This patient support community is for discussions relating to ostomy, colostomy, diet and nutrition, gastrostomy ileostomy, jejunostomy, ostomy reversal, sex and relationships, stoma, urostomy, and wound care.
I'm a 43 yr old woman and just had an emergency colostomy done on Jan 11, 2011. It was the result of a ruptured colon due to diverticulitis. I was septic and nearly died. Ive been home for almost a month now and am still trying to get used to the bag. It seems everytime I try to go somewhere, theres an "issue" of some sort. I hope I wont be a prisoner in my own home due to this. I was having some runny stool problems and the drs said its normal for a while, but I found that a good bran muffin everyday helps a bit. Ruby, my stoma, is located very close to my incision site and as a result, one side of the wafer just wont stick, and blowouts are VERY common and frequent...ugh. Im trying tape now, but Im still having to change the wafer every other day due to leakage...any help here? Also the skin around the stoma, under the wafer is very itchy...Benadryl helps but will it ever stop? I also have been told that I am a good candidate for reconnection surgery in 6 months, but from what I've read so far..almost all bad...I'm even more confused about it.
I had an emergency ilostomy in Dec 2008, appreciate its not the same op but thought I would share my experience hopefully it will be off some use. Had an op which took 2 hrs then the emergency op which took 4 hrs. A colleagues father in law has just went through same ops as me and I was looking for help sites for him.
Had a reversal at 3 mths surgeon advised at the time that if it was a family member he would recommend against it, but I was determined to get rid of the bag. My sister a nurse recommended that I wait for 6 mths for the reversal. Private medical op, and thought I knew best, I went ahead with the reversal, was a wrong decision.
How I would recommend waiting at least 6 mths, get fully fit, back at work full time etc, then go for the reversal. Its hard at the beginning but worth it, 2 yrs on, mostly a horrible memorary....... I found go back to a basic diet, add things slowly if they dont work try something else, but take it slow, eat small portions often, and not 2 much veg at the beginning. bit like a baby introduce new things slowly, you will have to be near a toilet a lot at the beginning, and even 2 yrs later I have problems when I'm stressed or not feeling so great. At the end of the day 1st few months is the worst.. Good luck
Reading your post took me back to when I had my emergency ileostomy surgery on January 4, 2010. The first month was HORRIBLE, all I could think was "how can people say you can live a 'normal' life with this when all you do is worry that something will go wrong because that's all that has happened, it's nothing but problems". BUT, the good news is as time goes by it DOES get better, but only because you sort of become a 'master' at taking care of your bag...LoL.
Also, don't be scared about being 're-connected'. I got my bag on January 4, 2010 and had my reversal surgery on June 28, 2010. I will be completely honest with you... the first couple of months are horrible!!! You will spend quite a bit of time in the bathroom. BUT, if you eat the right things (food that will thicken up your stool) it's not as bad. I was told it takes up to a year to get back to what will be your new 'normal' and they weren't lying. I am now 8 months out and just within the past month can go out without fear of an 'accident' (the same fear I had with the bag). But, it does get better with time!!
In regards to skin issues my ostomy nurse and I tried just about everything from powders to pastes to clear it up and nothing helped, actually felt like it was making it worse. When I went for a check up to see my surgeon he suggested taking off the bag and covering the stoma with gauze to prevent letting it flow everywhere and put maalox on the infected area and let it air out for about 45 minutes. I did that and afterwards put a thin layer of A & D ointment on it and within 2 days the skin was almost completely healed. I also started using "stomahesive" which is a paste that goes on the wafer around the stoma for extra protection from leakage. It works miracles!! If you don't have any of that, go buy some!! It is well worth the money!! I hope this helps!! I know just how horrible and miserable it can be with irritated skin and the constant worry of a leak!! If you have any other questions or just need to talk, I'm only a message away! =)
have you remeasure your stoma?it will shrink. also let me recomend putting desenex powder on irritaded skin blow off and apply an barrier wipe,let dry apply appliance. make sure you only use soaps without moistuized and always make sure area is good and dry.i use a blow dryer on low.
don't let people dicourage you on reversal.I am a member on another site and there have been many succsesful reversals. I now have an ilio.but my 1st stoma was reversed in 2002 and had no problems at all.ended up with ilio in 08 because of ovarion cancer return and tumor attaching to bowle.
wishing you well,jan
Your story is like a mirror image of myself. I am a 43 year old female and had emergency surgery because of a ruptured colon due to diverticulistis (that I didn't know I had) in March 2011. I also have the same problems and am scared of having the reversal in July. This is sounding too soon from what I have read. Hang in there and Good luck to you !!
Going to try the maalox and gause. Haven't been this bad ever. Had my colostomy for eight years. Cancer is back, I'm on chemo and I think that's the culprit. Right now I'm using Neosporin and airing out.
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