DoperDocs - what the HELL is going on with my navel? (Way the hell TM friggin' I)

First, the obligatory disclaimer - I already have an appointment tomorrow with a qualified medical professional to get a real opinion on the subject. I’m asking just out of curiosity to tide me over until then. Now, on to the story.

My body has fired its latest salvo in its ongoing attempt to come up with the weirdest-ass way to knock me off. Back on Monday or Tuesday, I noticed a pain on my abdomen, just above my navel (only four-year-olds or younger have bellybuttons). It was just beneath the skin - not like a deep internal organ type pain. I didn’t think much of it, but it kept getting worse. Finally by yesterday, it was hurting to sit down or stand up and I couldn’t sleep on my stomach. Also, I could feel a small bump or lump just under the skin, or thought I could anyway. Oddly, though, there was nothing visible - it wasn’t red or inflammed or anything. So I called up and got an appointment to see the doc and went to tough it out through the day at work.

Then, a few hours ago, I felt a wetness. Here’s where the squeamish among you should go find another thread…
OK, now, for the rest of us, I went to the bathroom and checked out the situation. My navel was oozing a rather disgusting mixture of blood and some foul-smelling clear liquid. Good thing I was wearing a black shirt… Whatever it was had popped, and I did notice a decrease in the pain. I cleaned it all out as best I could with Kleenexes and alcohol wipes, but I had to keep going back in every half hour or so. My second check found a lot less blood and a lor more clear fluid in sort of an incredibly nasty slime. Anyway, now, three or so hours later, it seems to have pretty much slowed to a trickle. When I got home, I cleaned it all really well with rubbing alcohol (which didn’t sting like it would on an open wound) and slapped some gauze on it.

Now, the weird thing is that this isn’t the first time this has happened, though it is the worst instance by far. A couple years ago, I was scratching myself (yes, ladies, I’m single!) and discovered a blood clot in there the size of a pea. There was no pain, and nothing came out after I cleaned it that time, so I shrugged it off and went on with life. The only thing I can think of that might be a connection is the operation I had five or six years ago or so to have my gall bladder out. It was laprascopic, and one of the incisions was in my navel. My admittedly limited medical knowledge makes me wonder if I could have some sort of abscess or cyst or something that likes to make itself known every few years.

So, doctors, what say you? You can pit your skills against those of the guy I’m going to see tomorrow! It’ll be like a fun little challenge!

Well, first it’s good that you’re seeing a Dr.

Now, I have a situation that is sort of the same, but actually totally different. :smiley:

When I was about 12 I pierced my own ear with a darning needle. I had the earring in for about 10 minutes and then my mother saw it, freaked out and made me take it out.

Since then, occasionally I get a lump where I put the needle through, and if I poke at it it responds much the way your belly-button does. Goopy crap & blood coming out.

So, perhaps there’s a bit of scar tissue in your navel left over from the laproscope that gets irritated every couple of years - like my ear.

See - kind of the same, but totally different. :slight_smile:

My navel did the same thing about 10 years ago. Doctor said she didn’t know what caused it, but antibiotics cleared it right up and it’s never reoccured.

It was gross, though. Had to keep a wad of gauze in my navel until I could get to the doctor.

It could theoretically be possible that there is a suture left from the operation that is causing a reaction, it’s also possible that there is something more serious or something more benign.

Seriously, this could be anything from a fistulous opening to your bowel, to a large pimple and almost anything in between. Your doctor will know more when they see you.

In the mean time, keep it clean and covered with a sterile dresing, and don’t poke it!


  • I did the same but years later, bravado = stupidity


  • see a doctor, I’ve had similar things from ingrowing hairs

They need to be cut out

Many years ago, I had a very badly done appendectomy; the internal sutures they used were the non-dissolving type. It took a long time for the incision to completely close, and every once in a while, over a period of a few years, a stitch would work its way to the surface. This might ***possibly ***be something similar.

Now we know why people have bellybutton lint.

A very old surgery related seroma? (a fluid pocket for the rest of us)

I had one erupt on me about 2 weeks after abdominal surgery. Mine was painless, but made a hell of a mess for about a week. The normal life span of a seroma is about 6 months if it doesn’t erupt, FWIW.

That sounds remarkably like something that occasionally goes on with my navel (sorry, ladies - I’m taken). Do you have a hairy belly?

Hair gets in there and forms a cyst. My doctor told me there was nothing she could do for it, and I should just try to keep it clean. That’s not as easy as it sounds, as my navel isn’t too big, and I have A LOT of hair.

Something similar has happened to me on a number of occasions. Does the, erm, material that is ejected from your navel smell absolutely horrible?

Elsewhere on the web, I read years ago that it was some sort of yeast infection (or if not yeast, a microbial infection of some variety that thrives in a warm moist environment). How I got mine to stop: clean out the navel really well, then apply some of that “waterless hand sanitizer” stuff with a Q-tip, to get it in deep where the nasties are. That hand sanitizer stuff worked even better than rubbing alcohol. Keep at it, and keep your navel as dry as possible; after you shower, take extra pains to make sure it’s really really dry, even way down deep. You should be back to normal within a couple days.

But, if you don’t treat it, it’s just gonna keep on churning out that evil fluid. So get it cleaned up.

I had something similar happen about two years after my daughter was born, right along the edge of my c-section scar. I just assumed at the time that it was a hair follicle that was stitched into the scar area. My daughter’s six now, and I haven’t had a recurrence.

Don’t keep us in suspense - let us know what your doctor said!

It’s nature’s gauze pad!

Three or four times I have had a very strange feeling as if a thousand devils were pulling on a rope attached to the inside of my nave/bellybutton. Sensation lasted a minute or so.
When it happened and was over it didn’t seem worthy of a mecical consultation.
When I had an opportunity to discuss it with medical personnel I wasn’t on my list of current concerns.

Well, I’m sure you’re all waiting on pins and needles to find out the exciting conclusion. First of all, let me say that I’ll always treasure the memories of the looks on the faces of the nurse and doctor as I explained what was going on, although, on second thought, if you can give your medical care provider a look of mixed shock, horror, and disgust, that’s probably not a good thing.

I learned something about myself today: apparently I have a freakishly deep navel. My doctor expressed her amazement three or four times. In normal times, I can sink my pinky in there up to the first knuckle, which it turns out is impressive. Unfortunately, that turned out to be a drawback in this situation. The doctor had to call in a nurse to assist with trying to get some light down into the murky depths. Incidentally, she left a couple of culture swabs in there sticking up in the air when she went out to get the nurse. And left the door open. I felt like a display vase. Dignity? Not so much. She also called in a student to observe, which brings to mind Seinfeld’s adage about how it’s a bad sign when doctors are saying, “They’re doing WHAT to him? I’ve gotta see this!”

Well, anyway, after a fair amount of spelunking, she was pretty sure she saw an old suture down there a couple of times, and thought she got most of it out. It was hard to tell, because everything was covered in goo. But presumably that was the cause - an old suture left over from my surgery five or six years ago that failed to dissolve like it should have. Oh, I should also say that the nurse was using forceps to pry me open as much as possible, and she had to shoot me up with a little Lidocane because it was a wee bit painful. It was quite an operation, really.

They packed it with gauze, and I get to go back every day for the next week or so to get it repacked so it will heal correctly. Joy. And I’m on antibiotics while I’m at it. Thus endeth the Great Navel Ordeal, hopefully.

I’m really sorry I came late to this thread. I would’ve liked to try my luck with the rest.

I have an odd thought for you. For other docs reading this thread, I’m thinking of a very rare parallel to a thyroglossal duct cyst. Here’s a weird little bit of embryology for you. Sometime in the first few weeks of your existence as a zygote, all your guts emptied out into a sac hanging from your belly. A few weeks later they returned, and usually all connections close.

However, there remains a tiny connection in some people, called the omphalomesenteric duct. (Which is Latin for a duct from your bellybutton to your mesentery. Which is the blanket of fat, nerves, and vessels off which your small bowel hangs.)

The omphalomesenteric duct can close a) all the way, b) only at one end, c) at both ends but not in the middle, d) only at the other end, e) bodies do whatever the hell they want once in ten million people.

If the end of the omphalomesenteric duct at the intestines does not close, you have a Meckelt’s diverticulum.

Because your bellybutton is so deep, because you have had to have surgery before, and because you get a recurrent infection in something followed by clear slime, I was betting you have a patent distal omphalomesenteric duct.

Annoying to find out it’s merely a suture granuloma. Doesn’t completely dispel my suspicions, though.

Try this speculation on your treating physician (if he or she is of an academic bent) and see what the response is?
May I say, if you were my patient, I would’ve treated this with a Y-shaped incision…

Stupid typing fingers. That was a Meckel’s diverticulum for those Googling, not meckelt’s.

Also, nowadays there is a peculiar and annoying trend to take the apostrophe-s off eponyms, as if that makes them easier to learn, so you may also find it listed under Meckel diverticulum.

I forget who Mr. Meckel was.

I have nothing to add, other then to say that this simply isn’t true.

I was hoping for an Alien like ending. :frowning:

Do you meanfirst knucle from the tip of the finger, or from the hand going out. Mine goes to the first knuckle from the tip, and now I need to know.

Here’s another bad surgiry story kept short. 17 years ago my cousin had galbladder surgery. They did surgery yesterday to find out why she was peeing blood. Scar tissue from the gallbladder area had grown to attach to the liver.

So, no need to change from Smeghead to Smegbelly?