Preparing for Hartmann's Reversal: Seeking Advice and Support

Dogen's bag

What a weird and, well weird is the right word, trip this is.

I have a Hartman's reversal scheduled for August 2nd and must say at first it was a relief to get the appointment.

When I had the emergency colostomy in December it was akin to waking to a horror show. After 6 months and great advice from this group I accepted my new life but suddenly bam- reversal! It does not seem real.

I am terrified but elated at the same time. I have about 1/2 of a colon left to attach to my large intestine so all should be good.

What I have is guilt that won't go away. Guilt knowing I am quite possibly just a visitor in a world that most will never leave. I vowed to my wife to never forget all of this and to be there for others which really leads me to my question- What can a former ostomate do to help the community?

I'm not there yet but being positive.


I'm happy for you and I'm one of those who will never leave the ostomy world! Try to reduce those feelings of guilt by focusing on gratitude. I find this really helps when I get anxious. Yes, I have a bag but I'm grateful that I don't have ostomy pain. I think our ostomy experiences change us, perhaps make us more empathetic, open and patient. Consider volunteering in your local hospital and help those who are going through similar experiences. Even when you're on the other side of this, you have a wisdom and special understanding that will last you for the rest of your life. That's a wonderful thing!

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Nothing to feel guilty about. We're all happy you're having a reversal.

Think of joining an ostomy support group like UOAA.

Saturday, October 7, 2023, is World Ostomy Day. There will be events worldwide to raise awareness. Look into events in your area. You could help out. You could be the one person that talks to someone that day having bowel problems that's in denial or through fear or just too embarrassed to see a doctor. That gives them a few encouraging words that gives them the confidence to go and get checked out. Their quality of life could be improved or even save their life from you giving a few hours of your time. It's not just them you're helping, it's their family and friends too.


I had the reversal nearly 2 years ago and I still check in regularly and offer advice on what I can. I don't comment much on when I had my colostomy unless I have something to add that might be useful. I give more advice on my journey with reversal and post-op complications I experienced. I still and will always be a part of this community!


Good for you, Dogen, and all the best. Patrick

Staying Hydrated with an Ostomy with LeeAnne Hayden | Hollister
Dogen's bag

Thank you all for your posts. Great advice here and also thank you for the felicitations. It does feel off but good. :-)

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