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Posted by leolynne, on Sat Jan 10, 2009 10:16 am
can anyone help with clearing blockages i have been awake most of the night trying to clear mine with so much pain  Embarassed
Reply by Dean99, on Sat Jan 10, 2009 6:54 pm
Hi.I have a colostomy and I take a stool softener with every meal;it helps me two ways:1)It helps the food to go through without clogging up,and 2)It makes cleaning and emptying my bag easier.
As for your blockage,Try some magnesium citrate,it is OTC at most places that have a pharmacy.Talk to the pharmacist and see what he/she says,to be sure its OK for you to try,and how much to drink.My Intestine doctor had me drink it to clean me out before a colonoscopy exam once,and boy,I didn't want to be too far from a restroom!It worked fast on me!Colyte will clean a persons intestines out pretty good,too,but,I believe that needs a prescription from the doctor.
Diet plays a role,too.Watch what you eat.Learn which foods affect you differently.Something bothers you,don't eat it no more.Peanut butter jams me up,so I avoid it.And popcorn,I love to smell it,but I don't dare eat it!Corn on the cob or canned,affects me,too.Refried beans causes me lots of gas.As does baked beans.Trial and error.
If you can,call your intestine doctor as soon as you can.There's a possibility that you might have a stricture of a part of your intestine.An upper GI and a colonoscopy will find out.I had a closed up part of both my small and large intestine back in '03,and ended up with my stoma.Don't want to scare you,but,it will be better to know whats going on,than to ignore the problem.
I hope that you won't have to go through what I did.So,Good Luck!Deano
Reply by Tasia, on Sat Jan 10, 2009 7:56 pm
Thank you, I was having the same problem, and I'm quckly learning which foods to avoid.
Just one question about the stool softener, does it make you have really runny stool? I hate that. Yogi Ginger Tea (digestive aid) was suggested to me by a friend I met at chemo,  I just had my first cup and it's not bad.
Reply by Whoa, on Mon Jan 12, 2009 12:53 pm
I'm not sure what kind of ostomy you have, so advice and reasons for constipation would be different depending on Ileostomy or Colostomy.

Ileostomy:  You should NEVER need a laxative to help you go, or stool softeners. They  can cause further diarrhea and electrolyte imbalance with an ileostomy. I have only had one pt. in my 18 yrs. with an ileostomy that had to be on stool softeners due to complex other medical issues affecting intestines.  If you are not having regular stools (5-9/day), there may be a food blockage, adhesions, ileus or stricture.  If you experience pain more than a couple hours, I recommend going into Urgent Care or emergency room to get an xray; many people need to be hydrated by IVs also.  If food blockage, best future management is prevention of high fiber/roughage foods, chewing well, adquate hydration.

colostomy: Dean speaks from experience and good advice.  Medically, for most there does not need to be a change in diet; there are exceptions to that and personal preferences to avoid  or decrease gas/firm stools/ foods to bulk up loose stools, etc.  If you have a colostomy and are severly constipated several days, I would also get checked by the MD/xray.  If you are on pain pills, they can cause severe constipation if not taking stool softeners or greatly altering your diet to soften your stool.

Hope your blockage has passed.  If not, I strongly advise seeking medical help.

* Certified Wound and Ostomy Care Nurse
* Registered Nurse
* Bachelor of Science in Nursing
Reply by live_love_laugh, on Fri Feb 06, 2009 11:00 am
Hello Leolynne, I have had my ostomy for 15 years now and have learned a lot about it just by trial and error. I have had only 4 blockages since my surgery and that is in part to a few tricks I have learned along the way. The doctors will tell you that you can still eat anything you used to eat before your surgery but this is not entirely true. You CAN do that if you wish to have blockages. Here's what I have found out.....First of all, the more you drink with your meals the better things will pass through you and not cause a blockage. Second, certain foods do not digest without your colon. Foods such as lettuce, cabbage, corn, popcorn, these foods do not digest well at all. Oranges are ok if the skins are not tough. Potato, apple, and tomato skins are ok if they are not tough or thick. You just have to be careful. Most importantly though is the amount of liquid you drink while eating. If you don't drink much then all you eat just sits in your intestine and compacts, causing the pain of a blockage.
Now, for the important info.....if you get a block in your intestine you can do one of two things. You can stop eating food and continue to down liquids, curl up on the bed or sofa and let it pass (which is what I prefer to do) or you can use a flush to help it. That's sort of like an enema for ostomates. I don't know the medical term for it sorry.
Hope you can get some use out of this.
Yours Truly, Wanda
Reply by annie_nu2, on Sat Feb 07, 2009 5:04 pm
It can get blocked???? They didn't tell me about that (and a lot of other stuff, too I bet). I just got my colostomy in October '08 and I am learning more from this site than from the professionals. They just turned me loose with some supplies and the phone number of the company who supplied it. I mean everyone has been extra nice, but I just don't know what to ask. Thanks for being here and being unafraid to share your experiences.
I don't know how this forum/chat stuff works either, but I am learning that, too. My computer experience is all email or solitaire. So if you reply and I don't answer I am not rude--just kinda dumb.
Reply by Whoa, on Mon Feb 09, 2009 12:54 am
Most colostomys don't get food blockages.  But....they can get constipated the same as if your rectum was intact for a variety of reasons.    

When I counsel folks, I will tell them medically speaking...with a colostomy there usually aren't any restrictions on foods unless a prior health issue (diabetic, low fat and cholestrol, etc if health issues prior to ostomy surgery).  However....whatever made you gassy before will do the same with an ostomy...with the inconvenience possibly of having to empty your pouch, passing gas at an inconvenient time / place, etc.    for those reasons, some people choose to restrict certain foods or fluids at certain times.  

Ileostomies...different and there are foods that are frequent culprits to cause food blockages.   I took a poll over a year with my ileostomates....everyone said popcorn and nuts and especially if eaten together was the worst.

* Certified Wound and Ostomy Care Nurse
* Registered Nurse
* Bachelor of Science in Nursing
Reply by annie_nu2, on Mon Feb 09, 2009 6:10 pm
Thank you for the information. I was kind of worried that it might get blocked and heal shut like any other wound. I know it sounds dumb, but I am learning. Thanks again. Annie
Reply by Ladyhawke, on Thu Sep 27, 2018 12:24 am

Which one do you use????

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