Excessive vaginal discharge after ostomy surgery - seeking advice

Not really sure if I have this under the right section or not, but this seemed the best place to put it.
Okay. So here's the deal. Before surgery, I had slight vaginal discharge. It was an everyday thing, but nothing worth worrying about. I went to my OB/GYN about it, and he said everything looked fine. Took a swab, no diseases, I was good. I started my cycle two days after the removal of my colon, and it lasted seven days, I think. Which is two days longer than normal. Ever since the end of my period, I've had worse vaginal discharge than before. I went back to my OB/GYN yesterday. He took a look around, got a swab and everything, and looked at it under the microscope. He said there was nothing in the discharge that shouldn't be there, and that he had two other ostomate patients. They had the same kind of discharge issues.
My question is, does it ever go away.
For that matter, does anyone know what causes it?
Is it even a common thing?
My OB/GYN said it shouldn't affect sex at all, although I'm a bit worried because my boyfriend enjoys performing oral on me, and I don't want him getting ill from the discharge. Eh, guess I had more than one question. If anyone can shed some light on this, though, I would appreciate it.

Are you sure it's coming from the vagina? I ask only because the same thing was happening to me, especially after intercourse with my now ex-husband. Turns out it was an abscess above the rectal stump that was draining and somehow getting around the vaginal area.

Gray Logo for MeetAnOstoMate
Top 5 Collections

Yep. It's vaginal. I had a little discharge from my anus, as well, the first and second day I was out of surgery. But that's completely dry every time I go to the bathroom, now. Also, I'm wearing pantyliners, just to keep clean, and the only part that gets anything on it is the front.

Spiritual Living

Yes, it's normal. Even for a urostomate. And no, he won't get a disease or any infection if he performs oral on you. As a matter of fact, increased discharge can be a good thing with sex because there's plenty of natural lube for the both of you to enjoy. So relax, have fun and just clean up before oral so he won't have to deal with all the pre-discharge (if you know what I mean). If you're going to the conference in Jacksonville, FL, see you there!

My reply isn't quite as black and white as the others. I am a women's health adviser who has undergone colorectal surgery.

Firstly - it would be interesting to know your age.

Having a longer period than you are used to after your surgery was okay - just the womb lining had been battered about a bit by emotional and physical trauma of surgery.

There should be no change in your vaginal discharge - if you aren't taking contraceptive pills then your discharge should be clear and watery for a few days about 10 days after your last period while you ovulate - presumably they left both your ovaries behind? On the other days your discharge should be thick and cream/white color and not offensive smelling.
If you take an oral contraceptive pill or use the Implant then your discharge will be thick white/cream all month.

If your discharge is offensive smelling or itchy, yellow or greenish then that might indicate infection and you should go back to your doctor. That wouldn't be healthy for your partner.

If your discharge is yellow/brown and smells bad it could mean infection inside after surgery (an abscess) or could be a 'recto-vaginal' fistula, which is where there is a little track that forms from the bad area that was or is in your gut to your vagina. That definitely wouldn't be healthy for him either!"

Hope that helps a bit.
Staying Hydrated with an Ostomy with LeeAnne Hayden | Hollister

I had my surgery many years ago (50), and had no periods for the 3 years prior to that, when I was sick. But once my surgery was done, my periods resumed within a few months. No vaginal issues.

Four years later, I had the rectal stump and anus removed (I was 19) and still no issues. I married, and had my first child...with a vaginal delivery, and after that was when the problems began.

I had ongoing vaginal infections, of one kind or another, and after many attempts with different meds, I had some extensive tests done. This was before ultrasounds....so it involved x-rays of the vagina and uterus....

More lab tests confirmed that the vaginal infections were bacterial....and although they couldn't find it, they deduced that I had a "vaginal fissure/fistula". The infections came and went over the more than 24 years I was married and had an ongoing sexual relationship.

My ex never contracted anything, even though we had oral sex. My GYN Dr. at the time advised me to douche regularly, with just warm water (not to change any pH levels). That was contrary to popular opinion, and medical practice at the time...and even now. But it's what kept me clean and sane...

I'm divorced now, for more than 20 years, and have not had a regular sexual relationship much of the time. No intercourse....+ treatment with meds....the infections "cleared up".

This last year and a half, I was more sexually active...and the "infections are back".

Upsetting and disconcerting, but that's the complication and side effect I've had from the surgery. I'm back to douching daily....and that keeps the discharge at bay. I've been through 3 different bouts of antibiotics (it's not yeast), but it hasn't cleared up in nearly 9 months. I hope this explains some of the issues for you.

Best of luck


Wow! Very interesting and important posts as I have had some of the same issues and thought it was due to the change in my hormones! Very helpful!!!


I have had a vaginal discharge and itching ever since I had my colectomy two years ago. Every time I have it checked by my OBGYN, it turns out to be a bacterial infection. So she puts me on a course of vaginal antibiotics called Metronidazole. I have had a very hard time getting rid of it. Perhaps that is what you have. Ask your doctor to check for that.

Renee of Steamboat Springs, Colorado.

Violet-hummingbird, I am 20 years old, and I am an ileostomate of three weeks now. I can't take any form of internal contraception because of my heart condition. My discharge is still rather watery, although the color ranges from yellowish to yellow-pink, but there is no odor, and the doctor said he saw no bacteria when he took a look at the discharge he swabbed out of me. There is no itching, burning, or pain either. Both of my ovaries are intact, but the surgeon said he saw cysts on my ovaries. I wouldn't be surprised, as I also have a lot of large cysts on my kidneys.


Your letter was very interesting. But I'm wondering if you would be willing to share why you had your stump and anus removed? It has only been a year since I had my ostomy and I have what feels like something is stuck up inside my rear. My anus has been removed so what am I feeling? Makes it almost impossible to be penetrated during sex. Anyone else have this problem?



I have white discharge for 6 months after surgery and itching and soreness outside vagina. Anyone else had this and what to do? No smell except the odd time sour smell. BTW, had ileostomy and still have severe Crohn's in stoma.

* Please, do not post contact information, personal information or advertising.
All times are GMT - 5 Hours