Stoma Size Increasing: Seeking Advice

In this discussion
About this topic
The forum discussion is about a person's concern regarding the size and shape changes of their stoma after a colostomy, with suggestions and experiences shared by other members.

I'm concerned about my stoma. I had a colostomy, 9/2021. It got down to 25. It's been progressively getting bigger the last few months and sticks out at least an inch. It's now a 41 and out about an inch. I do have gastroparesis which causes heck on my GI tract. When I was diagnosed in 2013, I was given less than a year to live. I'm a fighter, but I'm tired. Any thoughts?

+ Why do people register on MeetAnOstoMate?

Our vibrant, multi-topic community enjoys 31,150 members who openly discuss their challenges, share insights, seek advice, form friendships and even relationships. We are proud to foster genuine connections with people who truly understand.

+ How can joining this website make my life easier?

Beyond the wealth of advice and tips shared by our members, registering allows you to engage in private conversations, access premium content that you cannot find anywhere else, and get answers from our unique OstoAI bot. Plus, the shared experiences here can provide emotional support that's hard to find elsewhere.

+ Is this just another medical forum?

Far from it! While we do offer deep dives into ostomy-related topics, our platform is also about connections, friendships, and even relationships. When you register, you're not just joining a forum; you're becoming a part of a vibrant, empathetic community.

Hello micheledg.

Stomas are rarely static entities and in many cases the stoma will change size and shape before settling down, and even then they might be prone to further changes. My own perspective involved seeing the stoma as a functional device for the extraction of bodily waste. It therefore does not involve a concept of what it 'should' look like in terms of size/shape/ colour/ etc. As long as it is doing what it is supposed to do, reasonably efficiently and without too much pain, then I can learn to live with it.  Living with it and accepting the limitations is greatly helped by reminding myself of the very real and practical (worse) alternatives.

My own stoma is nowadays usually size 45cm diameter and varying lengths from nothing to over an inch, depending on temperature and what I am doing at the time. In the past it has been oblong, round, bugling in places, and a bit concerning at times. However, as a waste extraction device it has mostly performed as expected, so I am grateful for that - even though I would much rather I did not have to cater to it's needs on a day-to-day basis.

As has already been said; there are far worse conditions than having a 40cm x1inch stoma, as many on this site can attest to.

I hope my reply has been helpful to you in that tricky process of adjustment to a new stoma.

Best wishes


How to Use Adapt Convex Barrier Rings | Hollister

It sounds like you are saying your stoma is both longer in length and larger in circumference. You might want to have a GI doctor or stoma/ostomy nurse check. What you're describing sounds like a peristomal hernia where loops of bowel become trapped underneath/around the stoma. This can make the stoma become both longer and bigger. However, a stoma does normally change shape/size a bit over time just like the rest of our bodies do. Best to get checked to put your mind at rest.


That's what I'm thinking. Ugh. Thank you so much for your reply!!


Thank you so much, Bill! I'm so grateful for my stoma that what it looks like, as far as aesthetics, doesn't bother me; like you said. I'm more concerned with the sudden change. Looks like I'll be calling my doctor soon. Blah. Lol  


Hi Mich, I had what it sounds like you are describing. My stoma started to bulge out way further than normal and the size of it increased dramatically (I didn't actually measure it). At the same time, my stool was not really moving normally and it turned out to be the beginning of a blockage. I went to the ER and it took several days to clear it. If your stoma is functioning normally, I would agree with Bill. It is normal for stomas to change in size. Mine changes a lot over the course of 24 hours. If you are not in pain or discomfort and your output is normal, I wouldn't worry. But it's always good to talk to an ostomy nurse to put your mind at rest. Good luck.



Thank you so much, Terry. I totally agree. Time to see my Dr.


Mich..... I'm an ileostomy gal. After 12 months of slowly shrinking, my stoma grew also. I went to my surgeon worried about it... it grew in size larger and longer out. He told me that I have a prolapsed stoma (some get it), meaning it may continue to grow out longer, like my small intestine is popping out. No need for me to worry, just a complicated case. See your doctor for a diagnosis to be safe.

* Please, do not post contact information, personal information or advertising.
All times are GMT - 5 Hours