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A Chinese Man Got His Poop Removed After 22 Years

How a rare condition led to a groundbreaking operation in China

In China, doctors did something unique for a 22-year-old man who had been constipated his whole life. They found out he had a rare disease called Hirschsprung’s, which made it very hard for him to go to the bathroom because some nerve cells were missing in his colon. Because of this, almost 13kg of poop had built up inside him, causing a lot of pain and health problems. His parents thought it was just a small issue and didn’t get it checked out when he was younger. But as he grew up, it turned into a big problem.

The doctors at Tenth People’s Hospital in Shanghai decided to help him with a big surgery. They took out a 30-inch piece of his colon that was filled with all that poop. It took them three hours, but they did it! This surgery was a huge relief for the man. Before, he looked like he was more than nine months pregnant because of how much his colon had swollen. Now, he could finally start to feel better and live a more comfortable life.

Photo by Piron Guillaume on Unsplash

Understanding Hirschsprung’s Disease

Hirschsprung’s disease is a rare condition that some people are born with. It affects the colon, the body part that helps us get rid of waste. In this disease, some very important nerve cells are missing from the colon. These nerve cells typically tell our muscles to push food and waste through our intestines. Without these cells, the waste doesn’t move like it should. Instead, it stays stuck in the colon, making it very hard for a person to go to the bathroom and causing discomfort and health problems.

Because Hirschsprung’s disease stops the colon from working right, people with this condition can get very constipated. They might be unable to go to the bathroom for days, weeks, or even longer. Over time, this can make the colon get big and swollen, a condition doctors call a ‘megacolon.’ It’s serious because it can lead to dangerous infections and other health issues if it’s not treated. That’s why it’s so important for doctors to figure out if someone has Hirschsprung’s disease early on so they can help them feel better.

The Case of Delayed Diagnosis

For the young man in China, finding out he had Hirschsprung’s disease took a lot longer than it should have. When he was just a kid, his parents noticed he was having trouble going to the bathroom but thought it wasn’t a big deal. They believed it was just a small problem that would go away on its own. Because of this, they didn’t take him to see a doctor to get checked out. This delay in diagnosis meant he had to live with a lot of discomfort and health issues for many years. It wasn’t until he became an adult that doctors finally discovered what was really wrong.

Source: Wikipedia

This long wait made his condition much worse. By the time he was 22, his colon had filled with nearly 13kg of waste. Imagine carrying something that heavy around with you all the time! It caused him a lot of pain and made his belly swell up so much that he looked like he was going to have a baby. The delay in treating his disease shows how important it is to listen carefully to our bodies and get help when something doesn’t feel right. Waiting too long can make things a lot harder to fix.

The Surgical Breakthrough

The doctors removed a 30-inch section of his colon that was packed with nearly 13kg of waste. It was a huge relief for him because that part of his colon was not working and only made him sick. After the surgery, he finally started to feel better. This operation was a huge step towards improving his health and his life.

Parents and guardians must watch for signs of constipation in kids to prevent situations like this. If a child has trouble going to the bathroom regularly, it shouldn’t be just brushed off as a minor issue. A doctor visit can help determine if it’s something simple or a sign of something more severe like Hirschsprung’s disease. Early diagnosis can lead to better outcomes and prevent the condition from worsening.

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