Trying New Colostomy Bag: Concerns and Questions

Audrey Warren
Sep 23, 2023 2:21 am

My surgery to create a colostomy was two years this November 8. Until now, I have been using a Coloplast convex transparent bag because I like to rinse it and make sure all 💩 is gone. I just recently went from a one inch to a 1 1/8. I've lost 13 of 15 lbs gained at the beginning of the pandemic. For some reason, my stoma became a tad larger and my precut 25 was too tight. When I talked with Coloplast rep, he said they don't make pre-cut 28's so I ordered one box opaque. A second reason I like the transparent is I can see that I've got the stoma with an Eakin ring attached to the pouch placed correctly.
Will I be able to do this with an opaque pouch? I don't think I'll be able to get it as clean, but I can live with that.

Today when I changed the bag and was prepping for a new one, paper towels, adhesive remover, and barrier wipes were bloody--- not horrible, but more than usual.

Answers, suggestions welcome.


Sep 23, 2023 4:49 am


I have a colostomy, 9 months post-op. I use Hollister 2-piece system. My stoma has changed shape quite a bit, oblong and large. Also, I have a peristomal hernia and some prolapse. As a result, my stoma sticks out quite a bit. I've never had any leaks or trouble with wafer adhesion. I change bags 2 times a week and the wafer every Sunday. I use spray adhesive remover and remover wipes to carefully take off the wafer. I cut the wafer to have about 1/8 inch clearance all around my stoma.

With colostomy, you don't have to fit the wafer real close to the stoma. Output is usually thicker and not as irritating to the skin. When I used to cut the wafer for a real close fit, my stoma would sting most of the day.

A stoma will bleed easily when poked or irritated. If you're seeing blood when changing your wafer, your stoma is getting pinched or rubbed.

If this problem persists, see a stoma nurse. Also, all Ostomy supply companies have stoma nurses you can call for consultation.

Gray Logo for MeetAnOstoMate

Why Join MeetAnOstoMate?

First off, this is a pretty cool site with 33,991 members. Get inside and you will see.

It's not all about ostomy. Everything is being discussed.

Many come here for advice or to give advice 🗣, others have found good friends 🤗, and there are also those who have found love 💓. Most of all, people are honest and truly care.

Privacy is very important - the website has many features that are only visible to members.

Create an account and you will be amazed.

Sep 23, 2023 8:27 am

Hello Audrey.
If it is that your wafer is touching your stoma, then this will be causing the bleeding.  I had this recently when my stoma prolapsed and expanded so much that the wafer cut a nasty swathe half way round the stoma, causing it to bleed profusely. Of course, there is no predicting these sorts of incidents, so I felt the best course of action would be to accept what was going on and put preventative measures in place. 
I have now added SALTS HEALTHCARE Ltd DERMACOL stoma collars (to my list of equipment and this has done the trick for me. It is advised that they need to be ordered at the correct size for the stoma. However, I figured that if my stoma was going to suddenly, and without warning, expand dramatically, then wearing a collar that fitted snugly was going to end up 'strangling' the thing when it expanded.  Hence, I ordered a size bigger than needed and this has been just fine. What I have also tried is to 'pad' it round with some toilet tissue, which has been very effective in preventing the output from backing up towards the surrounding skin. This is made possible because of the DIY device that I have made to keep it all in place.
I do hope that you are able to resolve your own problems in the near future.

Best wishes


Sep 23, 2023 2:00 pm

Audrey, Coloplast makes a bag called the Sensura Mio that is opaque but has an inspection window, where you can lift up a piece of the fabric to ensure the opening is snug around your stoma. Maybe it comes in a pre-cut?

Sep 23, 2023 2:19 pm

Hi Audrey,

I use clear bags too. I like to rinse mine as well and keep it clean 😁. If the covered ones don't work for you, you can always just get a cute bag cover for your clear ones.

Getting Support in the Ostomy Community with LeeAnne Hayden | Hollister
Sep 23, 2023 2:36 pm

You have lots of experience behind you now of changing bags you can handle it!

Like all of us, you have your own way and routine of changing, change isn't always a bad thing.

I don't use Eakin, I use another ring. I don't attach it to my bag, I put it straight on my skin around my stoma.

Sometimes stomas bleed more than other times. Unless it's excessive amounts of blood, I wouldn't worry. Or you might just have been a bit more heavy-handed cleaning it than usual, but if you're concerned, seek medical advice.

Stomas can change shape and size at any time. The longer you've had one, the more chance of it getting bigger. It's recommended that we measure our stomas once a month... I should take my own advice. I often forget to measure mine, lol.

Sep 23, 2023 3:19 pm

Rinsing your bag out will clean it, not sure why you wanna/need to see it. 🤷‍♂️ I get being able to see applying your equipment but after a person gets used to it, it shouldn't be that difficult to get it placed correctly, especially with a barrier ring as it'll fill in if needed.

Audrey Warren
Sep 23, 2023 6:51 pm
Reply to eefyjig

It does come in the size I want. I just got some free supplies. Thank you.

Audrey Warren
Sep 23, 2023 6:54 pm
Reply to Ben38

Do you use Coloplast? I like their barrier strips. What kind of ring do you use?
Thank you.

Audrey Warren
Sep 23, 2023 6:57 pm
Reply to Beachboy

Thank you. I appreciate it.


Audrey Warren
Sep 23, 2023 7:03 pm
Reply to AlexT

I have a colostomy and IBS. Sometimes it takes me two hours to empty completely.

And I rinse after each empty to try and keep the filter from being clogged. I'm OCD about keeping it rinsed. Once I'm done, there is no activity until the next morning and coffee stimulates it.

Sep 24, 2023 8:10 am

Hello Audrey

Many bags have a "slit" for viewing. If you find you like a bag that is covered, you can always slit the cover to suit yourself.

Sep 24, 2023 1:58 pm
Reply to Audrey Warren

I rinse after each empty too. Unless you are super careful and you get no output near your filter, sloshing the water around in the bag to get everything loosened up to empty will clog your filter after a couple of times.

Sep 24, 2023 4:35 pm

I'm lazy.... bag lookin' "messy"....  I pop it off and put on a new one.  Of course I still have excellent company-provided medical insurance.  Once I'm on Medicare... my lazy ways will come to a close.

Audrey Warren
Sep 24, 2023 11:20 pm
Reply to Axl

A very practical approach and one I will try.

Thank you.

Sep 25, 2023 2:51 am

I don't know what to say about bags. I didn't like the opaque bags, I want to be able to see what is going on in there. My ostomy nurse told me a stoma is very vascular and sensitive and will bleed easily. Try to be gentle with it when you are cleaning it off. And make sure you aren't cutting your wafer too tight or with jagged edges. The clear bags will tell you if you aren't cutting your bag big enough because if your stoma is turning purple or dark red then you are strangling it.


Sep 25, 2023 9:32 am
Reply to AlexT

Clear bags... why not if that's what wants to be worn. Could say the same about wearing a bag sideways, wearing a bag with a peekaboo window, or wearing a certain brand. It's all a personal choice, and we all wear what we wear for us and our own reasons.

Sep 25, 2023 12:43 pm
Reply to Beth22

I could care less about what someone chooses to wear. I was just saying a person doesn't need a clear bag to see it's cleaned out after rinsing. For me, I really don't want to show others the output in the bag if I go outside with no shirt on or the bottom of my bag hangs below my shirt line.

Oct 10, 2023 12:11 am
Reply to Audrey Warren

Yup. Only ostomy here and a newbie.
My ostomy nurse recommended an opaque bag for me since I seemed to be a bit obsessed over watching things.
I use the Sensi Miro? Curved with a barrier ring. No stoma paste. Hate that stuff.
Normally morning coffee gets things moving. After that, not until the next morning.
I rinse the bag when I feel everything has made its way down. Always use a lubricant.
Usually rinse and reapply before bed.
So far, good but there are bad days. As in do not eat copious quantities of fried homegrown okra!

Oct 10, 2023 12:24 am

When my bag bottom peaks out from the end of my shirt .... my wife goes bonkers. She points at it and says "hey, hey, HEY!"

Don't tell her.. Sometimes I do it on purpose. Who said ostomies weren't fun.

Nov 09, 2023 8:46 am
Reply to AlexT

I think most people wear clear bags to keep an eye on the stoma. That's why I wear clear bags. I have had so many issues with my stomas... on number six. They each have all done weird, wonky things and retracted. I have swung to the left, swung to the right, this one has literally flipped all the way back, moves in a helicopter motion, turned pale-ass pink, turned purple, etc. lol. But for others not to see, that's what you get a bag cover for or wear a belt when going out. I don't want others to see the contents inside the bag either.

Nov 09, 2023 3:01 pm
Reply to Beth22

I understand when people have issues with their stoma or are new and need to measure or check their output. But to want to see it months or years after getting an ostomy, I do not understand. Bag covers are worthless unless custom-made for your exact setup, and not everyone wants to wear a belt or wrap.

Nov 10, 2023 2:48 am

I'm with Alex, not a fan of the clear version, but I do have an inspection slot in the beige finish should I get the urge to have a peek.

Nov 10, 2023 3:12 am
Reply to Axl

Yep, my bags have that too.

Nov 10, 2023 2:31 pm
Reply to AlexT

Mine do, too. It's the best of both worlds - your output is hidden, but you can make sure your bag opening is evenly around your stoma, and you can check your output if you need to.