Colostomy patients who do not irrigate have essentially the same choices available for those with an ileostomy. However, because colostomy patients produce a more solid waste, they may lean towards closed ostomy bags. Additionally, colostomy patients might select options with charcoal filters to absorb odor and let gases out. Odor is according to studies one of the top deterrents that ostomy patients face before re-entering the social scene. Gases, aside from the obvious, are important to evacuate so as to avoid a “ballooning effect” where the bag inflates and becomes more evident.
Colostomy patients who irrigate may replace bigger size ostomy bags for a stoma cap or a mini-pouch. Irrigation is an alternative that provides more freedom of movement and can make evacuation a much more manageable situation.
Considerations When Using A Colostomy Bag
- If you are new to using colostomy bags, it’s a good idea to consult with an ostomy nurse. She can help you get the right fit for your particular situation: stoma size, stoma shape (retracting, telescoping, flushing), and peristomal skin anatomy.
- If you are using a one-piece-colostomy bag system, you must change the whole unit. If you are using a two-piece system, you need to change only the wafer (the whole system including the bag is changed less frequently).
- If there is a leak from under the wafer, the bag/wafer must be changed.
- If there is pain or itch, the bag/wafer must be changed.
- If there is fever, the colostomy wafer will deform and more frequent changes will be required.
- If your colostomy surgery was recent, changes will be more frequent. Every two days or more. You should not go over 7 days without a changing your colostomy bag system.
Purchasing Colostomy Bags
To acquire Colostomy Bags, please go to the Colostomy Bags section in the Ostomy Supplies menu. You will find alternatives from different Ostomy Suppliers.