Hernia Prevention Exercises for Stoma Patients - Important Information!


I'm over 2 years down the line from my stoma, and still hate "Colin" with a vengeance, still smelly, painful, and a nuisance, but a few months ago after getting a bad cold, I sneezed and had terrible pain, but that's sort of normal for me, as I'm a paraplegic. However, since then "Harold" appeared, and now sticks out about 5 inches on top of my horrible fat tummy. When I eventually showed my GP, she told me to see my wonderful stoma nurses at Glan Clwyd Hospital, and they confirmed my suspicions of having a hernia, which has now got a big sore on it as the skin's stretched, but what surprised me was that this could have been AVOIDED, had I been informed. I'd have done the exercises (not that I could do all of them being paralyzed from the waist down), but at least could have tried and would have done the sit-ups even though I'm in pain with various things 24/7. PREVENTION is much better than cure. I've now been measured for a girdle as a belt wasn't suitable as I don't stand or walk. However, as I have a suprapubic catheter, I have an awful feeling that the girdle will press on Thomas John the catheter/bladder. ...... so the only option will be an operation. As I'm morbidly obese, this isn't a real option, as I was shouted at by the consultant last time and humiliated in front of staff and patients alike! So much so that I nearly committed suicide whilst on the ward. Another thing to add to the other things that being a paraplegic entails, but hey, still smiling, just. So to all of you that ARE NEW and getting used to your stoma, ask your specialist stoma nurse for the list of exercises that can prevent a hernia occurring...... good luck, things do get better, but the more information you're given the easier things get, cofion/regards Meira xxx


I have had my stoma for nearly 4 years and never heard of exercises to help avoid hernias. I have since had two bad hernias and had surgery to repair them. I have since had revision surgeries to fix the mesh getting twisted around the colon and causing problems going poo.

I would be interested in knowing what exercises they told you to do. My doctor or ET nurses have never suggested anything to me. All they said is it is fairly common to get hernias.

I am so sorry they yelled at you and made you feel suicidal. That is a horrible thing for anyone to be subjected to.

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Hi there Caw, I wasn't told either, until after the problem and as I've learned over the last few years with most things prevention is better than cure.

Basically it's sit-ups and other stomach muscle toning exercises, especially walking. The problem with me being a paraplegic and fat, then I can't do any of them especially due to the constant pain I'm in, but had I have been told then I would have given it a go.

There was a good article in last month's Salts MediCare Magazine about it. I actually tore it out and posted it to my stoma nurse as it showed the exercises and went through everything. I hope they will copy it and use it in their care information pack for future patients.

Hope you're feeling better, thanks for the reply, Cofion/regards Meira x


Meira. They shouted at you?? Seriously? What for? They are supposed to be professionals there to help!!! How old are you if you don't mind me asking? How long have you been paraplegic? Sorry being nosy, but just interested in your post.

Just riles me that so much information is lost between pros and patients. I could make a list of things that I found out; got told afterwards that would have been v. handy to know at the present time, not blummin afterwards!!

I'm guessing you're from Wales maybe? Look, the NHS is a fantastic service, but it falls down in so many local areas/ground level. I know it's due to understaffing, long hours, more for less so to speak... I truly appreciate what these people do for us, but communication needs to be addressed in a lot of areas of the NHS!! If you'd known about the exercises, like you say, you could have at least had a try at them...knowledge is power. It must be frustrating for you. I really hope the girdle doesn't press on Thomas John...fingers crossed for you and keep us posted please.

Love the fact you have names for stoma/catheter. Any consolation, I hate my stoma with a passion and it hates me too...good...could never see myself being friends with it anyway, we will both fight the fight and the flak that comes our way and smile at the end of the day....sometimes, ha! Good luck.


Hi there Caledonia, thanks for the lovely reply. Yep, the Surgeon was awful, can't fault the nurses though, they were amazing.

Sorry to hear you're struggling, but we just have to look at the positive over the negatives, smile and carry on!

I'm from North Wales, what about you? Couldn't find your profile on here.

It really does help to have names for mine, especially when they're painful, smelly, or a nuisance, which is most of the time lol

Take care, hope things get better soon
Meira x

Staying Hydrated with an Ostomy with LeeAnne Hayden | Hollister

I'm from York mate.

Yep, know what you mean about the smelly bit, makes me feel dirty at times.

Pleased the nurses were kind to you. Think you have it a lot worse than I have, so respect to you for keeping positive, though I know it's hard.

I won't name mine, too much disdain for it after only 5 months I guess.

You take care mate.


Hi, glad to know I'm not the only "namer". My stoma is named Dewey, not just for the obvious reasons, but after a co-worker from a previous job. Dewey was, more often than not, irritating and full of s---. I'm 2 years out from anal cancer and now have a colostomy, and my ass is sewn up. I have a huge scar traversing my body. I had been warned of hernias at my ostomy support group, and my point of reference put that info in the "general" file. I didn't know they were talking about perineal hernia. I never heard of it before. I lasted almost a year before getting one while chopping wood. It doesn't physically hurt, but I am afraid of making it worse. I have a 4-inch hernia belt, but it just seems to suck Dewey out through the belt hole. Any advice? I am hoping to resume waterskiing next summer.