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Thread: Colostomy Questions For a Quad

  1. #111
    I respectfully disagree with SCInurse. Vented bags do have an odor. They are no more or less effective than putting a pinhole in covering it with scotch tape… From my own personal experience with my husbands bag. The only time they ever smell is when we're changing it or if the seal on his bag has broken. If the seal is broken… It is not an overwhelming smell and one that I can't smell unless I stick my nose within an inch of the bag… Close to it to see if it is his imagination or if it is real. He is c5/6 and after 10 months Was back to transferring himself into bed and he does sleep on both sides. He tried to transfer back into bed earlier than that but transferred into bed on the same side where the back was… You can guess what happened. The next time he tried he transferred into bed on his other side. No problem since. That was four years ago. The bag is audible sometimes :-) but we just laugh… It's not ever too loud. But if we are in public he usually has reset on the side closest to the bag and if possible we said at the end of the table. But even if it were to make a noise people just assume he farted like anybody else. But the good news is there's nothing to smell :-). And it settle. He changes his bag every third day. He doesn't have finger dexterity but he does place the bag on himself. And during the day he is capable of emptyingit himself. He uses a Hollister lock and roll bag. Personal message me if you would like more details. He Wishes he had that much much sooner as he is been paralyzed since 92. The whole bowel program before involved suppositories, commade chairs and took hours… Led to autonomic dysreflexia… A lot of frustration and a lot of failed attempts. I am happy to give you more details if you would like.

  2. #112
    Senior Member dnvrdave's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Denver, Colorado USA ---- C5/6 Complete 1985

    Colostomy and Emptying Urinary Leg Bag

    I bend all the way down (chest on knees) to empty my urinary leg bag (several times a day). Would that cause a colostomy bag to burst if there was something in it? Or would the pressure make it try to fill, and cause a blowout because it can't fill? Bending forward is the main way I empty my bowels now (on the commode chair), so the afternoon already can be tricky, when I'm emptying the leg bag a couple hours before my evening bowel program.

  3. #113
    Unless you are putting direct pressure on the bag with some degree of consistency in the lbs per sq inch, you should be ok. You could try placing a bag in the general area and doing your normal leg bag emptying routine to see what happens.

  4. #114
    Senior Member dnvrdave's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Denver, Colorado USA ---- C5/6 Complete 1985
    I had sigmoid colostomy surgery 16 days ago, and I'd like to weigh in firsthand on a couple questions. For me, there is no odor, except when changing or emptying the bag. I use M9 or Adapt drops in the bag and take one Devrom tablet per day.

    I had 2 days when I smelled a strong odor (I have a very sensitive nose), but no one else smelled it (including StevieP). I think the bag was not snapped on all the way (I should have checked better), because I found it had popped open one morning when I woke up in bed. Fortunately, the only mess was a stain on the wafer edge, but not a leak under the wafer. We changed the wafer anyway, just to be sure, and it had not leaked.

    So my odor fears are gone. Now, it's only a fear of fart sounds in quiet public places, like elevators (I live on the 18th floor). I know I can't avoid farts, and I'll probably try to ignore them. They usually occur while I'm eating/drinking or soon afterward. For now, I'm just trying to not eat right before I go out, but that will surely change. I've always eaten lunch at my desk at work, and I go back to work in a few weeks. That should be fun! One person suggested putting a pillow on my lap. I guess I'll try that if I'm feeling desperate, or I'll go out to lunch (since the colostomy gives me more free time!).

    To avoid a peristomal hernia:
    I currently hang my urinary leg bag on the side of my wc, covered up by a handkerchief. The pants have a zipper halfway down the thigh, so the catheter tube can come through. This works great to empty my leg bag into a toilet (if I don't let it get too full) without bending all the way forward (my old way), but I don't really like it in public. I also put a towel on my leg to hide the tubing. I have a JB-3 leg bag emptier on my wc, but I'm afraid to hook it up because my leg spasms could pull the tube off (and I don't want to strap or velcro my foot down). So the jury is still out on leg bag emptying.

    As a C5/6 complete quad, I still can't quite empty or change the colostomy bag on my own. Since the stool has gotten thick, we are changing it every time (twice a day) because it's easier/cleaner than emptying thick stool. I have a nurse every morning, so it's only the evening when I want/need to be independent (besides emergencies). Last night, I successfully snapped on a new bag for the first time. I put thin cardboard (with a semi-circle cutout) under the edge of the wafer to create a harder surface to press against (or pull against, when removing the bag). Necessity is indeed the mother of invention.

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