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Doctor insights on: Adhesions

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Dr. Mark Aranson
305 Doctors shared insights

Adhesions (Overview)

Adhesions are scar tissue which can form after any abdominal surgery. The severity depends on whether infection/inflammation was present at the time of surgery. Adhesions are like bands or spider webs that form around the abdominal organs/intestines. Sometimes adhesions are light and cause no problems, sometimes tremendous problems, like crazy glue in the abdomen. Can cause pain or blockage.


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What sort of problem is an adhesion?

What sort of problem is an adhesion?

Scar tissue: An adhesion usually describes scar tissue surrounding the organs. Often caused by infection, trauma or surgery. If an adhesion pinches off the bowel it can cause obstruction and bowel death. Adhesions make surgery very difficult because they are tough and prevent structures from being moved. They generally look like thick cobwebs.

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Dr. Mark Aranson
305 Doctors shared insights

Adhesions (Overview)

Adhesions are scar tissue which can form after any abdominal surgery. The severity depends on whether infection/inflammation was present at the time of surgery. Adhesions are like bands or spider webs that form around the abdominal organs/intestines. Sometimes adhesions are light and cause no problems, sometimes tremendous problems, like crazy glue in the abdomen. Can cause pain or blockage.


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How long does it take adhesions to form?

How long does it take adhesions to form?

Almost immediately.: They start forming almost immediately. They are at their worst 2-4 weeks out from surgery then usually start disappearing after that. They may go completely away or they may stay forever. Every patient is different.

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What are all the symptoms of abdominal adhesions and how bad do the pains get?

What are all the symptoms of abdominal adhesions and how bad do the pains get?

Several: Abdominal colicky pain, abdominal distention, no stool or flatus, nausea, fever, vomitting. Initially, they need to confirm obstruction with an exam and an xray or ct scan. Then initially will be treated with complete bowel rest (nothing by mouth) and IV fluids, with or without a nasogastric tube. If it doesn't resolve in 24 hours surgery may be necessary. Good luck.

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Hi are signs of bulimia clear on a colonoscopy or indeed what scars or adhesions wud it cause?

Hi are signs of bulimia clear on a colonoscopy or indeed what scars or adhesions wud it cause?

GI risks of bulemia: Signs of bulemia: enlarged salivary glands, bleeding into whites of eye, red spots on neck & face from vomiting, scarring of first finger joint of dominant hand from induced vomiting, chronic diarrhea. Gi complications: teeth erosions, increased blood amylase, esophagitis, tears or rupture of esophagus, dilation of stomach & upper small bowel, pancreatitis, colon dilation & pigmenting (melanosis).

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Can a colonoscopy diagnose a partial large bowel obstruction caused by abdominal adhesions?

Can a colonoscopy diagnose a partial large bowel obstruction caused by abdominal adhesions?

Maybe: Adhesions occur from pror surgery. Was there past surgery? External adhesions would be rare to cause colon obstruction. If there was prior colon surgery, then surgical site anastomosis narrowing or scarring would be visible at colonoscopy.

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Just had surgery for numerous adhesions. Could this be cause of upper abdominal pn & nausea that I've had for mths. All other tests normal?

Hmmmm: Yes, but surgery for adhesion pain tend to be short live because, new adhesions will form from the new surgery then you may be back to the same old problem again. Hope this is not the case for you.

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I have a adhesion "skin bridge" on my penis and would like to know whether or not it can be removed?

I have a adhesion "skin bridge" on my penis and would like to know whether or not it can be removed?

Check with urologist: This is usually a simple procedure done by a urologist. Set up a consultation or call & speak with the physicians staff about the procedure.

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What causes adhesions on the intestine?

Peritoneal loss: Intestinal adhesions are due to the loss of the protective peritoneal membrane which envelops the small and large intestines. This is most commonly due to previous surgery but can be due to infection as well.

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What is the best way to treat penile adhesion?

What is the best way to treat penile adhesion?

Glanular adhesions: Adhesions of the foreskin to the glans (head) are usually the result of chronic irritation or inflammation. If the foreskin cannot be retracted, it may be advisable to have a circumcision.

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How can I treat right hydrosalpinx with peritubal adhesions?

How can I treat right hydrosalpinx with peritubal adhesions?

Gynecologist: This is hard to explain here ou should consult with a gynecologist. Depending on findings they can free up the adhesions and treat with antibiotics or drain hydrosalpinx.

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How are surgical adhesions treated?

How are surgical adhesions treated?

Excision: Adhesions may be separated or lysed as well as excised and removed. For abdominal cavity adhesions, frequently this can be done with laparoscopy or robotic assisted surgery.

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Please let me know if there is any best treatment for abdominal adhesions but without surgery?

Please let me know if there is any best treatment for abdominal adhesions but without surgery?

Surgery for: Abdominal adhesions is only necessary if the adhesion block the bowel or other tubular structure such as the kidney ureters. If no blockage is present, generally no need for surgery.

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What are the available treatments for abdominal adhesions?

What are the available treatments for abdominal adhesions?

Surgery: Adhesions are a very common byproduct of abdominal surgery, related to the nature of the operation, the disease treated, and patient-factors. Most adhesions do not cause any problems. Surgery is reserved for adhesions that cause small bowel obstruction that does not respond to conservative treatment. It is speculated as a common cause of chronic abdominal pain.

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How to cure adhesion in endometriosis?

How to cure adhesion in endometriosis?

Difficult: Significant adhesions are actually not as common as one might realize. Our experience is about 30%. There are several liquid agents used at surgery but none have real proven benefit. We use "ovarian suspension" as a mechanism for getting the ovary and tube out of the raw area of dissection. We also employ uterine suspension, an old technique, when we do stage 4 cases with significant colon dz.

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Is there anything I can do other than surgery to get rid of adhesions?

Is there anything I can do other than surgery to get rid of adhesions?

Unfortunately no: Adhesions can only be treated surgically and then frequently recur. Laparoscopic treatment yields the best results, but is not always possible and is fraught with possible complications.

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What pain tablets can I use for pain due to abdominal adhesions?

Seek cause of pain.: Adhesions are the inevitable consequence of prior abdominal surgery and/or inflammation within the abdominal cavity. These adhesions compartmentalize the abdomen and may (rarely)cause the intestine to twist on itself, causing an acute small bowel obstruction. They are (all-too)often implicated as a cause of chronic abdominal or pelvic pain; this is a "diagnosis of exclusion"-search for other causes.

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Stage iii-b crc removed surgically 2 weeks ago, 3 days ago surgery was performed to remove post op adhesion blocking the small intestines, suggested chemo is capeox. When should treatment begin?

Stage iii-b crc removed surgically 2 weeks ago, 3 days ago surgery was performed to remove post op adhesion blocking the small intestines, suggested chemo is capeox. When should treatment begin?

Adjuvant chemo: Adjuvant chemo for stage iii colorectal cancer would be combination of 5fu/oxaliplatin or capecitabine/oxaliplatin. Chemo can be started as soon as you are recovering well from your surgery. It can be started 4-6 weeks from surgery-providing that all surgical site is healed. Good luck. It is not a common thing to have a colon cancer at age of 30- thus a genetic counselling/testing is recommended.

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