Dealing with Air in Night Bag

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I have the old problem of air filling up my night bag. Despite leaving urine in my urostomy bag and feeding this into the night bag, when I connect it, the night bag still collects significant amounts of air overnight. On one occasion, it was so full of air it was like a balloon and disconnected from the night bag on one side. A bit longer asleep and there could have been a nasty situation. Anyone have any other ideas on how to avoid this happening? I have some air in the night bag on most nights.


Past Member
Um. Am I reading this right...are you guys 'breaking wind' through your urostomy?

Can't say anything like that has happened to me, but I do often get an airlock effect in the pouch outlet or the night bag connector so that it doesn't drain from one to the other. It's more troublesome with some particular sorts of pouches and bags but far less so with others, but it is really aggravating if you're sleepy in bed and go to hook up and then have to get up and jump up and down or waggle things around for a few minutes to free the flow. I often wake up in the night to find it's jammed up again and my pouch is full, so I have to stand up and shake it all about again.

It's all good, eh?

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Also, I have a problem understanding how one gets air into a urostomy bag, but I have solved the problem of draining into the night bag. I use a strap with a loop attached, I think designed for use with catheters, locating the strap just above the knee, with the night bag tube through the loop, so that the urostomy bag is kept in its normal position regardless of how I turn at night.


I have experienced the same problem on many occasions and one time the pressure of the excess air in the bag stopped any more going into the bag and was filling my normal bag. I could not disconnect the bag as the pressure caused urine to come up the tube under pressure.

I have asked for an answer in the past but was unable to get a straight answer or a cure.


Been a urostomate using a night bag for 5 years, never had problems with inflation!!

Trying to work out how the heck you get air in a uro bag????

Staying Hydrated with an Ostomy with LeeAnne Hayden | Hollister
Past Member

I have kidney dysfunction and my urine is always quite foamy. Sometimes, as I say, I get a bubble stuck in the tube but not a bagful of air and I don't understand how you guys are getting so much!

The only time I have had excess air in my night bag is if I've cleaned it with something that creates froth and not made sure it's drained properly afterwards. Even so, it's just a little bit bulgy above the top of the liquid...


My night bag holds 2000 mL and I normally have about 1000 mL overnight, but most mornings the bag is puffed up with air and is nearly full with air and urine. I don't have any froth, and I only clean with vinegar and water every morning after flushing with clean water.

Past Member

And you don't get excess air in your urostomy bag during the day?


Interesting thought, no I have no problem with my normal bag and it may have something to do with the fact that the night bag has a one-way valve allowing entry into the bag but nothing back out the same way.

I don't know what happens to the air during the day but I have never had any problem in that respect. Just as a matter of interest, it has happened with both new and old washed night bags.


The mysterious "Air in night bag"

Almost from the beginning of using a night bag for my urostomy, I found the bag has ballooned with air in the morning (I was afraid the pressure of the air can break the bag and...).

I didn't find any reference to this occurrence in Google, except for two similar complaints in another forum.

I looked for all kinds of explanations (more or less fantastic J), until I realized that the small bag attached to the base of the stoma (Hollister, 2 parts) during the day, didn't suffer from the same phenomenon.

In other words, something in the night bag....

Since the beginning of my treatment, I have been rinsing the night bag in the morning with diluted vinegar (acetic acid), leaving a small amount in the bag when I reconnect again at night (I change the night bag once a week).

Normally in the urine, there is a salt called calcium carbonate (and the amount can be relatively excessive when the ostomate suffers from a specific kind of excessive acid in the blood, a known complication of the ileal conduit (usually very mild and asymptomatic). The excess of acid is buffered (lessened) in part by extracting calcium carbonate from the main deposit of this salt in the body, the bones (and finally eliminating it in the urine). By the way, the presence of excessive calcium carbonate in the urine is one of the reasons for the frequent production of stones in the urinary systems of urostomates.

And here comes the solution to the "mystery": the combination of acetic acid and calcium carbonate produces the gas CO2 (carbon dioxide), the same gas we exhale during respiration. For the chemistry-minded ostomates:

2CH3COOH + CaCO3 ----- Ca(CH3COO)2 + H2O + CO2

The night following my "discovery", I connected to a new bag: no "air" in the morning. The same after rinsing the bag with vinegar, but afterward rinsing it again with water.

I think this is the mechanism for the production of nocturnal gas.

I suppose there are variables playing here, on the production of more or less (or none) gas: the use of vinegar, of course. Then, how much vinegar we leave in the bag. And finally, how much calcium carbonate the urine contains.


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