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Running after Appendectomy

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Running after Appendectomy

Post  Peg Coover on Wed Oct 10, 2012 8:11 am

So, even though I experienced the best month of training in September and was on track for my double half marathon coming up this weekend, I suffered a severe setback.

Last Tuesday (oct2) I came down with some abdominal pain that I thought was food poisoning. The next day, pain was incredible, then settled down. Things would feel okay, then worse, for the next two days. Finally Friday evening, I went to the ER and found out I had a ruptured appendix. Surgery that night (lap, 3 small incisions) and stayed in hospital 3 days with iv antiobiotics.

I'm in NO hurry to return to running--my event is not happening for me this weekend and nothing else is in the near future. But, what is the recovery of this type of surgery? When can I expect to start to slowly make a come back? EVerything on the web says 4-6 weeks. That seems long. I see my doc tomorrow and will ask him, but I wondered if anyone had experience.

For sure, I will listen to my body (I've learned my lesson.)

PS: super disappointed about this double half. I found the event, it's an inaugural race, and signed up--my husband followed suit and a couple of friends. My training has been on! I get to cheer them all on this weekend--better make some signs!
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Re: Running after Appendectomy

Post  Dave-O on Wed Oct 10, 2012 9:12 am

I had my gall bladder removed, so not the exact same surgery, but the same 3 lap incisions. My doc told me I was clear to run as soon as the pain from the incisions would allow. I went for my first run 6 days after the surgery, and it was pretty painful. I think I took another 4 days off after that and then eased back into it. I was training full steam again within 2 week.

Be sure to discuss with your doctor whether there's a risk of internal damage. I was told for my surgery there was not, that I couldn't damage the surrounding organs, and again, the pain from the incisions was the only factor. I have no idea if the same is true after an appendectomy.
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Re: Running after Appendectomy

Post  Michele "1L" Keane on Wed Oct 10, 2012 11:53 am

I had fibroid surgery in 2005 which is similar I would assume. Doc told me the same thing as Dave's Doc, and I ran 2 miles 7 days later. I can tell you that I really lost no fitness over the week either.
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Re: Running after Appendectomy

Post  Julie on Wed Oct 10, 2012 1:03 pm

I'm going to guess like anything else they say, you need to listen to your body. After having my daughter, I ran 12 days later with my doctor's permission to go slower and just watch it. I've had other things that people have a set number of weeks to stay off running and have returned much sooner just taking it easy and walking as needed. If your symptoms or pain get worse though, I'd back off.
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Re: Running after Appendectomy

Post  Joel H on Wed Oct 10, 2012 2:32 pm

I don't have any feedback on the time frame other than what the folks have said above.

However, I just wanted to say I am sorry this came up on you like this and hope you heal quickly and smoothly.
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Re: Running after Appendectomy

Post  Mark B on Wed Oct 10, 2012 2:49 pm

One of my coworkers had a ruptured appendix earlier this year. It knocked him out for several weeks, but he's doing fine now. I'd suggest taking it easy until you feel ready to ease back into running. If you listen to your body, you should be okay.
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Re: Running after Appendectomy

Post  Jerry on Wed Oct 10, 2012 3:35 pm

Sorry, Peg!
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Re: Running after Appendectomy

Post  ounce on Wed Oct 10, 2012 3:55 pm

Glad the hospital part is behind you.
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Re: Running after Appendectomy

Post  Peg Coover on Wed Oct 10, 2012 4:51 pm

@Mark B wrote:One of my coworkers had a ruptured appendix earlier this year. It knocked him out for several weeks, but he's doing fine now. I'd suggest taking it easy until you feel ready to ease back into running. If you listen to your body, you should be okay.

I seem to have an issue with that, Mark!

Smile

Better today! Still sore. Contemplated walk to the post office, 6 blocks round trip, but decided not. Doctor's appt tomorrow.
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Re: Running after Appendectomy

Post  dot520 on Wed Oct 10, 2012 8:10 pm

Sheesh..what some folks won't do to lose a few ounces to post on the weight loss challenge. Smile

Sounds like you're on the road to recovery and bummed to hear about your race situation. Signs and annoying air horns might make you feel better.
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Re: Running after Appendectomy

Post  fostever on Wed Oct 10, 2012 9:08 pm

A ruptured appendix is very serious, many people have died from it. If it is appendicitis and removed before rupturing your recovery would probably be less, I'd say consult your doc.
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Re: Running after Appendectomy

Post  JohnP on Wed Oct 10, 2012 10:10 pm

Glad you are OK, take it easy coming back.
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Re: Running after Appendectomy

Post  Peg Coover on Thu Oct 11, 2012 12:00 pm

@fostever wrote:A ruptured appendix is very serious, many people have died from it. If it is appendicitis and removed before rupturing your recovery would probably be less, I'd say consult your doc.

Serious indeed. I am so used to 'never being ill' that I am finding it hard to comprehend! I will listen to the doctor--see him this afternoon.

I agreed to volunteer at the race this weekend, at a water station. I should be up for that.
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Re: Running after Appendectomy

Post  Peg Coover on Thu Oct 11, 2012 6:38 pm

My follow up appt was good except for one thing. Well, the good thing about that one thing was that he removed the drain tube that was in one of my incisions to help flush out the fluid. The bad thing was, when he YANKED it out, and I do mean yank, it felt like he seriously tore my insides out with it--clear to my very private parts! OMG. That was one of the most painful, bizarre experiences I have ever had.

He said when I feel like running, I can run. I don't yet, so there is no worry about going too soon! But it is encouraging to know that next week I can get out there little by little.

Very Happy

Edit: It's been about 17 hours since he pulled that tube and I feel so much better! That must have been contributing to some pain. I just took a little advil last night, no Lortab, and was able to sleep on my side! It doesn't hurt to cough or sneeze and I feel almost normal today!
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Re: Running after Appendectomy

Post  ounce on Fri Oct 12, 2012 8:28 am

Good to read. I'd say however long you can volunteer at the water station would be a good indicator of how your body feels.
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Re: Running after Appendectomy

Post  EugeneGreenie on Fri Oct 12, 2012 11:34 pm

PEG!

I had an emergency appendectomy in my twenties. What a weird thing to happen. One minute I was fine, and the next i was bent over in pain, feverish, and being rushed to the hospital. I still remember where I was and who I was with.

I am so glad that you are feeling better now that the tube is out. I'd say take it easy during your volunteering...that is a lot of time to be on your feet...and hopefully in a few days you will be ready to run easy and short?

I am so glad that you are okay!

E Greenie
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Update

Post  Peg Coover on Wed Oct 17, 2012 8:25 am

@EugeneGreenie wrote:PEG!

I had an emergency appendectomy in my twenties. What a weird thing to happen. One minute I was fine, and the next i was bent over in pain, feverish, and being rushed to the hospital. I still remember where I was and who I was with.

I am so glad that you are feeling better now that the tube is out. I'd say take it easy during your volunteering...that is a lot of time to be on your feet...and hopefully in a few days you will be ready to run easy and short?

I am so glad that you are okay!

E Greenie

Thanks E!

I ended up not volunteering because we took one of our dogs with us. So I bought some poster board and was the number one spectator on the course, which was a long time on my feet anyway! I also walked quite a bit and could tell I had been active! The second day my hips were a little tired, but all was good and I never had to take any Advil.

I ran 3 miles Monday, starting with some walking, then jogging, etc. I probably ran 2 of the 3. Tuesday I ran 4.5, with about one mile total of walking. It felt fine, except I feel tired easily.

If I count the weekend of walking, I have "worked out" 4 days in a row and so will take today off. I don't want to overdo it! However I am itching for a marathon or something to train for again! I posted in the Runner's forum about that.

Thanks for all the well wishes from everybody!
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Re: Running after Appendectomy

Post  Peg Coover on Tue Oct 30, 2012 8:29 am

Just another update, in case it will help anyone else!

After my last post, I had two runs where I got a bad side stitch, where it was even tender the next day. But last week I had 26 miles and all the runs felt good.

So 3 weeks post surgery i feel pretty much back to normal!

Now I need something to train for!
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Re: Running after Appendectomy

Post  Michele "1L" Keane on Tue Oct 30, 2012 9:04 am

Good to hear, Peg. I'm going to have surgery in late November that will affect a similar area, so I was hoping to hear this.
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Re: Running after Appendectomy

Post  jon c on Tue Oct 30, 2012 10:56 am

I am glad that you are recovering well Peg. Sorry you had to miss your races. I too had to miss the Market to Market 50k because of a broken toe in which the swelling had not gone down enough to run it.

Anyhow, glad that you are back on the roads and hopefully this will be long forgotten soon in terms of your training, Peg.

Hope that your surgery is uneventful and helpful also, Michele!
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Re: Running after Appendectomy

Post  Julie on Tue Oct 30, 2012 2:08 pm

Glad recovery is going well Peg. Michele, I hope your surgery goes well and Jon I'm sorry about your toe. I was hoping to read a 50K race report from you!
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Re: Running after Appendectomy

Post  Mark B on Tue Oct 30, 2012 2:47 pm

That's great news, Peg! Now's a great time to sit down with a list of races and plot out your next big event.

Hope your procedure goes well, Michele, and that your toe heals up without problems, Jon.
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