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Clear Ostomy bag - WHY?


I have worn an opaque bag for 30+ years.

Having issues with my old Convatec bag/flange leaking due to me gaining some extra poundage at the waist line.  Convatec reps sent me some alternative appliances.  The bags are clear and you can see your output.  WHY clear?  I hate the clear bags!!!   I have NEVER cared to look at my output while it was in the ostomy bag.  I think its a BIG turn off seeing a bag of ...well c-r-a-p.  Do people look at their output in clear bags? I assume this is a cost saving measure from the manufacturer.  Is there a medical need?  I guess people could have major blood in their stool. 

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My understanding is that clear bags are usually used for new ostomates or for those that are having an issue so, like you said, for a medical reason to monitor output. 


Clear bags are used if you need to monitor your output. That is what I was given when I was in the hospital to use. 

Poop isn't so bad LOL 💩💩💩  I have saw a lot of poop in my day LOL ... grew up on a farm (used cow patties as the bases for baseball), my kids, my pets... 💩💩💩  

Reply to SallyK

LOL …..for those of us who didn’t live on a farm it started with having babies - then pets !


Yup.......what they said.  Clear bags have their place medically.  They're also great for "shock factor" when you WANT someone to know what the bag is for!  The expression on people's faces when they see the clear bag is priceless, as they only take a fraction of a second to figure out what they're looking at, and then respond with disgust.  Opaque bags take a bit more time to understand, and the shock value just isn't the same! 

Seems when you get your ostomy most hospitals hand you a box of Hollister stuff, clear bags included.  But once you're seasoned in the ways of the want a non-clear bag.  Many of us want them in colors too! 


Reply to SallyK

A true poo professional. 😁😬

Reply to Justbreathe

One of my favorite books I used to read the kids was 'Everybody Poops'.  It was great... showed what all the different poops looked like. LOL

Reply to w30bob

I’d really like fluorescent green. 👍


I too was sent home with a “here, let me have a look” clear bag.  I’ve tried the “don’t even look” bags as well.  I like the clear so I am well aware of what is or what is not happening.  I also check to see if I really still have an Ostomy and if  it’s thriving.   I am also somewhat of a clean freak so I pour water into the bag whenever I empty and make sure it is sparkly clean (when I am at home).  There you have it - the rest of the story….jb 

Reply to AlexT

We just prayed the cow patties were a few days old when you slid into base. 😂

Reply to SallyK

Wouldn’t you know that when you picked them up to make the base lines? 

Reply to SallyK

Sounds like the voice of experience🤔

Reply to AlexT

LOL yes but we had a lot of guys that liked to be funny. They would find the patties that were crispy on the outside but soft on the inside. 💩😂

Reply to Justbreathe

I slid into more than my fair share of ripe ones. 😂

Reply to SallyK

Hello SallyK.
Thanks for the interesting insight into your use of cow pats. When we were kids we were sent out to find the ones that had been baked hard in the sun. They were easy to pick up and transport home, where they were used as a sort of fuel for the fire. They did not burn very fast  so made an efficient material for keeping the fire going overnight, so that it was still alight in the morning. 

As for clear bags, I use irrigation sleeves as my preferred choice of large bag, and they only come in clear plastic. It has never bothered me to examine my output and nobody else need look at it as I deal with it on my own. When I am wearing them, I can be confident that they will hold as much output as I could possible produce, without having to worry about finding a toilet or having a blowout.

I say, each to their own with regard to these things. We are all different and it is good that there are a variety of approaches to managing our stomas. 

Best wishes



i have clear bags so i can see where i am at and find it easier to push poo to bottom of the bag.. plenty of fancy bag covers you can buy.

Reply to patrickrichardson1946

I’ve tried some bag covers, none stay on once your bag changes shape with output or you’re active in my experience. 


I don't mind the sight of my own poop, but don't want to subject my husband to that sight, as I do tend to walk around the house with nothing on except my pouch sometimes.  I do, however want an inspection window, so I can keep an eye on things, and also allow me to move my stool to the bottom of the pouch more easily.



I have the inspection window too, Terry. The best of both worlds. I need to see my stoma when I put my bag on can see my output when I need to but can then cover everything up.


Seems most of you here have poop bags. Mines a pee bag. I'm pretty new to this, but have only used clear bags. I usually wear a stealth belt so nobody know anyway.  So, if it ain't broke I ain't fixing it.


I wear clear bags have since I had the surgery a year ago, I have had a couple retractions and surgerys so I have had to keep an eye on it... I also have cute bag covers I like to show off 😁 which I wear when I am out or a wrap .. just tell them you don't want clear 

Reply to AlexT

I will go for any color but CLEAR. 

Reply to Beth22

I never understood the whole bag cover thing.  Just seems like a money making thing.  I am a cheap skate. LOL

Reply to SallyK

Nothing like stepping in a day old cow patty in the summer when you think that hard crust is a 100% solid and dry. YUCK  

Reply to eefyjig

What is this inspection window?

Never heard of this.  What brand has this?

Reply to dmo101


Reply to SallyK

A good after dinner read.



I hate clear bags too.. but I am wearing one because it is my only option with a drainage bag without a filter  with Coloplast.

Reply to dmo101

I use the Coloplast Sensura Mio click 2 piece wafer/pouch system - opaque pouches. Here is a picture that shows the inspection window. It is a flap you lift up and underneath is a clear piece so you can see your stoma.


Reply to SallyK

THANKS for sharing the pic of the pouch from Coloplast.  Why are their products grey?  Not sure I ever met any grey people.  Little guys from outer space are grey...they used to be green and from Mars LOL.   Seriously I tried this pouch system.  I do not like all the tail closure bits n pieces.  I am old fashion and still use a clip.

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