Poopwatch 2014

6 Feb

Yeah, it’s come to this.  And since I’m the queen of “Hey, I’ll talk about that!”, here we go, another poop post.

(It’s funny how I get a burst of comments when I post about poop – yes, this is a safe place for everyone else dealing with this crap – literally and figuratively.  Miss Phoebe understands your pain and trauma, come sit next to Miss Phoebe…)

So I posted several days ago about the hurdles we went through to find Maura something new to help her poo, as she won’t always poo on her own.  And how doctors don’t seem to understand this.  But her new doctor prescribed liquid senna, with a “Give every day for 30 days”.

The morning after the first dose, we had success.  We were filled with optimism.

By the end of the week, we were full of fear, Maura was full of poo, and my laundry pile had once again become something to fear because of all the little accidents.

I posted about our despair on Facebook, where a friend who has played this game as well said she’d gone to a motility specialist and he didn’t recommend liquid senna, as the potency fades the longer it sits on a shelf.  Okay then.  He did recommend the chocolate senna.  I asked what that was – yeah, Ex-lax.  Just plain old Ex-lax (*he actually also recommended the WalMart brand according to her.)

So we broke out the Ex-lax.  Because Maura was getting more and more miserable, and we were becoming more and more fearful of what would happen when everything did finally take effect.

Nothing happened.

We tried again.

Nothing happened.

Do you KNOW how scary it is to know your child has days worth of senna sitting in her colon, and refusing to let anything out?  I even tried a tummy massage, to help stimulate things inside.  Yes, I’ve looked up “Colonic massage” – that’s how invested I am in all this.

Last night we decided to give her a break.  Do nothing, and call the doctor in the morning to figure out what the next move was.

Go figure, this was the morning she finally pooped.

So we’re chucking the liquid senna (which just draws water to the colon to soften the stool, as I found out after reading up on it – which is not the problem, sigh) and sticking with the Ex-lax, but only for emergencies. Oh, and burning the washing machine after all this.  Poor washing machine.  The things we put it through.

And thus ends another glorious saga of a week in a special needs family.


16 Responses to “Poopwatch 2014”

  1. doodahbuddha February 6, 2014 at 1:58 pm #

    First to comment! Woohoo poopoo!

  2. jo February 6, 2014 at 1:59 pm #

    poor maura! i am 66 years old now but as a child i had the same problem. i lived with my great-grandparents and then with my grandmother and i remember a lot of what they went through trying to get me to poo. i had to swallow a tablespoon full of mineral oil every night for years. (not that it worked all that well)
    does maura give any reason for not wanting to poo? does she complain that it hurts to go?

    • phoebz4 February 6, 2014 at 2:07 pm #

      Her problem is that she has low muscle tone, so things are naturally a bit sluggish, but then she is on a medication that has a side effect of constipation as well. So it’s a double-whammy. Then she had a bad experience one time, and decided after that she hates to poo. sigh. It has gotten better, but it’s a long haul issue.

      • jo February 6, 2014 at 2:18 pm #

        except for the low muscle tone, maura and i still have the same problems. i am on several meds that cause constibpation……and pooing is often so painful i feel like i should have a new baby as a reward for going. i recommend stool softeners with laxative, plenty of water and some exercise, even walking helps. pooing now has to be something decided by my body and not something my mind can control…….if my mind is able to stop the poo it will. still.

  3. saracvt February 6, 2014 at 2:09 pm #

    Yeah, and exorcising the toilet..(“Come out, foul demons of excrement—er, no, on second thought, STAY THERE!!!”)

    This week, we’re dealing with Maddy’s massive anxiety. Added to all that you describe, we have that she has picked up somewhere the idea that she may have to be operated on and have the poop taken out surgically. OF COURSE she is deathly afraid of this, as she is of nearly everything (this is a child who thinks “Toy Story 3” was a scary movie and she’s ELEVEN). I don’t mean she freaks all the time; she often does smile and laugh, but her fears are outsize and exaggerated; we’re working on that in therapy.

    And it really doesn’t help with her toilet training. She’s a long way yet from surgery, but she’s often convinced she’s going there tomorrow and I’m just hiding it from her.

    Life in another special-needs household. But hey, how ’bout them Seahawks?

  4. franhunne4u February 6, 2014 at 2:12 pm #

    I had that problem as a child, too – it lasted well into my teen years, I am afraid. I really had to learn to take care of it and convince myself how much better it was to let things go even though painfully than to keep them in just so it would not hurt now .. but more later …

  5. Denise February 6, 2014 at 3:45 pm #

    Phoebe, my daughter used to have that problem, and we had the same issues of it not being that her stool was too dry, so we talked to her pediatrician and he recommended dulcolax suppositories. Well they did the trick, we break them in half and insert as directed then she sits and has a bm within a couple of minutes. It’s like she needs to have her anus stimulated, the suppository drops almost as soon as she sits down. I’m very thankful that we got off the miralax because you never knew when it was going to kick in. These days she even says ‘pository when she needs help pooing, a HUGE step in our lives. She doesn’t always need a ‘pository, but when she does that’s what works for her.

  6. Amy S. February 6, 2014 at 4:16 pm #

    We have pooping issues over here too. I have no advice as we are still trying to find the right thing, but I feel for you, I have an enormous amount of empathy. Chin up plunger down!

  7. Hope February 6, 2014 at 4:48 pm #

    We’ve had serious repercussions due to my SN daughter’s poop issues. As of 12/4/13, learning to cope with an ileostomy. She had a twisted sigmoid colon, then had a perforation in her small intestine…emergency surgery led to complete removal of her large intestine resulting in an ileostomy. Now we are learning to deal with digestive changes due to this and the anxiety and comprehension issues that go with it for her.
    I don’t tell this story to scare you, but I wish we had known that this was a danger for her. She always refused to poop. We had her on a toileting schedule to try to deal and she often wouldn’t go for a few days at a time. We had a disimpaction a couple years back (fecal matter removed by hand while she was sedated.) We got serious about her nutrition and thought since her poop wasn’t as big around as her thigh anymore that we were doing something right, even though there was a delay sometimes.
    Little did we know her colon was so stretched out that it ended up twisting on itself, making her very ill and prompting me to go to the ER where the above story initiated. We’ve been told that children with neurological issues/disorders often have motility issues. We are still working on this, even with the ileostomy. I urge you not to give up until you find what works for your daughter! Keep up the great job you do with her.:)

  8. freedomfromthefireprogram February 6, 2014 at 5:38 pm #

    Phoebe have you tries a magnesium supplement? The body only absorbs what it needs and the excretes the rest in the stool causing loose stool. We use this for my cousin who is special needs. She hates pooping and will hold it for days. She cant hold the loose stool and this keeps her going. Once a day. My aunt has even got good at knowing her routine and plunks her on the toilet with the iPad around her regular pooping time. Just a thought. Good luck! Sent from my BlackBerry 10 smartphone on the TELUS network. From: Herding CatsSent: Thursday, February 6, 2014 1:49 PMTo: tsarra@yahoo.comReply To: Herding CatsSubject: [New post] Poopwatch 2014

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    phoebz4 posted: “Yeah, it’s come to this.  And since I’m the queen of “Hey, I’ll talk about that!”, here we go, another poop post.

    (It’s funny how I get a burst of comments when I post about poop – yes, this is a safe place for everyone else dealing with this crap – li”

    • phoebz4 February 6, 2014 at 5:50 pm #

      No – I think too much magnesium might interfere with her seizure meds. But we’ve tried other things that’s supposed to cause loose stools and it doesn’t work.

  9. Kerith Stull February 6, 2014 at 5:49 pm #

    Oh my! What a torturous situation. I pray this is the start of good road for all of you!

  10. jenniferpaige213 February 7, 2014 at 8:45 am #

    I only poop about once a week and my daughter complains her tummy hurts before she needs to poop. We’ve been taking pro-biotics – they have gummies for kids. It seems to really help both of us.

    • phoebz4 February 7, 2014 at 10:38 pm #

      we have them, I need to remember to give them to Maura – thanks for the reminder!

  11. kelly February 12, 2014 at 10:04 pm #

    Our daughter had the same problem … she would cry and cry and cry because her tummy hurt so bad. So we started giving her two gummy fiber bears each morning. It took a few days for the fiber to catch up, but when it did she was pooping (solid) like a champ and still is. The moment she doesn’t get the fiber she stops pooping. The other issue we had to battle was not having poop in her panties because she wasn’t wiping. We added it to her daily routine (she thrives on a very strict routine) in the morning and we haven’t had a wiping issue in over two years. Now, the first several months there was A LOT of monitoring the wiping process. Good luck.

    • kelly February 12, 2014 at 10:08 pm #

      P.S. We chose fiber gummies because they don’t interfere with any of her meds (including seizure meds) which even the powder fiber can. ALSO, if you don’t drink enough liquids with the powder it makes everything WORSE!

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