With160,000 people in the UK living with a stoma, you’re not alone. Many ostomates find a toilet card useful to aid clear and efficient communication when you need to use a toilet urgently – apply for yourFREE Just Can’t Wait Card.
Our Bladder & BowelHome Delivery Servicecan also offer you expert advice from a trained nurse about stoma care and help you find the right products to manage your condition. For more information on ostomies and stoma care products call our Home Delivery Team on0800 031 5406.
Below you can read about our recommendations on ‘stoma care’, including stoma assessment and stoma cleaning:
A stoma is an opening on the abdomen, where a small portion of your intestine will have been brought to the surface of your belly and sewn in place. This type of operation normally happens if you’ve had an injury or disease in the bowel and allows your body to expel faeces in a different way. A bag is then worn over the stoma to collect any waste.
There are three more common types of stoma
Colostomy– where a portion of your large bowel (colon) is used to create a stoma.
Ileostomy– where a portion of the ileum (small bowel) is used to create a stoma
Caring for your stoma
Whilst you are in hospital, your stoma nurse will show you the correct way to care for your stoma, change your bag and order new supplies. Once you are out of hospital you will be able to order your stoma supplies through the Bladder and Bowel Community Home Delivery Service.
Stoma appearance straight after surgery
After surgery your stoma will be swollen and will likely have stitches around it. Over the next eight weeks or so, your stoma will reduce and settle into its new size. Occasionally, you may find that your stitches pull and can be uncomfortable. If this happens, inform your stoma nurse so that can assess them. If you find that your stoma remains swollen or shows signs of infection, then contact your stoma nurse or colorectal surgeon straight away.
Normal Stoma Appearance
随着时间的推移，你的气孔会改变形状或大小。这可能意味着你的袋子不再合适，你的皮肤可能会暴露在气孔袋的内容物。为了避免这个问题的发生，你应该每隔几个月检查一下你的气孔的大小。A cardboard measuring guide is normally included with your stoma bags and can be used to check the size of your stoma.If you need help, speak to your stoma nurse and then can show you how to do this and, if necessary, offer some advice on products that fit better.
Cleaning and changing your stoma bag
When changing your stoma bag, it is a good idea to assess your stoma and the surrounding peristomal skin to check it’s in good shape. Things to check are
- Is the hole of my baseplate the right size for me? If faeces come into contact with the skin it can cause soreness and irritation of the skin.
- Is there any redness, irritation, cuts or broken skin. If you do have any of these things then your stoma nurse can recommend products to help with this.
- Does my stoma look healthy? Does anything look unusual or different to you. If there is anything unusual then contact your stoma nurse for advice.
How to clean a stoma site
When cleaning a stoma site, it is important to use recommended products. The easiest way to clean your stoma site is to gently wash itwith warm water using the dry wipes provided and then pat dry thoroughly using a clean dry wipe. Avoid using paper towels as these can get stuck to the stoma, always use dry cotton wipes.It’s important to remember not to rub the stoma as this may cause it to become damaged.
The following articles may be helpful towards your stoma care journey: