. Maybe if the Naturopath can't help you will find a different Dr. I certainly hope you find some answers from someone. Dr.'s don't know many of the answers. People claim so many things trigger an attack. It could be a combination. I believe my flares were caused by stress, cause when the stress went away so did the flares, with no change in diet.
Best of luck to you.

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