I saw my surgeon last Thursday.
The MRI scan and Gastrografin x-rays show that my abscess is now much better defined. There are no longer any tracks leading off it, and it appears to conform closely to the shape of the endosponges that we were using to drain it. In addition, the content of the abscess is now felt to be much “simpler”; so probably containing less (no?) infection.
However, the join in my bowel that the abscess is connected to has started to contract. This is positive because it’s a healing response, which is what we are trying to achieve. However, it’s also negative because if left unchecked it would ultimately close off my bowel completely. So, it’s good to see the healing, but unfortunately it’s in the wrong place, and will need to be countered.
To do that I’m going to be pulled back into hospital for another small operation under general anaesthetic on Friday of this week. The surgeon will expand the join in the bowel (essentially “stretching” it) and make sure that the opening into the abscess from the join is still sufficiently large to allow the abscess to easily drain, and so remain infection-free. I suspect they will also either remove or replace the stent in my kidney, as the existing one is now at the end of it’s life.
The surgeon feels that I ought to be OK to go home that night, and then should be OK to go back to work on Tuesday after the Bank Holiday weekend, though I may feel “a bit under the weather” during the weekend itself.
After that procedure, the surgeon will then be able to ensure the join in my bowel remains correctly open as I attend his normal outpatient clinic. Which doesn’t sound exactly pleasant, but does at least mean there would be no need for any more general anaesthetics. Which has to be a good thing.