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Please help! 6days after surgery and pain and no poop!
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Maryland
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21 September 2016
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28 September 2016 - 6:36 pm
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My poor sweet Charlie has been having a hard time post op with pain. He's had his rear leg fully amputated 6 days ago and has been back twice for pain issues possibly related to incision drainage and a large hot spot on pelvic stump. How long can they go without pooping? He is still wreathing in pain and curling his surgery site/hip etc forward and crying. I just can't take much more watching him suffer. Please help! Could this be constipation pain? 

Livermore, CA




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28 September 2016 - 8:25 pm
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Welcome, your future posts will not have to wait for approval.

What meds does Charlie have?  He should not be in so much pain as you describe, constipation will make a dog uncomfortable but shouldn't be so painful.  What did the vet say about the pain and drainage? It sounds like he needs more or a different pain med.

My pug Maggie didn't poop until day 6 or 7.  Some plain pumpkin or olive oil should help get things moving.

What does the drainage look like? What does the 'hot spot' look like?  I would be concerned about an infection- is he on an antibiotic?

I don't mean to scare you or be an alarmist- but if he is writhing in pain 6 days after surgery something is wrong, either a problem with the incision site like an infection or not enough pain meds.

Karen and the Spirit Pug Girls

Tri-pug Maggie survived a 4.5 year mast cell cancer battle only to be lost to oral melanoma.

1999 to 2010

 

              Maggie's Story                  Amputation and Chemo

Virginia




Member Since:
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28 September 2016 - 9:12 pm
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Okay, deep breaths!! It is so hard watching our pups in pain!' We feel helpless during this recovery time! On top of everything else, you are exhausted and stressed beyond words! We understand like no others can!!

As far as not pooping, try Karen's suggestion a d try and couple of teaspoons of natural pumpkin puree NOT added spices, sugars, etc). That should help. It's not unusual for dogs not to poop for several days or more. He could be "uncomfortable" from that, but not necessarily writhing in pain from it. Charlie should go in the next day or two...but do vet that pumpkin.

To echo Karen, what pain meds is Charlie on? Has the vet mentioned "nerve pain" or phantom limb pain? Has he given Charlie Gabapentin? You can try gentle massage around the incision area. Did the vet mention ice
packs?

What specifically has the vet done to manage the pain? What doses? How frequently?

Not sure what you mean by "hot spot" on pelvic "stump" Could you post a picture??

I know wevew asked you a lot of questions, but there's a lot of firsthand knowledge here, especially abput pain management .

Eating, drinking, peeing?

STAY CONNECTED! Hang onto us, okay? This recovery period is rough!! It does not last forever, it just seems like it!! Post when you can, okay??

Don't forget to take those deep breaths, okzy? B R E A T H E.....B R E A T H E......B R E A T H E...........

Sending you lots of hugs!

Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle and Frankie too!

Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

On The Road


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28 September 2016 - 10:34 pm
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Oh poor Charlie! I know, that's gotta be rough on both of you. Yes his pain could be a combo of the not pooping and, well, pain. What exactly did the vet prescribe to alleviate it? And yes, what do mean a hot spot on the incision site? Is it infected? Did the vet do anything about that?

Hang in there, we'll walk you through and help in any ways we can OK. Sorry for all the questions, but it's good to have the info so we can offer more specific tips. 

Tripawds Founders Jim and Rene
tripawds.com | tripawds.org | bemoredog.net | triday.pet

Michigan
Member Since:
2 April 2013
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28 September 2016 - 10:35 pm
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As well as the pumpkin (make sure it's just the plain pumpkin, not the kind with all of the spices in it) a couple of spoonsful a day usually works.  Would Charlie let you rub his belly some?  Some abdominal massaging might help to move things along a little bit.  Pain medications often can be constipating, plus not walking around as much (walking helps the natural movement of the bowels), if he's not eating as much then there's not as much there to go, and if he's not drinking enough water.  So, a huge combination of things.

And yes, what is he getting for pain?  Murphy came home on Tramadol, Rimadyl & Gabapentin.  You can also apply an ice pack wrapped in a towel to the incision a couple times a day for about 10 or 15 minutes. 

Donna

Donna, Glenn & Murphy 

Murphy had his right front leg amputated due to histiocytic sarcoma at 7 years old. He survived 4 years, 2 months & 1 week, only to be taken by hemangiosarcoma at 11 1/2 years 6/12/17  
Read about Murphy's Life on Three Legs

Donna.png

Melbourne, AUS
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31 August 2016
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28 September 2016 - 11:43 pm
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Sorry to hear Charlie isn't doing well sad. Meg took five days to poop (after one tiny poop a few hours after surgery). Pumpkin, sweet potato & lamb baby food did the trick and got things moving. 

Meg had a little discomfort due to the constipation, but nothing like what you're describing for Charlie! If he has had pain issues from day 1, it doesn't sound like he is on the right drugs, some dogs might have muscle pains and strains around day 6, but not as much surgery pain. 

Maybe he even needs to spend a day at the vets on a pain drip, like he might have been on after the surgery, just to get him back ahead of the pain before trying a different drug plan?

Poor Charlie, I hope he improves, and hugs to you. Its horrible to feel so helpless when your doggo is in pain!

Maryland
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21 September 2016
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30 September 2016 - 2:13 pm
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Sorry for the delay in response, thank you all so much for your responses! I knew he shouldn't be in so much pain and that is why I took him back in initially 4 days post op but they acted like it was the atopic dermatitis skin breakage at the distal end of the incision where he has had drainage from sitting on it. But he just kept curling his hind area up and in and crying even 48 hrs after doubling his pain meds. (He originally came home on Codeine 45mg, antibiotics and Duramaxx) And I have been doing the pure pumpkin since Day 3 post op.

After I posted here we just had the worst night yet, he couldn't sleep a blink and was contorting and moaning again by the end of 5 hours on 90 mg of codeine. So I called and insisted he be hospitalized and that his pain wasn't being managed and I wasn't able to take care of him or get him comfortable, he was suffering way too much I was even questioning if he should be alive. A very dark moment. 

We took him in and they finally saw for themselves what we meant and it is indeed muscle spasm and likely nerve pain. He stayed 24 hours and we just got home and he is sleeping. They gave him Robaxin - a muscle relaxant, gabapentin 300 mg, and he going back to the 45mg of Codeine to prevent becoming dysmorphic. (And antibiotics) I have Ace I can add if needed for sedation at night if he is unable to sleep. Warm compressing the distal pelvic area 3x a day to bring blood to the area and prevent tissue death.  (Not sure how to post a pic?)?

While we were there we got the version 2 results of the biopsy and it is indeed Osteosarcoma as we thought. 😔

This has been the worst thing I have ever experienced watching him suffer so, I'm praying this is the beginning of at least him being more comfortable in his recovery.  

I just ordered a surgical suit for him to wear so he doesn't have to wear the plastic E collar, all the alternatives don't work for him since he's so big he can get around them. He can get around the vet's too actually. 

And he still hasn't pooped!

I appreciate you all so much.  Much thanks, 

Mary Beth

Charlie's Mom

Maryland
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21 September 2016
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30 September 2016 - 6:44 pm
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How long is too long to not poop? He is 7 days post op, vet doesn't seem concerned?

On The Road


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24 September 2009
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30 September 2016 - 7:06 pm
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OK, I'll say that that's "a little" longer than average. If you've tried natural remedies like pumpkin pulp, steamed squash, olive oil and similar remedies, ask your vet for a prescription that can move things along. They do exist.

Tripawds Founders Jim and Rene
tripawds.com | tripawds.org | bemoredog.net | triday.pet

Member Since:
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30 September 2016 - 8:46 pm
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I'm so sorry to hear Charlie has had such a hard time. I don't know much about the constipation, my Kylie pooped the day she was home for surgery. Im sure the pure pumpkin & other tips should help soon. Km more worried for his pain. Is he doing any better now? Please keep us posted. I will be adding him to my prayers tonight xox

~Chris & Kylie

Minneapolis, MN
Member Since:
23 April 2016
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1 October 2016 - 7:32 am
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Hi  - really hoping that after 1 day or 2 on the Gabapentin you begin to see a big difference for Charlie. I wonder if the stress of nerve pain wasn't keeping him more bunched up, too, and keeping his bowels from moving things along.

Please check in today and let us now how Charlie seems today!

Lisa, Minneapolis

On October 27, 2016, nearly 6 months after amputation, and 18 months since his cancer likely started, we lost Pofi to a recurrence of Soft Tissue Sarcoma in his spine quite suddenly.  His canine sister also succumbed to cancer on March 1, 2019 - we lavished her with our love in the interim, but life was never quite the same without her only real canine friend. Cliff kitty had to leave us, too, suddenly, in August 2019. Lucia kitty grieved all these losses, but helped us welcome two new Lurchers into our home and our lives, Shae and Barley.

Blog: Pofi, Peripheral Nerve Sheath Tumor Amputation

Maryland
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21 September 2016
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1 October 2016 - 11:20 am
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Hi everyone,

So the good news is he pooped last night at midnight - the bad news is he was still up every hour with the thrashing around where he contracts and curls his surgical area in pain. I dont know if it's neuropathic pain or muscle spasms but now it's the weekend so I can't talk to the surgeon to tweak the dosages . I can add the Ace they gave me if needed, although he's is already pretty sedated, maybe it will keep him asleep during these pain contraction episodes. 

I'm just so upset he is having this difficult recovery and what the vet describes as "worst than most." I know we didn't have much of a choice but I really feel so helpless and don't know what to do.  Each day I hope for some improvement and there isn't any other than him being able to sleep now between the hourly episodes (which is huge compared to the anxiety and pain levels before). It's so hard to take. I can't leave his side. 😓

London, UK


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15 December 2015
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1 October 2016 - 11:40 am
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It's great news Charlie's pooped! It's also great that he's now sleeping in between the episodes which, as you say, is a big change from before. But I totally, totally understand how upsetting it is that he still seems to be in so much pain and it's hard for you to know how to help him. You've been great at advocating on his behalf and insisting the vets realise what is going on and do something to try and address it. I've no experience with Ace or Gabapentin so I don't know how long they take to work. I'm sure others will come in and advise. You haven't mentioned the 'hot spot' again. I'm not sure what you mean exactly, but did the vet say anything about that? Might you be able to post a photo? There's so much experience on this site, that someone is very likely to be able to suggest what it is, and whether it could be in any way related to Charlie's pain. 

This will get better, I promise you. I'm just so sorry you're having such a difficult and distressing time. Stay connected. We're all here for you. 

Big hug for you both,

Meg and Clare (and Elsie Pie) xxx

Meg, Mutt, aged around 13, adopted 31/12/2009. Sudden explosive right elbow fracture 06/12 (caused by IOHC), diagnosed with End Stage Arthritis 03/15, Total Elbow Replacement 08/15, problems with healing leading to skin graft & skin flap surgery, Chronic Infection leading to implant breakdown. Became a Tripawd 9th March 2016. 
Lives with Mum, Clare, watched over by Angel Pie and Angel Billie
My life as a MEG-A-STAR 


Virginia




Member Since:
22 February 2013
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1 October 2016 - 11:52 am
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Okay, there IS something to celebrate as an IMPROVEMENT! YAAAAAAAAAY FOR POOP!!poopicon_png

I'm certainly not a vet, but the ACE definitely sedates (including respiratory) so, if you can hold off...just sayi '

Is the Gabapentin once a day or twice? How much does Charlie weigh? Not sure why it woukd be having all these muscle spasms...certainly nerve pain can happen.

The Vet needs to get to the bottom of this...and if you need a second opinion, you need ri get one. This Vet is an Orthopedic Surgeon?

I can only imagine how stressful this is for you..and Charlie too!! To see your beloved dog in pain is gut wrenching. You are exhausted and stressed out beyond words.

This is a "forecd choice" decision and one many of us second guesss during recovery. Right now you feel like you did this TO him...we get that. But as this rough spot, really rough spot, of recovery is over, you WILL be so glad you did this FOR him!

You're doing the gentle massage, a lot, right? What did the vet do when he was in the hospital? Did ne manage the pain? What aboht the "infected pelvic stump"? Did he address that? Can you send us a picture?

STAY CONNECTED! Keep us in the loop. Post every hour...we're here. TRY a dd catch a nap when Charlie naps.

((((((((((((((((((((((((HUGS))))))))))))))))))))))))))

Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle and Frankie too!

Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

Maryland
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21 September 2016
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1 October 2016 - 11:58 am
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Hello,

Thanks for your response, he has a very tender area at the part of his incision that he sits on if he is in a sitting position - which he really isn't doing anymore. Just laying down now with an occasional walk to potty. We are warm compressing it and applying neosporin and it does seem a lot better. It's no longer raw. The vet described it as a dermatitis similar to a hot spot. It still bothers him a bit but not like before.

Now it is just these cramping contractions of his whole hind area. He basically needs to be asleep or he will have it. Only seems controlled between 2-3 hours post meds until 5-6 hours post meds in an 8 hour cycle. I'm wondering if the meds should be staggered so they aren't all ending at once. 

Thanks again for all the help

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