Successful cleft lift!

Friend

New Member
Hi all,

I’ve been lingering around on this forum for awhile, and I’m so happy to finally be able to tell my pilonidal healing story.

Just yesterday I had a cleft lift done by Dr. Immerman in Eau Claire, WI. His clinic, Evergreen Surgical, is right next to the Sacred Heart hospital where he does the procedure.

First of all, I can’t say enough good things about Dr. Immerman, his staff, and the nurses and doctors at the hospital. They were all immensely kind, comforting, and confident in what they were doing. They have done this many times!

I’ve had pilonidal disease for 3 years, and had it lanced once. In addition, it always flared up and I was taking trips to urgent care to get antibiotics. I was always so nervous about traveling because it would become sore or flare up, and I also have a desk job which irritates the area.

Dr. Immerman has a 97-99% success rate and I’m confident that I’m healed for good. The day of the surgery I was able to sit normally in the car for the 2-hr ride back home. The local anesthetic that he injects after the procedure really kicked in about an hr into the drive. Besides right after the procedure, I haven’t had to take any pain meds including Advil!

I will update this post as time goes on to prove that I am healed for good. ☺️ I thank the Lord for his sovereignty, faithfulness, provision, and healing throughout all this. Jesus has been by my side and comforted me and has given me an awesome family who loves and cares for me.

My mom and I prayed right before I was hooked up to the IV and sent to the surgery room. We prayed that the Lord would preside over the procedure and keep me safe—and he sure did! All glory to God.

I’ll be available with any questions if you have them. I’d love to help anyone who is considering this procedure!
 

Unknown2

Very Helpful
Hiya mate glad to know your finally healed And doing well just wanted to know how far down the scar is and any troubles you have after procedure also did you have a drain
 

Friend

New Member
Hello! Thanks so much. :D Okay, I'll be specific about my particular surgery......beware, this will be a long post!

The scar

For me, the scar is approximately six inches long and extends to within an inch or two of my anus. It sounds kind of intense, but I don't think my butt will look too bad after the wound heals!

Bowel movements

I was nervous about bowel movements, but they do not hurt. I've been taking an herbal detox tea every other day to make bowel movements easier and to prevent constipation. Constipation leads to straining which of course will be bad for the incision. You can find this specific tea at most grocery stores, but honestly any sort of gentle herbal detox tea will do. (Link here: https://www.traditionalmedicinals.com/products/smooth-move/) You can also use a stool softener or normal laxative, too. I just wanted something that was gentler on my body.

The drain

Yes, I did have a drain for six days. I just got it removed today, so I'm officially a week into the recovery process. The drain was four inches under my skin and did not hurt, but it put some pressure on the wound when I laid on my back or sat down; however, the drain was mostly an annoyance because I had to be careful to not get it caught on something and pull it out of me. All in all, it wasn't too bad. The surgeon removed it quickly and painlessly without having to use any numbing cream, etc.

Feeling tired

I would say day three was hard for me. My body was under "surgery fatigue," so even though I had gotten enough sleep I was still feeling weary and run down. Keep in mind for the last two weeks I had caught a virus so I had been battling muscle aches, headaches, fatigue, and some nausea on top of the flared abscess; within one week I had been to urgent care, the ER (where they incised it but found no fluid), and then off to cleft lift surgery. My body was tired!

So give yourself time to heal. In addition to getting enough sleep, make sure to take (SLOW!) walks, and little by little, get your body used to sitting normally again. You shouldn't be sitting on your side as that position tends to stretch the incision. I found that sitting on the edge of a padded chair worked best.

I just want to give a little note on walking--it's been so good for my recovery. In addition to being able to get out of the house and get fresh air, it provides blood flow to the area which promotes wound healing. Also, taking walks slowly gets your body back into its normal functioning state. That way you won't feel fatigued longer than you need to. This surgery will NOT leave you bed bound!

Just remember to walk VERY SLOW, and avoid the possibility of tripping and falling. Even stumbling on a divot in the ground (or in my case, a fallen walnut) will jolt your incision a little when you catch yourself. Just walk slow!

Final notes

I've definitely felt my body heal day by day, which is very encouraging and must faster than I expected. It's already a lot easier to roll over in bed, lay on my back, get in and out of the car, sit down, etc.

My surgeon said week three is the most fragile week for recovery. This is because the soreness is all but gone and the stitches are beginning to dissolve; however, the incision site hasn't fully healed yet so you need to still be very cautious and avoid rigorous activity until the six-week mark.

I hope that helps! Let me know if you need any clarifications!
 

Unknown2

Very Helpful
Hello! Thanks so much. :D Okay, I'll be specific about my particular surgery......beware, this will be a long post!

The scar

For me, the scar is approximately six inches long and extends to within an inch or two of my anus. It sounds kind of intense, but I don't think my butt will look too bad after the wound heals!

Bowel movements

I was nervous about bowel movements, but they do not hurt. I've been taking an herbal detox tea every other day to make bowel movements easier and to prevent constipation. Constipation leads to straining which of course will be bad for the incision. You can find this specific tea at most grocery stores, but honestly any sort of gentle herbal detox tea will do. (Link here: https://www.traditionalmedicinals.com/products/smooth-move/) You can also use a stool softener or normal laxative, too. I just wanted something that was gentler on my body.

The drain

Yes, I did have a drain for six days. I just got it removed today, so I'm officially a week into the recovery process. The drain was four inches under my skin and did not hurt, but it put some pressure on the wound when I laid on my back or sat down; however, the drain was mostly an annoyance because I had to be careful to not get it caught on something and pull it out of me. All in all, it wasn't too bad. The surgeon removed it quickly and painlessly without having to use any numbing cream, etc.

Feeling tired

I would say day three was hard for me. My body was under "surgery fatigue," so even though I had gotten enough sleep I was still feeling weary and run down. Keep in mind for the last two weeks I had caught a virus so I had been battling muscle aches, headaches, fatigue, and some nausea on top of the flared abscess; within one week I had been to urgent care, the ER (where they incised it but found no fluid), and then off to cleft lift surgery. My body was tired!

So give yourself time to heal. In addition to getting enough sleep, make sure to take (SLOW!) walks, and little by little, get your body used to sitting normally again. You shouldn't be sitting on your side as that position tends to stretch the incision. I found that sitting on the edge of a padded chair worked best.

I just want to give a little note on walking--it's been so good for my recovery. In addition to being able to get out of the house and get fresh air, it provides blood flow to the area which promotes wound healing. Also, taking walks slowly gets your body back into its normal functioning state. That way you won't feel fatigued longer than you need to. This surgery will NOT leave you bed bound!

Just remember to walk VERY SLOW, and avoid the possibility of tripping and falling. Even stumbling on a divot in the ground (or in my case, a fallen walnut) will jolt your incision a little when you catch yourself. Just walk slow!

Final notes

I've definitely felt my body heal day by day, which is very encouraging and must faster than I expected. It's already a lot easier to roll over in bed, lay on my back, get in and out of the car, sit down, etc.

My surgeon said week three is the most fragile week for recovery. This is because the soreness is all but gone and the stitches are beginning to dissolve; however, the incision site hasn't fully healed yet so you need to still be very cautious and avoid rigorous activity until the six-week mark.

I hope that helps! Let me know if you need any clarifications!
Thank you so much for the information this will definitely help me out when I get it done
 
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