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Thread: Colostomy questions

  1. #1

    Colostomy questions

    hello all, looking for some feedback if you would care to share. I've read lots of information about colostomy and the overwhelmingly positive feedback. Even though I'm not excited about the idea, I scheduled the surgery with the thought of "just get through it and things will be better". However, my surgery date is next Wednesday, February 6 and I'm having serious last minute jitters. A couple of questions:

    1. They marked the location as a above and to the left of my bellybutton (Just below my rib cage). The nurse said that this is higher than usual. But, I'm in a rural area without a lot of experience with spinal cord injury experience. I'm trying to visualize where the bag will go. I don't think I can tuck it in my pants. Do you put it on sideways? Is this the ideal location?

    2.Noise in quiet environments worries me. I've read about something called "stealth belt" to help conceal and muffle. Does this work? I've had trouble wearing binders as they tend to ride up and resemble more of a tube top. I blame my pear shaped body. Any feedback on keeping things discrete?

    Thank you very much for any thoughts!
    Jason

    C5/6 Complete - water skiing accident 1994.

  2. #2
    It was the best thing I ever did since being hurt . Having a Colostomy . Yes , to me seems location is high , mine is lower , actually at my belt line . The noise happens once in a while , trust me no big deal , you laugh about it after you get used to it , Seriously ! It is So much better than bowel program. I was nervous at first also .

  3. #3
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Duck View Post
    It was the best thing I ever did since being hurt . Having a Colostomy . Yes , to me seems location is high , mine is lower , actually at my belt line . The noise happens once in a while , trust me no big deal , you laugh about it after you get used to it , Seriously ! It is So much better than bowel program. I was nervous at first also .
    I agree 100%! After 24 years of doing bc my life is so much better with a colostomy. Before bc ran my life now I do. The noise happens occasionally but I would rather have some noise happening then having it build up in my stomach until bc. Second best decision I ever made (best decision is marrying my wife).

  4. #4
    Senior Member pfcs49's Avatar
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    IMO your location won't be very good to live with. It will be much more visible through your clothes than a lower location, and times when you fill the bag, will be a lot for the flange to suspend.
    The center of my ostomy is just over three inches below my ribs, and perhaps just above my "belt line" (which is a moving target in a chair). If I was able-bodied/standing, perhaps a belt would be higher and across the ostomy.

    Don't look back! I'm 23 yrs T12 and got my colostomy this time in 2012. Wish it was done a log time ago!
    Your life will get so much better.
    69yo male T12 complete since 1995
    NW NJ

  5. #5
    Looking back I can't believe that I agonized over the decision so much. It has been wonderful from a quality of life perspective.

    In regards location, I decided to go to the left and above the beltline (where they're recommending for you) because I thought it would be easier to manage. I thought that it'd be easier to see, easier to manage, and better to manage if there were potential accidents. I'm glad that I went with this location, but it's a personal decision. Yes, you need to think about wearing a Stealth Belt or sweatshirt to hide the ostomy device - but you'll be surprised that people just don't notice. Good luck with your surgery.

  6. #6
    @Jeft - have a look at this website https://www.veganostomy.ca . Although it's not SCI-specific, I found the material (esp the videos) to be very helpful. The reviews for stealth belt and other products should help. Yes, I wear the stealth belt and it rides up a bit. But the good news is that the belt is adjustable so you just need to make sure it's not too tight around your belly.

    So far I've been lucky that noise in quiet environments hasn't been an issue. When I'm in boardroom meetings I've perfected an approach to cross my arms on my belly, which should muffle any noise. Others may have suggestions and tricks.

  7. #7
    Thanks for the feedback guys! I'm sure that I will be happy once I get. Just fear of the unknown. I've been watching reviews here https://www.veganostomy.ca/product-reviews/ which is helping out.

    I think I had my chair tilted forward too much when they were trying to determine placement of the stoma. I'll see if I can have them move it down. Is the stoma fairly durable? I'm a C5-6 quadriplegic. So, I thrust myself forward to force my legs against my abdomen to generate a cough. If I lower the stoma, it will be thrust against my legs. Will that cause a problem do you think?
    Jason

    C5/6 Complete - water skiing accident 1994.

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by HockeyFan View Post
    @Jeft - have a look at this website https://www.veganostomy.ca . Although it's not SCI-specific, I found the material (esp the videos) to be very helpful. The reviews for stealth belt and other products should help. Yes, I wear the stealth belt and it rides up a bit. But the good news is that the belt is adjustable so you just need to make sure it's not too tight around your belly.

    So far I've been lucky that noise in quiet environments hasn't been an issue. When I'm in boardroom meetings I've perfected an approach to cross my arms on my belly, which should muffle any noise. Others may have suggestions and tricks.
    @hockeyfan I think it was one of your posts that led me to https://www.veganostomy.ca/product-reviews/. It's a great resource. I really appreciate the suggestion!
    Jason

    C5/6 Complete - water skiing accident 1994.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Tim C.'s Avatar
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    Last minute jitters? Yeah I would too. That’s a major operation with big recovery., Not sure if my body would handle that

  10. #10
    Senior Member Tim C.'s Avatar
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    Can you take care of the class to me yourself or do you have a caregiver you must rely on?

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