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  1. #1
    Registered User GreeneLeaf's Avatar
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    Help with abdominal adhesions?

    Hi all, I had surgery approx. 2 years ago for ovarian cysts which caused me to develop abdominal adhesions. Most of the time they are not that bothersome, however when doing ab exercises - especially any involving the lower abs or obliques, it is extremely painful and feels as if something is going to rip apart in lower right hand side of my abdomen.

    I have been to the doctor for this, and the only way they offer to get rid of them is more surgery. I'd rather not go under the knife again if possible; so I was wondering if anyone here has ever dealt with adhesions in their abdomen, and if so did you find any alternatives to surgery, ie: ways to possibly stretch them out to reduce the pain and increase your range of motion? The most painful abdominal exercise is the stomach vacuum when I can really feel them pulling on things in there. If anyone has any ideas for this, please help! Thanks :-)
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    Registered User foresail's Avatar
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    Recommend asking your doctor for a referral to physical therapy. You may have to contact local PT clinics within your insurer’s network to find someone who has actual experience treating this and not just book knowledge.

    A few weeks ago, I met a woman with the same problem as you. Her PT used different techniques (massage, ultrasound, heat, etc) to soften her abdominal adhesions enough to increase ROM and completely stop the pain.
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  3. #3
    Registered User ty05's Avatar
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    I had a tumor removed from my right ovary in 2009, and the adhesions were a real b***h to deal with... Did your surgeon use seprafilm when closing the incision?

    I'm not sure of a way to actually make it all "go away", but I do notice that anytime I become bloated or consume a ton of fiber I feel a lot of pressure around the incision. My trainer eventually had me do abs and obliques on the bosu ball. For some odd reason I was able to tolerate core workouts this way versus on a flat bench or the floor without feeling like my insides were being ripped part. However, if I did not stretch enough after every workout (even cardio) my lower stomach would start cramping up.
    Last edited by ty05; 11-13-2011 at 06:15 PM.
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  4. #4
    Registered User GreeneLeaf's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by foresail View Post
    Recommend asking your doctor for a referral to physical therapy. You may have to contact local PT clinics within your insurer’s network to find someone who has actual experience treating this and not just book knowledge.

    A few weeks ago, I met a woman with the same problem as you. Her PT used different techniques (massage, ultrasound, heat, etc) to soften her abdominal adhesions enough to increase ROM and completely stop the pain.
    Thank you for the recommendation, I'll definitely ask my doctor about the option-I bet all I would need is an adequate referral to get a PT appt. My actual surgery was performed by a doctor outside of my network that was over 6 hours away, (he was good), but luckily my insurance still covers a decent percentage of the cost so I'll go for it. Thanks for the hopeful reply!!
    Last edited by GreeneLeaf; 11-13-2011 at 10:21 PM.
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  5. #5
    Registered User GreeneLeaf's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by ty05 View Post
    I had a tumor removed from my right ovary in 2009, and the adhesions were a real b***h to deal with... Did your surgeon use seprafilm when closing the incision?

    I'm not sure of a way to actually make it all "go away", but I do notice that anytime I become bloated or consume a ton of fiber I feel a lot of pressure around the incision. My trainer eventually had me do abs and obliques on the bosu ball. For some odd reason I was able to tolerate core workouts this way versus on a flat bench or the floor without feeling like my insides were being ripped part. However, if I did not stretch enough after every workout (even cardio) my lower stomach would start cramping up.
    Wow you had it too?!? Thank you for the reply! I know they wrapped the ovaries themselves in a material to help them heal with less scar tissue; but I believe that was it. Seprafilm sounds great, I wonder if it would have helped.

    I'll try to do my ab exercises on the bosu ball and see what happens! I'm excited at the prospect of less painful ab workouts :-)

    And I'll be the first to admit I do NOT stretch nearly enough-that makes sense and would probably help; maybe stretching actually loosens the adhesions a little bit?

    It gives me hope to hear from someone that has dealt with the same thing successfully and has found things that work. Thanks for the suggestions ty05, I will definitely use them!!
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  6. #6
    Registered User ty05's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by GreeneLeaf View Post
    Wow you had it too?!? Thank you for the reply! I know they wrapped the ovaries themselves in a material to help them heal with less scar tissue; but I believe that was it. Seprafilm sounds great, I wonder if it would have helped.

    I'll try to do my ab exercises on the bosu ball and see what happens! I'm excited at the prospect of less painful ab workouts :-)

    And I'll be the first to admit I do NOT stretch nearly enough-that makes sense and would probably help; maybe stretching actually loosens the adhesions a little bit?

    It gives me hope to hear from someone that has dealt with the same thing successfully and has found things that work. Thanks for the suggestions ty05, I will definitely use them!!
    Yeah, my sister had it when she was 19, and mine was discovered when I was 21. Fibroids/cysts/tumors of the reproductive system run on both sides of my family.

    Feel free to message me anytime if you have questions about adhesions/recovery, as friends of mine have given me tons of advice post-op that seemed to help.
    "When you get cancer, it's like really time to look at what your life was and is, and I decided that everything I've done so far is not as important as what I'm going to do now." - Herbie Mann
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  7. #7
    Registered User GreeneLeaf's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by ty05 View Post
    Yeah, my sister had it when she was 19, and mine was discovered when I was 21. Fibroids/cysts/tumors of the reproductive system run on both sides of my family.

    Feel free to message me anytime if you have questions about adhesions/recovery, as friends of mine have given me tons of advice post-op that seemed to help.
    Ah yes my mom had cysts/tumors removed at the around the same age that I did; definitely genetic... hopefully my sister doesn't get them :-( It's funny because in general I was in so much relief after healing from the surgery---but the adhesions have caused a brand new unique set of problems I was not expecting! Thanks for your help, it's nice to know I'm not alone with this stuff :-)
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