"split " abdominal muscles...anyone? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 13 Old 10-13-2002, 01:09 AM - Thread Starter
 
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since my ds was born, the muscles that run verticly down my tummy have been "split" . i think they do it when you are pregnant and then they supposedly go back , but mine havent. there is a huge gap between them where , creepily, it is just skin and then my guts! my loose stretched tummy flab actually FALLS INSIDE THE GAP when i lay on my back. so just picture a 2 inch crevace running vertically down my abdomen.

ok so my nurse midwife said this was not a big deal ( i asked about it when ds was 6 wks, now he is 8 mos) but i read in a book that if the muscles seems "split" like this that i should see a doc. because of the conflicting opinion and cuz i no longer have insurance, i havent gotten another docs opinion on it yet.

the problem with it is that today i was having some pain around my belly button, kinda on the lft of it. when i pressed on it it seemed only related to my belly button, which pokes out in a really ugly way like a hood since the birth btw! and is kind of a weird lump. i couldnt feel pain any deeper than this weird lump. all day it got more and more severe until it was painful to hold ds. i layed on my back on the floor and gently pinched the belly-button-lump, and i felt it change in size, and kind of a gross feeling , and then the pain was gone! i looked at it and i realised that the only explaination for this is that my intestine must have poked out through my muscles, and gotten stuck when i was standing up!!!!

is that gross or what??? now does this sound remotely familiar to anyone else and do you have any advice ?? i am pretty freeked. sorry this was long, its hard for me to explain such a visual thing on here.

thanks

stirringleaf
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#2 of 13 Old 10-13-2002, 01:41 AM
 
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Caveat - I am not diagnosing here. I'm an RN, not an MD.

The separation itself is not a reason to see a doctor. There are exercises (which your CNM could show you) to help you bring the separation back together.

However, the soft, painful lump around your belly button sounds like it could be an umbilical hernia, in which case you need to see a doctor *now*. If it is, it has to be repaired by surgery. Basically, your intestine can get strangled by poking through the hole. If it happend once, it will probably happen again. And the way you poked it back in could do damage.
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#3 of 13 Old 10-13-2002, 02:26 AM - Thread Starter
 
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i hope you are still there cuz really if you mean NOW it is late at night here and is it an emergancy??? i feel a little nauseated, but it could be the banana bread i ate plus being nervous aobut this. other than that i feel just fine, the pain is gone. i hope someone can tell me there isnt a nurse line here, and i have no insurance so that means urgent care and i dont have money ......ughghgh
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#4 of 13 Old 10-13-2002, 02:57 AM
 
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I PM'ed you.
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#5 of 13 Old 10-15-2002, 04:16 AM
 
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stirringleaf,

Are you okay? Did you see a doctor? My husband had the same thing. He had to wear a support device until his operation 3 weeks later. He had an endoscopic procedure done & was home the same day.


I wanted to add a note about insurance. If you can; get insurance coverage before you are seen for this. Otherwise it will be considered a "pre-existing condition (insurer will not pay for it later on).
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#6 of 13 Old 10-15-2002, 01:05 PM - Thread Starter
 
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...i dont know if i am okay...not to be negativer, just that i havent seen a doc yet and i am still clueless about my exact condition. i am going today to pick up forms for a low income insurance plan i found out about. i also found out i can get insurance thru my college, only i missed the deadline so i would have to wait till next semester. i have been living with this for at least 8 months now, so i am hoping i can go a few more weeks till i get insurance so i dont end up with a pre-existing condition dillemma.

by the way it is soooo lame that paperwork is the only thing that stands between me and seeing a doctor....its totally stressing me out!

if your husband had it could you describe to me what the lumps looked like? i have a big poking out belly button, and it is soft and i always just thought it was some kind of fatty deposit or some weird harmless thing. i have two smaller lumps above it. i thought these were just the result of getting all stretched out and that it was nothing. well it is the result of getting all stretched out , either way, but it seems like it probably is a hernia.

it doesnt hurt right now, but yesterday it started to. i realised that i have also had a dull stomachache for maybe a week or so. i have been eating kinda junky food and have a cold so i didnt pay attention to the stomach ache either. now i am hyperaware of it and am afraid i will end up in the emergency room! this is really scary for me, so any of your prayers/positive thoughts would be most appreciated!

~stirringleaf
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#7 of 13 Old 10-16-2002, 12:29 AM
 
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My husband's hernia bulged out about an inch when he first showed it to me. It was just to the left of his umbilicus. It was pretty tender. I will find an online resource for you. Not a substitute for a doc, but information is always good.

I do know that the umbilicus is a common site for hernias.
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#8 of 13 Old 10-16-2002, 02:33 AM
 
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Okay, here is some info that i found:

Diastasis recti is the term for the separation of linea alba (midline). This is supposed to be correctable with proper exercise. But first some info on hernias...

Which of these do you think you may have?



Symptoms and Signs of Reducible Hernia

-Symptoms increase with amount of pressure on contents (i.e. just ate a meal)

-Mass present on standing or valsalva ( forced expiration, for example when we are passing a bowel movement or bearing down to have a baby)

-Mass reduces when supine (lying flat on back) and relaxed


Irreducible Hernia (Incarcerated hernia)

-Mass remains palpable when patient relaxed and supine
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#9 of 13 Old 10-18-2002, 01:15 PM
 
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hi

I have "split" tummy muscles too. I haven't done anything about them. It happened with my first son, who will be 4 in Feb., and it didn't really effect my pregnancy with second son. I did the exercises my midwife told me to do, but it only got a little smaller. I also have a herniated belly button. I think thats what it is. I have not gone through with any surgery because of breastfeeding, and having two little ones requiring me to carry them. My youngest will be 2 in a few weeks so maybe one of these years, although he still nurses. I have no family where I am and husband works a lot, so its very scary for me to through with. It is nice to know someone else has this condition too, and I am not a freak.

peace,
mama bc
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#10 of 13 Old 10-18-2002, 06:22 PM
 
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I too have the split muscles. I could probably feel my organs if I tried. lol! I saw a doctor and she wanted to do surgery, but then her senior came in and said that since I was not bulging out there was no reason to do surgery. If it bulges then it's a hernia.

My ob/gyn said I have the worst case he's ever seen but thinks I'm fine, just suggested wearing a support belt with the next pregnancy to prevent it from becoming worse.

I would definately get it checked out and if you are not happy with what they say get another opinion.

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#11 of 13 Old 10-19-2002, 03:17 AM
 
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oh wow! mamabuttercup, i feel the same way you do reading these posts. there should be a diastasis recti support group. teehee

i too have it. i also have the ugly "eye" out-y bellybutton....and it used to be so sexy pre-babies

stirringleaf, i hope you're able to see someone. insurance and the cost of healthcare sucks. maybe your midwife could check it out again without charging you? and then she might be able to let you know if she thinks you ought to see a doctor?

my abs were extremely spread during my second pregnancy (like, 2 hands apart or so). about 5 weeks later, i started the exercises. when my daughter was almost 1 year old, i even went to a personal trainer for 8 weeks. never did they come back together...they are still about an inch apart. i've read that the best thing i can do now is get my abs strong.

surgery for diastasis recti usually isn't covered by insurance companies unless a hernia is involved. without the hernia, most insurance companies consider it cosmetic (whatever : ) that really irks me. i hope to have more children, and i don't know how having diastasis recti will affect that, or if even i had the surgery if it'd be worth it or helpful to just have it possibly happen again?

it's good to meet others that have it too. because as mamabuttercup said, it's nice to know i'm not a freak.
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#12 of 13 Old 10-20-2002, 04:56 PM - Thread Starter
 
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i am so relieved there are some others with this that are ok and not in the emergency room! mine is the palpable kind of hernia. my belly button bulges out, and then there are two smaller bulges above it. i have been living in fear of the emergency room since i started this thread, but everyhitn i have heard so far has indicated this isnt an emergency type of thing (yet) but that it could oneday be. mamabuttercup does your herniated bellybutton ever hurt? mine does until i "push it back in" . i discovered this week that i get pain there if i have gas, i guess the bubbles push it up? and so i think i am really just getting the air out? so its like i hjave a baloon for a belly butten i guess. ew.

those with the bumped out belly button....how long have you had it? and yes the split abdomon is very creepy about the organ touchinbg thing. i am very afraid that because oif the hernia i wont be able to have another baby...i had a c-section and now this...did any of you have c-sections too?
does anyone know if you can have a baby after a hernia like this and if you risk getting more hernias???
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#13 of 13 Old 10-22-2002, 10:08 AM
 
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My belly button really started to bulge when I was pregnant (which was 7 years ago). It still bulges but then I still have a big overweight gut (different story for a different time). Anyway, my belly button hurts only when pressure is applied to it, then it hurts really bad. I do feel a hole when I push in on it, and my belly button pops out when I cough.

A surgeon did diagnose me with an umbilical hernia when my younger child was about 1-1/2 but told me the surgery could wait until I no longer had to pick her up on a regular basis. That surgeon's now retired so I will get it taken care of eventually. It doesn't cause a lot of pain.
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