Speak to a member of our Information Support Team
(Call-back service – 24h answer machine)

020 8973 0011

or email
Beating Bowel Cancer Community

Bowel cancer treatment and side effects


Stomach cramps post surgery

Has anyone had their entire large bowel removed, and their small bowel reconnected to their rectum, with no bag needed?
This is the situation I am in, three weeks post surgery now, and whilst I now have some energy back, I am struggling to eat and gain weight because whatever food hits my stomach (all low fibre atm) I immediately get cramps from wind. Buscopan is helping but I just feel full so quickly and don't have much of an appetite, despite being hungry a lot of the time! I've been told the cramps will settle down, am I just being impatient or will I forever experience cramps like this?!
Desperately want to eat better and feel fitter before I start chemo on 23rd July.


@Jade . I had the same surgery 18 months ago . Three weeks post surgery is very early for major surgery and things settled for me although still have to be careful with diet ( exacerbated by chemo ). Speedy recovery but take lots of rests ! :x::x:


Thank you for your reply @Jane39 - good to know things do settle down. Its so frustrating feeling like this but everyone keeps telling me it's not that long post surgery - although to me it feels a lifetime as kind of existing at the moment whilst waiting to feel better! I'll try to be more patient. Am keeping a food diary now to keep an eye on what food causes the cramps.


Hi @Jade . A food diary is a good way forward. Good luck with chemo :x::x:


@Jade I had the same surgery. I was in and out of hospital and eating nothing (on IV nutrition) for the first month or so as I had bowel obstructions. You are only 3 weeks post surgery so be kind to yourself. I do appreciate that it feels like it will last forever though. Have you tried smoothies? I was on those after I got out of hospital, they advised a liquid diet for a couple of weeks due to the obstructions. If you add nut butters you can make them high calorie to help with weight gain. Bit gentler on the bowel too. If it helps I am now 3 months post surgery and can eat everything but oranges (which give me awful cramps). Food diary is a great idea.