Extensive Hospital Checklist for Reversal Recovery

Hi, everyone. I've never posted here but I've been a reader who benefited tremendously from your help and guidance. I'm one month post-reversal and all is going well. I put together an extensive checklist of things I found useful, indispensable or comforting during my hospital stay. Here it is:

For sore butt:
- Soft toilet paper
- Flushable wipes
- Calmoseptine or similar product (use surgical glove to apply; it's hard to wash off hands)

For dry mouth:
- Oasis or Biotene mouthwash (It makes a world of difference before you're allowed ice chips)
- Blistex or Chapstick

- List of medications
- Insurance card and driver's license
- Living will, power of attorney/advance directive (or make sure someone knows where they are)
- Cell phone/iPod or iPad
- Chargers
- Extension cord
- Paper and pen
- Your own pillow (use a colored or patterned pillowcase so it doesn't get mixed with the hospital's)
- Something mindless to read like magazines
- 2 small baskets or containers to put all your stuff in. Helps to avoid stuff falling on the floor and to keep tray table easy to clear off when you finally get food
- Eyeglass case
- Eye mask
- Ear plugs (several pairs - they tend to get lost)
- Slippers
- Short robe
- Disinfectant wipes
- Hand gel
- Hairbrush/barrettes/ponytail holders
- Moisturizer
- Deodorant, shampoo, moisturizing soap or shower gel, toothpaste, toothbrush, other toiletries
- Lavender scented pillow spray (very relaxing - I like the one from Bath & Body Works)
- Air deodorizer for the bathroom
- Kleenex

Two unusual things I did:
- Brought a big bag of mini candy bars and a glass bowl for nurses, doctors, and staff. Put it by the door with a card saying "Please help yourself - in appreciation of all you do." They LOVED it.
- Since you'll have an IV, you can't wear regular nightgowns. I bought some super cheap sleeveless ones at a discount store, cut the shoulder seam, and put Velcro on each end. You just step into it and pull it up. It made me feel so good not to wear those awful hospital gowns.


Great list, Samsmom, and very helpful. I would put earplugs at the top of my list because I have found the night staff, particularly at the nursing station, can be merciless with their laughing and chatter. Second, if at all possible, try to get a room as far away from the nursing station as possible. Third, be sure to bring all your meds in their original bottles since some hospital staff like to substitute their judgment for your own physicians. You should discuss your meds with your surgeon prior to admission so there is no misunderstanding. Fourth, bring a warm bathrobe as winter is approaching. Finally, if friends or family want to visit and bring something, ask them to bring decent food. What hospitals serve would never pass inspection at a kennel. Otherwise, happy reversals! PB

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My reversal isn't until next May (can't wait!!!!!). I'm just curious how long your stay was. I had a rectal cancerous tumor removed this past October and it was pretty much the worst 7 days of my life. My surgeon assured me the reversal surgery should be a lot easier. I was hoping maybe like 4 days. I'm all connected inside, I just need my stoma closed up (don't know the technical terms).


I had my reversal in June. I, too, was all together on the inside. I was originally told 4-14 days in the hospital. I was out in 24 hours!!! This is not to say that I didn't have some pain, but I was thrilled to be home sweet home so soon. Good luck!!


The reversal surgery is much easier, for sure. They won't let you out until you pass stool. My surgeon came in one morning and said, "Anything moving down the pike yet?" Humor does help, and since you know it's a positive surgery, you have a better frame of mind. Best of luck to you!

How to Manage Ostomy Leaks with LeeAnne Hayden | Hollister

Thanks for the info! My reversal is scheduled in December, very nervous about it! The doctor thinks he can do it laparoscopically, but a good portion of my colon was removed initially 3 years ago, so it will be a little more difficult to reconnect, but he thinks it can be done. He told me he is using titanium staples to reconnect, is that what they used for you?


Mine was laparoscopic, which shortens the healing time. The stoma site healed from the inside out, which took a few weeks, but was not bothersome to me. I'm not sure if he used titanium staples, but I have had them before in previous surgery. The 1 1/2 inch incision from the lap was actually glued closed on the skin and required no attention at all. It is incredible what they can accomplish these days. We are fortunate to live in the 21st century!

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Hello fellow ostomate. You being from York, means you are familiar with the shopping areas near the former Cat Plant. I used to reside in Lancaster, and am a frequent visitor of the Friendly's on 30. It feels odd now whenever I come to visit, because I am a tourist now, but I know where everything is... lol I am scheduled for a reversal in about 6 months from now. I know it is an easier process, but if it goes wrong, it could become fatal. I am considering leaving things the way they are right now. This bag isn't a big issue for me. It kinda grows on you.

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