Colostomy Reversal and Dietary Concerns: Nuts and Seeds?

Aug 28, 2017 8:35 pm

I recently wrote to see if anyone had experience with colostomy reversal. Thank you to those that replied. It was both informative and scary. I didn't mention that I had bouts of diverticulitis for several years that were always treated with antibiotics, but in June '16, I ended up in the ER. And only after several tests did they find the burst and do emergency surgery. I woke up with the colostomy, the big scar, and a wound vac. I did have home care for the wound 3x a week, but not much on education of colostomy. I was given the Hollister snap-on 2-piece, and that's what I've stayed with, except I went to a smaller circumference of the plastic snap-on ring as it was digging into my stomach when I'm in a sitting position. I usually wear a huge ace bandage that I call a "wrap" to go around the bag to cover up the disk outline. It's hard sometimes if there's output because it's flattened out, but I have not had any leaks. The only reason I had any idea take down was any worse than the first surgery is because I had such fear and asked a lot of questions. I am still confused with the whole thing because what if I have the reversal and I get diverticulitis again? I asked if I had dietary restrictions like no nuts, seeds, etc., but was told I could eat anything with the colostomy. That was the surgeon PA, not a gastroenterologist. I don't eat a lot of nuts and no popcorn. It is hard to edit this thing so I can only write from this line. I have pretty much eaten everything, but does anyone know about diet and the nuts seeds thing with an ostomy? Much eaten everything.

Aug 28, 2017 11:10 pm

Hi Newstom -

My ostomy is a result of the same thing as yours - a blown intestine with leakage into the abdominal cavity - 2 surgeries and 16 days in the hospital. This was over 4 years ago. I avoid anything with seeds as they can get into those little pockets in the intestine and cause problems. I've eaten popcorn on occasion with no problem, and eat nuts on a regular basis. I've had no problem with diverticulitis since the surgery. I would think it could possibly recur but have had no recurrence. As to reversal surgery, I could have it done but have chosen not to. I was 70 when this happened. I decided to "save" anymore surgeries for "must haves". I can and have lived with the ostomy with no problems, doing whatever I want to. Personally, I have not regretted not having the reversal surgery. My doctor said it would be just as major as the ostomy and maybe more involved because of scar tissue. I don't know your age, and that could be a factor. Had I been 15-20 years younger, I might have had it done. It's a personal choice. All my family and friends know about my ostomy and it's no big deal. Wouldn't matter to me anyway - it's my body and was my decision. Best of luck to you!

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Aug 29, 2017 5:24 am

Hello Newstom.

Thanks for an interesting post.

Being vegetarian, nuts and seeds are an integral part of my daily diet and I have had no problems at all with them. I eat more or less what I like but I did not have diverticulitis prior to the stoma so I'm not sure how that would alter the situation. At first I had similar reservations about certain types of food becasue I did not want a blockage so I used to put it all in the blender to chop it into dust. It did not take long before it dawned on me that I could be doing the same thing with my teeth by chewing thoroughly before swallowing so the blender is no longer part of my routine. It was mainly for peace of mind rather than any physical benefit.

I made the same choice as Texasmade inasmuch as I decided not to go for reversal, simply because I adjusted to the stoma quickly and it is much more manageable than what was going on before.

Theses things ae always a matter of personal choice and I hope that whatever you decide, works out for you.

Best wishes


Fraidy Cat
Aug 30, 2017 5:45 am

Hi Newstom,

I don't remember if I responded to your first post or not, but scared as I was, I had colostomy reversal in April along with incisional hernia repair and stomach reconstruction. Luckily, I had a great surgical team and think that is the key for successful reversal. I've read numerous accounts of reversals where the site was left open to heal on its own and many seem to have complications with that. My surgeons closed all incisions and I have had no problems whatsoever. I have not regretted having the reversal, in fact, I'm so grateful that I was a candidate for it and that I had such great doctors.

Best of luck whichever you choose,

Fraidy Cat

Past Member
Oct 14, 2019 10:14 pm

I've recently had surgery on the 24th of September 2019 and was wondering if I should get the reversal done when I have the chance. I didn't know too much about it, and you seem to know more than me due to the fact that you decided not to have it done. I am a 35-year-old male and was wondering what your take on it would be and how long before the reversal can be done... Thank you for any info you provide.

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