Relocating ostomy an inch down - experiences and advice?

Sep 09, 2018 5:59 am

Hi. I'm new to the site. I've had my ileostomy for about 12 years now and this is the first time I've ever reached out to a support site or anything. I'm kinda nervous. I don't know why. But I have a question. Has anyone ever had their stoma moved like an inch??? I've been very fortunate not to have any problems except for obstructions after the birth of my son. But that was corrected thankfully. But when I first got it, it wasn't supposed to be permanent and they never measured or talked about location. So it's right at my pant line. And my pants always rub against it and cover it. Therefore, I leak because it has nowhere to go. I REALLY want to move it like an inch down. I just want it below my pant buckle, not in line with it. But I am scared of how hard recovery that would be. Anyone here had it moved slightly just for comfort????

Sep 09, 2018 4:57 pm

There may be someone, but I would just look into some different pants. I wear pants with suspenders. I cannot use a belt anymore. There are lots of different styles out there.

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Sep 09, 2018 7:13 pm

That is unfortunate! I would be inclined to talk to the surgeon and tell them what the problem is. If nothing else, it might make them think twice about where they put the stoma on someone else. My own view is that if there is another solution, then you try that rather than surgery. I tend to wear boiler suits which are a 'onesie' by any other name. There are loads of alternative pants with waistlines up or down. The modern generation seem to prefer to wear their trousers nearerĀ  to their knees, with their arses showing so they wouldn't have this problem.

Best wishes


Sep 10, 2018 12:58 am

I know it's not so simple for women to simply get different pants... especially if we want to feel attractive or work in a professional setting. I actually believe your question is very appropriate. You didn't have the luxury of planning for your ostomy. I did, for which I'm eternally grateful. An ostomy nurse worked with me to find the perfect location... for bending, sitting, clothes etc. and marked my tummy accordingly. Sometimes the surgeons can't follow it exactly but most are very sensitive to the matter. I have an ileostomy and my stoma is about 1-2" below my bellybutton and to the right. I seldom have leaks and I can even forget that I have it. I will say that it's even more perfect since having my stoma revision and the colon removed mainly because the stoma sits up about 5/8" (same spot) and is a perfect little rosebud :) Previously, the active portion of the stoma sat a bit below and the inactive portion would push over it. Consequently, the skin around the stoma never healed. After this surgery the skin around the stoma healed well within a couple months... I'm delighted.

I figure if we have to live with this for the rest of our lives, we certainly have the right to be as comfortable as possible... or at least ask!

Keep us posted. I sincerely wish you well, you deserve to be a happy Momma!

Sep 10, 2018 2:04 am

I got one of my two ostomies when I was 7. Now at almost 48, my body distribution has changed. My colostomy is in a perfect location (got that one 3 years ago), but my urostomy is too high. I've sometimes thought it'd be great to get it moved just a little. You've given me the courage to ask my doc. Thanks!

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Sep 10, 2018 4:10 am

I have an ileostomy and am not comfortable wearing pants with belts. I buy really nice jeans and pants that have wide elastic waistbands. They look nice and are very comfortable. Honestly, I wouldn't consider getting my stoma moved. Take care.

Sep 11, 2018 5:05 am

Wow, thank you all so very much! Even with all the different opinions, it was amazing to hear I'm not alone. I knew I never was, but just to hear others' opinions because of real experience was just refreshing and just opens my eyes more. Buying new pants is definitely the easy way. But my stubborn side of me thinks if this is forever, I want it in a good spot. Well, in the meantime, I will change up my pant style but still go forward to ask about relocating my stoma. What's the worst they can say, no? I can handle that, no biggie. I wouldn't go with any expectations. Because like you said, I want to be a happy momma. So why not just ask? You all have been a great help. Thanks!!

Sep 12, 2018 10:34 am

I had my stoma relocated about an inch lower due to the same problem, it was right at the belt line.....a real problem....was relocated about an inch lower. The only issue I had was a ventral hernia about 7 years later that has since been repaired. If you can tolerate the surgery, go for is more enjoyable when you're comfortable.

Sep 16, 2018 1:54 am

Hi Cass,

Welcome to the site. I agree with "why not ask," especially if you're okay if they don't want to move it.