The week before Mother’s Day last year I was experiencing excruciating back pain. On Mother’s Day I went to the ER and had a CT scan done. Horrified at what they saw I was admitted to the hospital with mesenteric venous thrombosis, splenic vein thrombosis, portal vein thrombosis, and sepsis. Basically clots around my spleen, liver, and intestines.

After emergency surgery I woke up to find out half of my small intestines(7ft), gallbladder, and my appendix were removed. 5 days in the ICU and 7 more days outside of the ICU I got to go home where I spent a month recovering.

I just had my 28th birthday and here to answer any questions you might have!

more proof

For the past 4-5 months I’ve been having reoccurring fluid build-up in my abdomen called ascites. I typically get 7-8Liters drained each time resulting in a 20lb difference! I’ll be answering your questions while I have that done today!

nsfw? Proof

Comments: 65 • Responses: 27  • Date: 

NHYetiMonster29 karma

Holy cow 20lbs of fluid?! Does that like slosh around? Does it stretch you out over time? Does it hurt? Sorry that was a lot of questions. Best of Luck and thanks for the AMA!

Slick_Ricky23 karma

Give me as many questions as you’d like! It doesn’t slosh because my skin stretches as the fluid builds. The 3-4 days before a drain are where it hurts the most. Endless back and hip pain. Nausea and hunger at the same time constantly. Heartburn, trouble breathing, skin hurts. It gets pretty taxing, but my skin has been resilient so far!

maggiefiasco5 karma

I used to help my patients get Parecentesis done! Some of my acute liver failure/ascites patients had to get paras done 2-3 times per week. How often do you have to have this performed? How many liters do they draw off at a time? What’s your long term POC for your ascites at this point?

Slick_Ricky6 karma

I get a para done every 2 weeks, but it could probably be every week and a half at this point. They usually get between 7-8Liters but today I got 9.6 Liters Out. That’s a record for me! Next week I may be getting a TIPS put in.

A TIPS for anyone reading this is a shunt put in to connect 2 major veins in order to bypass your liver. My blood will then be unfiltered as it circulates my body. That comes with certain risks, but it’s my best shot at relief.

montyfull4 karma

So you're experiencing 3rd trimester pregnancy. ;)

Slick_Ricky8 karma

Short of getting kicked in the spine and actually giving birth I’m told it’s exactly like pregnancy. I get pregnant every 2 weeks. I’m more than just an object :(

GoodDogvvv12 karma

Were there any warning signs? I'm the same age and just developed varicose veins and pain in that area and have been super paranoid about clots. Like can you think of any symptoms leading up to this?

Are you able to work and have a normal life after this ordeal?

I'm sorry this happened to you. So many people live unhealthy lives and never have and serious issues from it. It sucks this happened but in some ways you're lucky because you're alive at least.

Slick_Ricky12 karma

Varicose veins are a pretty common thing. Start wearing good compression socks when you sit down for a long period of time. Even when you sleep they’ll still help. Make sure you stay active!

Biggest warning sign would be ANY pain when you eat or shortly after. Abdominal pain is one of the most common symptoms in an ER visit, but mine felt like I had glass shards in my stomach. I don’t want to scare you into getting this checked out, but I would if I were you.

GoodDogvvv7 karma

After hearing your story I'm going to get it checked. It's unlikely I'll have problems but why wait for something to already happen like this. I keep always thinking I'm 28, I dont have to worry about health problems but that's obviously not true. Definitely need to clean up my diet and get active.

Your story upsets me being the same age. I'm sorry your life got turned upside down like that. Life already has enough difficulties.

Slick_Ricky8 karma

I’ll be keeping you in my prayers. If you need to talk about anything just shoot me a message. That also goes for anyone else reading this comment. I’m here.

Malaska58 karma

Will you be dealing with the ascites for the rest of your life as a side effect, or will it end up going away? Glad to see that you’re doing alright!

Slick_Ricky12 karma

Your body can develop collaterals(kind of like little pathways) to compensate and to divert the extra fluid. I’ve recently started to develop some but not enough. On Friday I have a consult with a radiological team that wants to put a shunt around my liver to bypass it and(hopefully) eliminate all future ascites! It does come with risks.

lectroid7 karma

Look up Julia Sweeny's comedy show "God Said 'Ha!'" She talks about her brother who had fluid build up in his head, and got a shunt put in, and he loved it so much she did a whole routine on it.


it's very funny. As a fellow hospital-frequenter, there's a REALLY dark medical humor category only fellow sickos can get.

Slick_Ricky3 karma

Hospital humor can be the best humor. I make jokes all the time, but my mom is having NONE OF THAT.

Drunk_DoctoringFTW1 karma

Are they thinking a TIPS procedure?

Slick_Ricky3 karma

Yes they are. Problem is my portal vein is garbage so it’s tricky. They have to reconstruct if first and then put the shunt in. They think I have a good shot.

Drunk_DoctoringFTW2 karma

You got this, my dude!

Slick_Ricky3 karma

Thanks! I really hope so. I’m lucky in that all of my organs are very healthy even after all of this.

Yeswecano8 karma

Hi! Thank you for your AMA. Did the doctors find why all this happened? Chance, genes, lifestyle...?

Slick_Ricky32 karma

Thanks for the question! I feel as though lifestyle had something to do with it. I was overweight, but I also wasn’t a heavy drinker. The best possible guess is an autoimmune disease called lupus anticoagulant. It has around a 35% false/positive test rate, but it’s come back positive 3 times. It causes an increase in clotting in places you don’t want them to happen.

ObesesPieces30 karma

Holy shit. It was actually lupus.

In all seriousness congrats on your recovery. I'm sure it was a terrifying ordeal.

Slick_Ricky31 karma

Cameron, Foreman, and Chase would finally be correct! (Kind of) lol

HaleComstock7 karma

Is it antiphosphilipid antibody syndrome ? Are you currently taking oral anticoagulants ? Ps: glad you made it!

Slick_Ricky3 karma

Yup! Love me some blood thinners.

EyeofAgamotto1261 karma


Slick_Ricky2 karma

yeah. So far its worked very well. I've never felt any sort of adverse effects and I don't need to monitor it to adjust my dosage ever. Very nice drug.

mirkle4 karma

Just in case someone wonders why it's called lupus anticoagulant, it's actually a misnomer. Lupus Anticoagulant is not an anticoagulant, it does the exact opposite and causes clots.

Slick_Ricky2 karma

That’s why I added the kind of! It really isn’t the same, but Houses team needed the W.

pengu50554 karma

Do you have any recollection of the surgery? Or were you out the whole time? Maybe things that were going through your mind? I wish you the best of luck and thanks for the AMA!

Slick_Ricky13 karma

I remember bits and pieces before the surgery and after. They maxed me out on morphine before they thought to do surgery and I remember morphine did absolutely nothing. Then they started giving me dilaudid, but that barely started to take the edge off. I remember counting down the minutes till I could have another shot of something to take this pain away. At first the surgery was exploratory to see what it looked like. After 10 minutes she pulled the camera out and cut into me because she was watching my bowels die in real time. Afterwards I cried when I learned what happened. First 2 days in ICU I barely remember anything. Thank you very much.

pengu50554 karma

Wow, amazing. Sounds pretty scary to be honest. I'm glad you're with us. Thanks a lot for sharing :)

Slick_Ricky3 karma

I really appreciate that. Thank you so much!

Doppel-Banger4 karma

So.... Did you died? Don't leave us hanging!

Slick_Ricky9 karma

physis813 karma

Are you on blood thinners?

Slick_Ricky5 karma

Yes. Chances are about 99.9% that I’ll be on blood thinners for the rest of my life. Luckily I’ve had 0 problems with my blood thinners. That’s a win, right?

physis813 karma

Yes! Coumadin?

Slick_Ricky2 karma


EyeofAgamotto1261 karma

Good choice, that is the best/safest one!

Slick_Ricky1 karma

I've been very happy with it!

BurgerPleaseYT2 karma

I'm assuming you have changed your eating habits. Do you still eat burgers? What's your favorite burger joint?

Slick_Ricky8 karma

Yeah soooo I’m now terrible with most forms of dairy. I also need to avoid as much salt as possible. My diet consists of lean meat, veggies, and fruit. I’m also limited to drinking 50oz of fluid per day. I have a burger about once a month that I usually make myself. My favorite burger joint

LOWLIGHT772 karma

What happens when you eat dairy? And why the limit on fluids?

Slick_Ricky9 karma

I don’t have enough intestines to properly digest all the dairy. Gas, bloating, cramping.. it’s usually pretty bad.

The fluid restriction is because I have a “leak” in my body. 54% of the fluid I drink ends up as ascites fluid that needs to drain. 50oz is just enough to keep me hydrated and sane. Great question!

WolffBlurr2 karma

Do you know where your “leak” is? I would assume it’s not in your GI system because that could potentially cause lots of internal infection problems right? So it would be your liver or kidneys or something like that?

Also would taking lactase pills allow you to eat a little bit of dairy? Like, even if you’re not lactose intolerant in the conventional definition, to supplement your digestion?

Slick_Ricky3 karma

Great questions. The lactose pills don’t work. Not sure why but I’ve tried whatever I can get my hands on. None of it has worked. Milk and ice cream/custard are my enemy. Sucks to live in the dairy state sometimes.. lol

According to my nephrologist there is a very good chance my leak is somewhere near the end of my large intestine around my colon. Not 100% sure but that’s what the scans are pointing to. At this point no medicine has or will help me so I have few options left.

juicypoopmonkey1 karma

Was this the only time you had symptoms or did you have chronic problems that just went too far this time?

Slick_Ricky4 karma

I had weird feelings for about 2-3 weeks. It was only bad enough to do something about it after a week. I as putting in TONS of hours at work and figured all my back pain was related to that. Even went to a chiropractor for a bit.

Slick_Ricky1 karma

Thanks all for the questions! Feel free to message me about anything else. Remember to take care of your bodies the best you can. Have a good night!

86LsM1 karma

So sorry to hear you are going through all this! I was just wondering if you will have to get that fluid drained for the rest of your life? Iv seen that procedure done and it’s not nice at all so feel for you! I also can’t have dairy so know how much that sucks! Milk ruins me 😩and cheese is/was my fave 😢 keep your chin up and I hope you get better soon

Slick_Ricky2 karma

Thank you for the kind words. I’m looking into having a procedure done that will hopefully eliminate the need to get drained. I’ll be making that decision tomorrow on Friday.

86LsM1 karma

Well whatever you decide I hope it goes well, and I’m here if you need to vent/talk

Slick_Ricky2 karma

I very much appreciate that offer. I just might take you up on that.