Seeking advice for parastomal hernia pain and pancaking issues

Dec 03, 2013 1:56 pm

Hi, I have had a stoma for six years now following colorectal cancer. I developed a parastomal hernia about a year ago. I recently stupidly moved a washing machine, and now I have slight pain if a stool is touching the stoma or when it moves just before it passes through the stoma. Also, I wear Corsinell support boxers which unfortunately tend to promote pancaking. Can anyone help, please?

Dec 04, 2013 1:16 pm
Hello, sorry you have had no replies to this very common problem. I'll give it a shot.
The hernia rate for ostomates is quite high, I've heard as high as 70% will develop a hernia. Unfortunately, the failure rate for repaired hernias is around 40-50%. The good news is not all require repair. If you are having pain, I would suggest you see a doctor and get his opinion. I am currently recovering from a hernia repair surgery, mine (and most will) required the stoma be relocated. The results... I now have the old stoma site, the new stoma site, my incision (they went through the old one), and my navel (all hernia development areas) "clustered" in an area so small you can cover them all with an open palm. My chance for recurrence is very high if I don't change my lifestyle. Talk to your doctor, I suggest you try irrigation if you qualify to eliminate the pancaking and allow you to wear some type of "binder" garment and possibly you can avoid the surgery and increased risk (you can't strengthen the abdominal wall by cutting it) of developing another one. Let me know what your doctor suggests. Good luck.
Gray Logo for MeetAnOstoMate

Why Join MeetAnOstoMate?

First off, this is a pretty cool site with 34,000 members who truly understand you.

It's not all about ostomy. We talk about everything.

Many come here for advice or to give advice, others have found good friends, and some have even found love. Most importantly, people here are honest and genuinely care.

🛑 Privacy is very important - we have many features that are only visible to members, ensuring a safe and secure environment for you to share and connect.

Create an account and you will be amazed by the warmth of this community.

Dec 04, 2013 5:19 pm
Hi, I developed a stomal hernia about nine months ago. It has been troubling because it caused an ulcer that grew about the size of a quarter on my parastomal skin in June. It healed on its own. Then in early Sept. another one formed right next to the site of the first one. Soon I had another one. I still have both and I'm having a hard time of it.
So I did a little web research and found a site from Sydney, Australia that is very informative. According to them, changing the stomal site is the last resort operation. Fixing with mesh is the best way to do a hernia repair. The site information is very thorough. It's Check it out.
Dec 05, 2013 12:12 pm
Hi, just wanted to say please, please don't leave it until it becomes a full-blown emergency. You may get septicemia or worse, your remaining bowel may get strangled and lose its blood supply. In that case, the bowel can die.
It is not wasting your doctor's time. They would sooner see it earlier as they have more options in treatment and ongoing management. Plus, it will eventually cost you a fortune (plus embarrassment) when your bag won't stay on and you have to continually clean up not just yourself but have to carry a whole change of clothes with you and a packet of "bath bags" (pre-moistened soapy washcloths used in hospitals for bed baths) and then constantly trying to smell yourself because you feel dirty.
So please humor me and go to the doctor. I only want to hear you say, "I went and this is what transpired." I will sleep easier then. God bless you and help you make the right decision for you going forward. Kind regards, LC.

I had cancer more than once, had an ileostomy in July, was in ICU for quite a while, and then just as I was allowed to get back to "normal," I developed an impressive hernia just standing up! So after only 5 months, I have had surgery in Brisbane again, and the doctor used the mesh technique previously spoken about. It does, however, have a tendency to recur, so my stoma care nurse has applied for a belt for me. I had the surgery last Tuesday but only saw the doctor the day before. I am sore and sorry, but at least I am still here. The very best of luck to you.
Dec 05, 2013 12:28 pm
61 Smiles, you are absolutely correct. I live in Australia. They firstly try support belts if it is a small hernia. Then, if it is larger or getting larger or has any bowel loops affected, then they use "on lay" 8mm thick bio mesh. It is called on lay because it is stitched to the outer muscle affected.
The mesh dissolves after 3-4 months, but it often allows the muscles to heal itself. There is, however, a high recurrence rate. Secondly, they will then try permanent underlay mesh, which is a bigger operation, has a few more risks, but often works very well. If it occurs a third time, they only have the option to move the stoma, used as a last resort because it carries subsequent risk of developing hernias around that stoma and so the cycle begins again.
It is important to always wear a stoma belt or undies. I have not found a comfortable or decent pair of undies yet, but I am getting a Kool Knit adjustable stoma belt which wicks moisture away from the skin as I live in a subtropical area. I found your reply excellent and just wanted to expand on it. Good luck and God bless. LC.
Staying Hydrated with an Ostomy with LeeAnne Hayden | Hollister
Dec 07, 2013 8:19 am

Hi, I answered previously on your topic but not on the Corsinel men's boxers. My advice would be to never wear them again because it is difficult for the output to move down. I would, however, recommend a Kool Knit para stomal hernia flexible and adjustable belt. Very best wishes. Lorraine

Feb 04, 2014 6:04 pm
Hi. I've had my colostomy for over 20 years (cancer). In 2007, my surgeon and I were discussing my hernia symptoms and considering moving the site of my stoma to the other side (ileostomy). We both agreed that it would be better to save what colon remains from the original surgery. So, he did a stomal revision. Unfortunately, the hernia returned so he referred me to someone that specializes in laparoscopic surgery.

He warned me that the first surgery might not be successful but there's so little involved that we decided to risk it. He was right and in fact it took two more surgeries before complete success! In on Friday am and out Saturday before noon! There are no external stitches and he uses a mesh (the trick, I think is, how to secure the mesh around the bit of colon exiting the stomach wall).

I've referred him to a friend who was very disappointed in his trip to the Shouldice Clinic and he was ecstatic with the results. I am about 6 years since my surgery with absolutely NO hernia symptoms!

His name is Dr. John Hagen with Minimally Invasive Group in Toronto. Review their site:
Apr 06, 2017 5:05 pm

Hi Paton, your post is a few years old, but I am hoping to get more info from others as well and restart this important topic. I had my surgery in Hamilton in 2010. My bulge is complicating how well my flange stays attached to my skin, plus it exaggerates my belly. Is your stomach still flat? There have been many advances since your repair, so I am hoping that chances are better nowadays. I would prefer to have the repair done at the existing opening, but not laparoscopic. I think open incision gives the surgeon more room to correctly stitch and insert the mesh properly. All the arguments for and against have been heard, and also "best leave it alone," but I want to go ahead and get my stomach gut fixed. I am 75 and too young to look old. Thanks to anyone for comments.