Disposing of ostomy bag at friend's house

Apr 10, 2011 4:05 am

I have an ileostomy and I like to use closed-end pouches and change them twice a day. I can carry an Ostaway Bag (black, thick, zip-lock) with me and keep a fresh closed-end ostomy bag with me in my pocket. Often when I am at someone's house, I need to dispose of one bag and put on a fresh one. I really prefer using the closed-ended pouches and I know there isn't any smell if they are put inside the black, thick, Ostaway Zip-Lock Bag. My question is: do you think it is okay to throw this in someone's bathroom wastebasket? I know I could also face the problem of being at someone's house, needing to change bags and finding they don't have a wastebasket in their bathroom! I know I could use a drainable pouch, but since I don't have that much output, I would much rather just "pop-off" one bag and put on a fresh one. Does anyone dispose of their bags/pouches in the way I am proposing? I am so new to this and it really stresses me out. Please give me your ideas!


Apr 10, 2011 8:38 pm
Hi Tello,

If they're good friends, they'll understand that you have to change it and you will be able to dispose of the bag easily in the bin.

But why stress yourself out? Just use drainable ones and you can just go to the toilet and flush it away. I think I'm right in saying that most people use drainable ones as they need to empty more often than twice a day.

Hope this helps.


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Apr 11, 2011 4:29 am

I just take my doggy bag with my pouch out to the garbage can or bin at a friend's house. I usually get stuff out of my car or take short trips to pick things up and it is easy to throw it in the bin. If I am in a public washroom, I put it in the sanitary napkin receptacle. Most of my close friends know I have an ostomy, but it is pretty easy to dispose of it discreetly, I find. One of my friends lives in a high rise and the garbage bin has restricted hours for use, so I try to time changes around that. If that is not possible, I put the doggy bag inside a grocery bag and tie it tight and dispose of it in the morning. I have stayed in high-end hotels and traveled on cruise ships without much hassle. I do take an incontinence pad with me to put on the sheets in case of a leak at night.

Apr 11, 2011 4:17 pm

I put mine in a doggy bag, and put it in the main household rubbish bin. All my friends know I have a stoma, so they understand. I carry a small make-up bag with me with all I need in it. Also, I was given a free key to use disabled loos when I'm out.
If I do have to change at someone's house, I warn them first as it can be a bit smelly.

Apr 11, 2011 6:54 pm

I have to empty way too often to use a closed-end pouch, but I travel a lot, stay at hotels, and friends' homes (who do not know I have an ostomy) and have never had a problem with disposal of my pouch. If I'm in someone's home and have to change, I rinse out the soiled bag and put it in a trash bag to dispose of it in the main trash bin (outside). I don't like to leave it in their bathroom... always fear a pet dog can go rummaging. In a hotel, I just wrap it well and leave it in the trash. I don't spend money on "poopy bags" and have never (in 40 years) had to change in a public restroom. But yes... at 16, I did change in a camp stall toilet, at midnight, with only a flashlight with wasps flying around. That's when I was too young and fearful to ask to use a "real" bathroom.
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Apr 11, 2011 7:36 pm

What great responses to what must be an age-old question! I agree that I would not leave it in the bathroom, because who knows, your friend could go rummaging through the waste basket and (inadvertently) open the EZ Ostomy bag - then yuuuuuck! I too vote for using the outside garbage if available, if not, then a grocery bag and into the trash that will be emptied soonest (but probably NOT a trash compactor!) and the sanitary napkin receptacle in public bathrooms.

Before I irrigated my colostomy, I used the Colo-Majic liners which can be flushed, except NOT into a septic system. But in public restrooms, they were great. That was back when I had Cigna and they didn't allow nearly enough pouches to get a person through the month! ;

Apr 11, 2011 10:43 pm

God! How lucky am I! I have had my colostomy for almost 11 years! I use a two-piece appliance and the disposal bags are scented. I am a part-time entertainer and never have any problem with disposal! You know why? - When people ask me, do I not wish I was 'normal again,' I say, 'This is normal for me!' 'What's normal for you?'

Apr 11, 2011 11:48 pm

I use the drains one as empty often. My friends know what I have, so there is no embarrassing thing going on. I am going on a 5-hour trip in a bus next week. I spoke to the bus company if I need to stop, they said no issue.

Apr 12, 2011 12:39 pm

I've never tried them, but these seem to be working well. http://colomajic.com/ That would probably solve your problem easily!

Apr 12, 2011 7:03 pm

I use drainables and when it's time to change the flange and bag, I empty water in it to take out the biggest part and wrap it in a foil paper and leave it in the bathroom garbage bin.

Aug 08, 2012 9:33 pm

I figure it's not as smelly or messy as having baby diapers around. I always have zip lock bags with me and, like others here, deposit them in the garbage - just as my daughter-in-law does with my grandson's diaper...smile

Oct 07, 2013 3:50 pm

I've had to change at a friend's house before. I carry Ziploc bags with my supplies, so I rinsed out my bag, put it in a Ziploc, then tied it in an old grocery bag before I put it in the main trash bin.

Overkill probably, but I didn't want to leave her any surprises.

Feb 28, 2014 1:00 am

I'm really surprised at all of the comments about using Ziplock bags and other types of plastic bags. My experience is that they still smell and they often leak. Try the pouch seals by Ostosolutions. They seal the smelly contents inside the pouch. There is no odor and you don't have to worry about the pouch leaking into the bag, which then smells. These seals really work much better than plastic bags and they are easier and neater to use.

Dec 08, 2015 5:00 pm

When I need to change my bag at a friend's house, I always dispose of it in their outside bin, the same as I do at home.