3 failed surgeries, should I consider Cleft Lift?

DoesItEnd

New Member
I'm so happy I've found this site. I'm sure we all feel the same way, it's heartening to know that there are other people in situation and we're all in this together.

I've had this disease acutely for over 6 years (male, mid 20s). I had an excision in 2014, 2015 (seemed to go well), and again in 2019 (a Limberg flap with reconstructive plastic surgery). Unfortunately, though the wound seemed to be healing fine for about a month after the most recent procedure, within 6 weeks the wound had reopened, and I found out that some tracts weren't removed in the procedure (I believe for fear of excising too close to the bone). The tracts are somewhat close to the anus and are about 6 inches towards the lower back, based on medical notes. I have since met with another colorectal surgeon whom I had asked about the cleft lift procedure, and he recommended I not pursue it since my situation seemed to be more complicated. Instead, he recommended another excision with reconstructive plastic surgery for the flap again. Unfortunately, I had a lot of hair in the area that is difficult to consistently remove.

After reading about the great results and recovery process of the cleft lift, I was getting my hopes up so it was very disheartening to hear that. In about 2 weeks I'm going to see Dr. Wadie (WakeMed practice in Raleigh, NC) after seeing good things posted about him on here, and am considering seeing Dr. Immerman in Wisconsin as well.

I have 2 specific questions:
  1. Has anyone been in a situation where the cleft lift procedure was not recommended because their situation was more complicated? If so, how did you proceed? Is the cleft lift still the preferred procedure?
  2. Are there any tried and true ways to effectively remove hair in that area? I know this is something that I will have to work on myself to aid in prevention of recurrence in the future.

Thanks, and wish everyone afflicted with this a speedy and painless recovery so that we can all go back to owning our lives again.
 

cifland

Helpful
Hey man, my situation was definitely more complicated than normal because I had marsupialization of the wound from a previous surgery, thought it isn't the same as your situation. I lived in NC and went to see Dr. Wadie and he said he would absolutely still do the cleft lift and everything went very smoothly. I still have soreness after sitting even though it's been 4 months, which Dr. Wadie said could be the case after so many surgeries in the area (4 total now) but I am very glad I had the cleft lift nonetheless. Dr. Wadie is a very gracious man so feel free to ask him any and every question you want and even follow up with him later on through the Wake Med portal if you have further questions.
 

DoesItEnd

New Member
Hey man, my situation was definitely more complicated than normal because I had marsupialization of the wound from a previous surgery, thought it isn't the same as your situation. I lived in NC and went to see Dr. Wadie and he said he would absolutely still do the cleft lift and everything went very smoothly. I still have soreness after sitting even though it's been 4 months, which Dr. Wadie said could be the case after so many surgeries in the area (4 total now) but I am very glad I had the cleft lift nonetheless. Dr. Wadie is a very gracious man so feel free to ask him any and every question you want and even follow up with him later on through the Wake Med portal if you have further questions.

Thanks for your response, really sorry to hear that. I didn't know marsupialization was a technique that could be used. I'm glad to hear your recovery is going well other than the occasional soreness. I'm really looking forward to it. In your case, how long did the immediate recovery period last before you could walk comfortably/drive?
 

cifland

Helpful
Dr. Wadie said that marsupialization was much more common 10+ years ago and less so now but it was actually mostly effective in my case and at least ended recurrences even though I had re-openings in the wound often. I could walk somewhat normally in about a week and probably 2-3 weeks before I was walking completely normally. It was about 3-4 weeks before I felt comfortable enough to sit and drive. That is definitely longer than most people but it sounds like your recovery will probably be more similar to mine than not since your surgery will be more complex. Please let me know if you have any more questions!
 

DoesItEnd

New Member
That makes sense. That's what I'm envisioning. I would do it as soon as I can, but I have a work related certification in June that I need to prepare for so I'm hoping after that I'll be able to schedule the surgery asap. Thanks again!
 

ncman

New Member
I’d also recommend Dr. Wadie for a cleft lift if you’re in the N.C. area. I originally had surgery in 2013 and unfortunately had a reoccurrence right around the new year. I just had my surgery yesterday and when I got home I could immediately sit without too much discomfort. The area is definitely more sore this morning, but nothing “painful” in my opinion.
 

DoesItEnd

New Member
I’d also recommend Dr. Wadie for a cleft lift if you’re in the N.C. area. I originally had surgery in 2013 and unfortunately had a reoccurrence right around the new year. I just had my surgery yesterday and when I got home I could immediately sit without too much discomfort. The area is definitely more sore this morning, but nothing “painful” in my opinion.

Sorry to hear about the recurrence, but glad that surgery with Dr. Wadie went well. I'm only going for a consult for now but if it goes well and is promising, I'm very much looking forward to it!
 

DoesItEnd

New Member
The meeting earlier this year went well, I'm having the procedure done within the next 2 weeks, really looking forward to it and will provide an update in case anyone is interested, it feels cathartic to write it out.
 
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