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Irrigation verses pouches

Mon Oct 15, 2018 8:12 pm
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Good evening Puppy,

the stomo and other people on this site have always told me to irrigate every day of constancy for the regularity of the colon is important if you do not want to have a leak for 22-23 hours. You are lucky to irrigate at 2 days, I irrigate since April and I must really irrigate every day :(

These are the top 5 issues ostomates face:

1. Dating and relationships
2. Concealing the pouch
3. Foods to eat and avoid
4. Losing or gaining weight
5. Pouch ballooning

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Tue Oct 16, 2018 8:56 am

Hi Danielle, 

i started out doing it every day and know that some others do every other day so thought I would try it! I have only had two times that I have not had output In the two days but am hopeful that I can train my colon to this schedule verses the every day! 

My Ostomy Nurse did tell me one or two days! So taking the chance I can do the two days! Will see! Sure makes life easier! 


Fri Nov 02, 2018 1:23 pm

Yes, you can get stoma plugs in the US.  Liberator Medical has them--they're in Florida and have since been bought out by Bard, If you key Liberator Medical, it will probably redirect you to the new site.  They sent me a bunch of samples--but didn'l like any of them except the Unisolve adhesive remover. Lots of weird filter systems and convex bags, which I don't need.

Before you get a plug, check with your Ostomy nurse, and your surgeon.  When I was in rehab (not a good choice) one of my ignorant and untrained nurses said that 14 years ago when patient a needed to 'stem the tide' while changing an appliance, they would use an OB TAMPON (guys, that just a tampon without an applicator) sliding it half way in to stop any flow.

My Ostomy nurse had heard of this practice but will not allow her patients to do it.  My surgeon went ballistic.  He hates stoma plugs.  Why you ask?  Because it stops the natural flow and can cause a backup (uncomfortable) or a BLOCKAGE.  For those of you who've had a blockage I need say no more.  My surgeons practice is comprisesd of more blockages than he cares to handle-he said it's like removing a block of concrete from a human body.

Not nice for anyone. I haven't asked him about irrigation yet, but I know he would tell me to use a waterproof stoma cap to contain any natural fluids.  Your stoma is a one-way valve meant to keep your system clear. Don't back it up or block it.

Sat Nov 03, 2018 2:44 am

Hello dls. Thanks for your post which provides an interesting perspective from one surgeon. I can understand his logic regarding blockages . However, it does seem a rather dogmatic approach to hate stoma plugs. Like all stoma devices, there is a reason for their exisitence and not every device will suit every individual.  I have been using them for years without any problems at all, but then I irrigate, so there is very little output to get blocked. I have a parstomal hernia which closes tightly over the hole just behind the stoma and lets nothing at all out, including wind. My logic is that (in my case) the stoma plug helps to keep the hole open and 'trains' the stoma to be more flexible than it might otherwise be. It also lets out wind because it is porous, which avoids a great deal of pain. I too would not recommend tampons because they are not designed like a stoma plug and can get stuck inside with potentially disasterous results.

Looking back on many past posts, my impression is that taking advice from professionals is a bit like listening to advice from anyone else. We need to keep an open, objective, pragmatic, common-sensical  (sceptical) mind about all advice and try to find whatever suits us as individuals, rather than blindly following what other people recommend.

Your post raises in me the question as to whether this surgeon has actually had to manage a stoma of his own. If he did, he might not be quite so inflexible in his thinking.

Best wishes


Sat Nov 03, 2018 8:06 am

Good morning Bill, your article in response to DLS was very informative, that I was wondering which company sells its plugs because occasionally several hours after my irrigation at my job I have leaks, like diarrhea and I would like try its plugs ... but I do not want to spend a lot of money. Do you have photos please. Once again thank you for your sincere help for us :)

Sun Nov 04, 2018 4:33 am

Hello Shit Happens. 

I have tried to insert  a photograph of the Coloplast,Conseal plug on here but it won't let me, so I'll give it a go on my profile photos. The plugs are kept tightly wrapped in a dissolvable wrap to allow them to be inserted easily. This wrap dissolves and the plug expands inside the stoma.  I have been thinking about what you say you want the plugs for and my own impression is that they will not likely be very effective for diarrhoea. The reason I say this is because (unlike tampons)  they are not made from material which is very absorbant. It is more the consistency of a fine pond filter which lets the air and liquid through, rather than absorbing it. However, most of the time it will prevent soft and solid stuff from passing through - although sometimes small pieces do get pushed out along the side of the plug. Also, occasionally the whole plug gets pushed out and lodges in the flange,  but that's not very often and it's never posed me a problem.

I hope you can view the plug on my profile.

Best wishes


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