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Thread: Debating colostomy but still have questions

  1. #1
    Senior Member Josh A's Avatar
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    Debating colostomy but still have questions

    As some of you that have read my posts may know my pain is continuing to escalate. I have the Central Pain which I'm not addressing right now, it's the rectal pain. So, after going to the Colorectal Surgeon I learned I had a chronic fissure (tear in the anus) that was causing a great deal of pain and contributing to the Central Pain. I did have a botox injection in the rectum to promote healing, and the results haven't been the best. So, that brings me to this point. Which is I'm considering doing a colonostomy.

    I did have a good talk with the Dr. and still have preop and a meeting with the stoma nurse. So, I have several chances to get more questions answered. But I think it is always best to ask people that have gone through it, or know someone who has.

    Do you still get constipated with this done?

    How heavy is the maintanence on it considering there's no more digital stimulation and digging at stool that won't come out.

    Do u still have bowel movements rectally? I know u have to do a flush from time to time to remove the mucous.

    How long does the recovery from the surgery last? I know everyone is different but the usual recovery seems to be four to six weeks on most surgeries.

    What are some of the common problems you run into?

    I have more questions than this just can't think of them right now. However, with the problems I've had with my bowels, since my injury I think this would be best and I have the support of my Neuro/Spine Dr. and of course the Colorectal Surgeon. I also think it will relieve a great deal of pain rectally and maybe even a little from the nerve pain. So, if you wouldn't mind to list what u think are the pro's and the cons it would be much appreciated.

    Thanks!!

    Josh
    Many Blessings,
    Josh


    So we can say with confidence, The Lord is my helper, so I will have no fear. What can mere people do to me?" Hebrew13:6

  2. #2
    Moderator Obieone's Avatar
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    Hi Josh

    I did a quick search for you to find a few of the better discussions we've had on this subject - I'm sure you will find answers to most of your questions. All the best ....

    http://sci.rutgers.edu/forum/showthr...ight=colostomy
    http://sci.rutgers.edu/forum/showthr...ight=colostomy

    Obieone
    ~ Be the change you wish to see in the world ~ Mahatma Gandi


    " calling all Angels ...... calling all Angels ....walk me through this one .. don't leave me alone .... calling all Angels .... calling all Angels .... we're tryin' and we're hopin' cause we're not sure how ....... this .... goes ..."
    Jane Siberry

  3. #3
    Moderator Obieone's Avatar
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    ~ Be the change you wish to see in the world ~ Mahatma Gandi


    " calling all Angels ...... calling all Angels ....walk me through this one .. don't leave me alone .... calling all Angels .... calling all Angels .... we're tryin' and we're hopin' cause we're not sure how ....... this .... goes ..."
    Jane Siberry

  4. #4
    Senior Member Josh A's Avatar
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    OBIEONE thank you so much for the links. They were very very informative.

    Can anyone else tell me some post surgery hints? I know we are all different but what bags/pouches are better as far as brand. I'm trying to eliminate the bags that have the least success.

    The links given to me above were great and I'm not asking for everyone to keep repeating themselves I just had a few questions for people who have gone through it. I'll keep searching the forums for those answers. If you have time I am mainly concerned about the immediate post surgery questions. What is it I'm looking for when choosing afterwards. There was a lot of mentioning just changing the bag when full. Was that meaning to empty it or fully change it? If a person irrigates in the morning religiously does that help to get on a morning routine just the dig stim i do now. With morning irrigating does that help me to get empty so through the day its less to deal w/. I guess will the bag just be there for the purpose to catch leakage? Final question I think, how often do you have problems w/ it overnight? By that i mean it getting to full and getting all over. I am a c/4/5 incomplete so I will not be able to do anything w/ it by myself. Does anyone think that should be a problem? I have family n a caregiver around most of the but alone usually at night.

    thanx again all,
    Josh
    Many Blessings,
    Josh


    So we can say with confidence, The Lord is my helper, so I will have no fear. What can mere people do to me?" Hebrew13:6

  5. #5
    Hey Josh, I had a Sigmoid loop done in March of this year. I went from 4 hours on the pot to a routine change of the bag when needed,so far maybe twice a day. It's almost like when I was ab. I take a shower every other day so change the "pad" on the stomach then. I have gone four days without changing it. the bag has filled full maybe once or twice and never so far, in a compromising time.

    I use Hollister stuff just because that is what they used in the hosp. I'd like to try some other company just to see what they have. I'll wait to see what others recommend to you.

    I was in maybe four days. It took about a week for things to start flowing normally. It was more me getting used to it.

    I don't have to irrigate and have had no discharge from the rectum. I do check sometimes but so far nothing. Other than having the occasional fart noise coming fgrom the front of the belly, I have no complaints. Course I'd rather not have one but it is far less daunting than I ever imagined. Its nice not having to worry about if a bathroom is accessible or not and if I'll have success sitting on the pot.

    I save so much time now that I had to start a new hobby, Native American flute making.

    Keep us informed on how its going. We're with you all the way. Patrick

  6. #6
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    most companies will give you samples by the way, so you can try them out.
    T7-8 since Feb 2005

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Obieone View Post
    Hi Josh

    I did a quick search for you to find a few of the better discussions we've had on this subject - I'm sure you will find answers to most of your questions. All the best ....

    http://sci.rutgers.edu/forum/showthr...ight=colostomy
    http://sci.rutgers.edu/forum/showthr...ight=colostomy

    Obieone
    Bless you, Obieone, you're a jewel, I was dreading the work to hunt up all those old threads. As often as this comes up, and important as it is, and considering all the imperative info in those threads, it ought to be a sticky post, IMO.

    Good luck with your decision, Josh, it was one of the most liberating moves I made..after 10 years of dealing with the alternative.

    .

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Josh A View Post
    OBIEONE thank you so much for the links. They were very very informative.

    Can anyone else tell me some post surgery hints? I know we are all different but what bags/pouches are better as far as brand. I'm trying to eliminate the bags that have the least success.

    The links given to me above were great and I'm not asking for everyone to keep repeating themselves I just had a few questions for people who have gone through it. I'll keep searching the forums for those answers. If you have time I am mainly concerned about the immediate post surgery questions. What is it I'm looking for when choosing afterwards. There was a lot of mentioning just changing the bag when full. Was that meaning to empty it or fully change it? If a person irrigates in the morning religiously does that help to get on a morning routine just the dig stim i do now. With morning irrigating does that help me to get empty so through the day its less to deal w/. I guess will the bag just be there for the purpose to catch leakage? Final question I think, how often do you have problems w/ it overnight? By that i mean it getting to full and getting all over. I am a c/4/5 incomplete so I will not be able to do anything w/ it by myself. Does anyone think that should be a problem? I have family n a caregiver around most of the but alone usually at night.

    thanx again all,
    Josh
    Not that things can't go wrong, but I personally have only had the pouch fill at night to the point of concern, just a few times in my 10 years having one.

    As to changing the pouch or emptying it, and when to do that, it is discussed in the threads posted by Obieone. Some use 2-piece systems and just change the pouch when it's full, and not the wafer (what Patrick referred to as "pad"). Others use the one piece pouch/wafer system, and change it as a unit when full. These, and your other questions should be answered by the ostomy nurse who handles your case. They will help you decide necessary supplies, and your other concerns are pretty much dependent on the type colostomy you will get.

    An important tip, especially at your level of injury: Request the pouch that has a gas vent with charcoal filter to prevent it from filling with gas.

    Again, all the best with it, hoping it gives you the pain relief it did me.

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