Best Pre-Surgery Diet for Stoma Reversal?


I want to make my stoma reversal go as well as possible. I'm very healthy. The doctor just performed a colonoscopy. Green light for surgery. I was thinking about a five-day 'fast' before surgery. I fast from time to time to detox, etc. Does anybody know anything about this topic? I would think that a clean, empty colon would be the best possible environment for my doctor to work his magic. Or, am I overthinking this.



Hey guy,

I have never fasted for 5 days and find being NPO for labs or any procedure hell so cannot imagine 5 days! I would assume that normal cleansing procedure the day prior to your surgery would suffice! Good luck on your reversal! Keep us posted! Most of us are lifers but enjoy hearing of the successful reversals!

You will do great!


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I agree with puppyluv. You won't be having food the day before your surgery, and you will have eight glasses of that special clean-you-out drink. You could always ask your doctor about ways to be in the best shape for surgery.

Best of luck to you.

Sincerely, Asiam.


Thanks Puppy Asiam... I had a perforated bowel back in 2016. Initially, I was told that reversal was most likely my option, I was cut low. Although I was recently divorced at that time and opening myself up to my 'new' self, which meant finding a new partner, I didn't see a pressing need for reversal. I was really cool with it. I have experienced firsthand, as no doubt many of you have, how cruel and harmful 'people' can be. I would date from time to time, and around the 3rd date, I would 'tell all'... yep, that was the last date! No worries, thanks for showing me who you are, your loss.. yada yada. I am currently seeing someone and hey, she said yes to a 4th date! She's the one. I look at my whole process as a blessing. I've grown so much spiritually since my incident. I was already a Wayne Dyer fan prior to my explosion. I suppose the universe wanted to enhance and expedite my growth. I accept that in the most gracious way. I will always have room in my meditations for our species as a whole, we have so far to go. I pray that we find understanding and true compassion for all, not just spoken words and verbal fill. Since my stoma, there were 5 women that weren't meant to be in my life. My condition provided that filter. I found her!! All things happen for a reason! The source works in very mysterious ways. Never forget.... We Are All Entangled. I'll be in touch... peace all



You are fortunate to have a culling out method! I am married but imagine that it would be difficult to tell someone! People can be so shallow sometimes! I guess you don't know who they are until you present them with "the deal breaker". Glad you found the one!


Living with Your Ostomy | Hollister

Hi guywithabag - I would check with the doc before fasting. I had my reversal done two weeks ago after having an ileo for six months for toxic megacolon of undetermined origin. I'm 67 and in otherwise good health. So now it's recovery time; fatigue, toilet time, but all is well overall. Doc told me to not force anything. I'm eating small portions and walking in small increments. Best advice: do what the doc tells you. Good luck!


I'm with Bagface on this one. Check with your surgeon first, as mine was concerned with making sure my "vitamin levels" (for want of a better term -- basically that I kept up enough building blocks to heal) were appropriate. I have never been one for fasting, but do keep in mind that post-op you will have a period of liquid diet and you'll want enough strength to go walking as soon as you can.


I feel your concern because I had a colostomy bag operation last August 2018. I had a colonoscopy last November and my surgeon ordered a barium enema which I had done last week. In early March, I have an appointment with my doctor to find out the test results and whether I have enough colon left for reversal surgery. I'm scared because I've read that end colostomy bag surgery reversal is complicated and there are a lot of risks involved. I have a very good surgeon, yet so many things can go wrong. I guess I just have to have faith in him. The rest of my life is on the line! I hate this bag, but is reversal surgery going to be worse? I don't know how people voluntarily fast! I hate fasting and only do it when I'm required to for tests, etc. Maybe because I didn't eat for 10 days in the hospital last August. I'm only 90 lbs and have always been small but not this small. I had to gain eight pounds before my doctor would even consider the reversal surgery. Why is voluntary fasting so important? I just eat several very small meals a day. Not implementing fiber into my diet in the first place is what put me in this situation in the first place. When this is all over, a healthy diet with fiber will be my life, not fasting. Good luck to you when the time comes for your surgery.


Raidergirl - I had my reversal 2 weeks ago. I was on the bag for 6 months and glad to be rid of it. I have no colon now and my surgeon said that my new normal would be 5 BMs per day. Right now I go 10 times per day. My surgeon gave me a script for Loperamide which is supposed to slow things down. I feel good overall but am tired from the surgery and all the bathroom trips! I was nervous before the reversal, too, but I consider my surgeon my guardian angel. So, I need to be patient and let nature take its course. But no, I have no regrets about having the reversal done. Good luck!


Bagface, thank you for your words and I know this is not going to be easy when I do get my reversal! I just have to toughen up because my days with this bag will soon end. It's been six months and I'm ready to say goodbye to it.


When I had my reversal back in 2004, my surgeon wanted me to be "as clean as a whistle," so I was put on a rigorous cleansing two days prior to surgery. Everything went well, and I adjusted to the J-Pouch nicely without any infections or problems. As I remember it, I was back on the golf course 10 days after surgery and playing well. Better safe than sorry. Good luck!


I had a reversal a year and a half ago. What my surgeon did was have me do a Miralax mixed with Gatorade cleanse (nothing red colored) the night before. I didn't eat for a day prior. The morning you go in for the surgery, they have you drink this awful protein mix, and then right before surgery, they give you something to wake up your digestive system. Also, the night before, you have to give yourself an enema (I know, but again the point is to start things moving again...). I had my colostomy reversal on Dec 20, 2017, and was home on the 21st. Basically, all you do the night before is empty your bag, so be prepared.


Now that I have no colon, I have to figure out how I can get away for a few hours without having to frantically search for a bathroom. I had an ileostomy reversal 5 weeks ago and am "going" 5 times a day. Anyone?


Hi all,

Well, I had my reversal on March 21. All went well. I was released from the hospital on March 26. I'm feeling quite well all things considered. Regarding my question of 'fasting' prior to my takedown? Here's the timeline. On Monday the 18th, I stopped eating, just smart water for the electrolytes. Did the normal flushing procedures the day/night before. Not too much action, couldn't have been too much floating around, (sorry couldn't resist) lol. Anyway, needless to say, when they get you on a table in pre-op and the anesthesiologist team surrounds you accompanied by a triage nurse or two, I will say my emotions surged. I was totally pumped for this takedown, I went 3 years with a stoma. Once I was wheeled into that chilly O.R., I couldn't wait until the anesthesia was placed over my face. I actually had the team laughing... I said, c'mon already, gas me! I wake up a couple hours later, I take a very precarious glance down towards my abdomen hoping it was just bandages and no bumps (stomas)... wheew, all clear, just a big square grid of surgical gauze with a little blood here and there!! I was stapled up like a UPS package. Didn't and still don't care. It was a success! I will say this to all you future reversal prospects... GO FOR IT! As expected, my sentiments are.... I should've done this a long, long time ago. Once I left the hospital, I was painkiller-free, they messed up my script order and I just said forget it. I'm fairly well caught up on all my TV series. (Lots of R&R) I've tried 6 different Haagen Daz flavors so far and I'm just now doing some online shopping for an outrigger canoe, and this summer I will be going swimming in the pool at my apartment complex! I'm 165 lbs. 5'11" I'm gonna have to go dig out all my old slim-fitting jeans. Life's small perks will never be taken for granted by this guy ever again! Thanks to all for your support and input.


Guywithabag - Glad to hear about your success! My reversal was on Feb. 5 and I consider mine a success also. The first 4 weeks were pretty rough: lots of bathroom time, weird

appetite, and fatigue! Things are coming along slowly, but going in the right direction. Doc said it could be 3-6 months before my new normal settles in. I think more success stories should be posted. Congrats and good luck!


Guywithabag - Forgot to mention that when I was being prepped for surgery, I had written "For Sale" on my bag with a black magic marker! So glad to be rid of that thing!


Too funny, bagface! I know you are glad to be rid of that thing! Pretty sure the demand is low for your used bag! Lol



GuyWithABag... Good luck!


Puppyluv - Yeah, nobody made an offer!


Hi Raidergrl...

I was curious. What was the verdict? Hopefully you are a candidate for reversal.



Bagface... that's funny. I left my stoma cap on, purposely. (75.00) Knowing that the surgery staff would toss it, I wrote non-recyclable. My sister is an O.R. nurse at this hospital, (not in on my surgery) and she heard about it from her colleagues. One must maintain a sense of humor, especially in times like this.   Peace


Guywithabag - You're so right about the sense of humor! I like yours, too!


Raidergirl - How did you make out with your reversal?