My ileostomy output is sometimes thick, sometimes thin and sometimes like water. I'm used to that, and I know that foods can affect the consistency. But I also have noticed that sometimes the output seems what I might call "blended"--a smooth consistency--but a lot of times it just seems like chunks of various sized pieces in a watery base. Is that typical? Has anybody else experienced this?
Yes mine is thicker in morning upon waking up and more watery in consistency during the day. From what I have learned ileo is more thinner to watery consistency. I find on more watery days if I eat a banana it slows t up and I get more nutrition in system. I have been told herre pretzels, crackers and graham crackers help too. Since bananas work so well for me I haven't needed to add others. Hope this helps.
Yes, I have this a lot. It all comes down to what you are eating. Large pieces of roughage will come out as typical chunks. Secondarily, these chunks will in essence pull water along with it, hence the watery consistency. No need to worry.
Hi 2tired. You got good advice from Cann and Xerxes. If you take any anti-diarrheal meds, be sure you take them as prescribed and before meals thereby allowing your body more time to break down what you consume and absorb liquids and other nutrients. Folks with ileostomies are prone to dehydration (and possible kidney stones). Above all, do not drink less fluid in order to thicken your output. You may need to drink a lot more given that you identify yourself as 2tired. I drink water rich in potassium, like Gateaid or Smart Water. Ileostomies can be a mixed bag (sorry); but, whatever you do, drink.
Kidney stones really? Learned something new.
I too have varying consistency with my ileo output. I take a time release medication and I even end up with little balls from meds in my bag. I just avoid anything that can cause a blockage (been there and don't want to do that again) and drink water constantly to avoid dehydration (been there too). I didn't know about the kidney stone thing either. Great! Yet another thing to consider. It sounds like what you're experiencing is pretty normal, whatever that is for us. Side note: love the name as I too am very tired-all the time.
Kidney stones really? Learned something new.
Yes. My urologist warned me about this possibility before my surgery. Since then I have had two stones. I am now getting involved in a kidney stone clinical study to determine if some calcium based medication might be indicated. Here's a brief explanation from a National Institutes of Health report on stones and bowel disease:
Patients with colon resection and ileostomy form uric acid stones, as loss of bicarbonate in the ileostomy effluent leads to formation of an acid urine. This, coupled with low urine volume, decreases the solubility of uric acid, causing crystallization and stone formation.
Whether I need to take that medication or not, I know I am particularly prone to dehydration and must drink lots of water even when I am not thirsty.
My output is bout the same , but thats the first I heard about kidney stones though , and I learned the hard way about staying hydrated not fun going to the hospital so I drink lots of water ! went through hernia too went to fix it and it came back !
Oh my yes -- some things wil digest one day and not another --- I don't worry as long as there is good output --- I eat some things that will be very doubtful as to absorption but if they tast good I enjoy them... for instance I cannot absorb carrots or mushrooms but the bag doesn't care!!
A belated thanks to everyone for responses to my questions. I just now (Nov. 3, 2016) saw your responses for the first time. I must have missed e-mails telling me that there had been replies.
In any case, here's an update on my situation: I had my third blockage in 11 months and was in the hospital from Oct. 9-11. In previous hospitalizations, surgeons told me the main culprit was scar tissue. Of course, I still need to be careful about foods likely to cause blockages, but I have food limitations from other conditions (diabetes, kidney disease), which sometimes seems to conflict with what I'm supposed to eat (or not eat) as an ileostomate.
I know that I have problems with dehydration (I recently saw a nephrologist for the first time, and he pointed out that when I was in the hospital, and on IV fluids, my GFR and creatinine numbers improved, but when I went home, I got dehydreated again, and the GFR and creatinine numbers got worse.) I know I need to drink more fluids, but I have a hard time doing that, as it often makes me feel queasy and/or gives me heartburn. (I also have GERD.)
Regarding the consistency of ileostomy output, does anybody else have output that looks like thicker material suspended in (or at least separated from) watery stuff? Sometimes my output comes out "blended," like pancake batter or sometimes like oatmeal. But what I'm asking about is when the "solids" are completely separated from the watery output. Does that mean anything important regarding digestion or absorption of nutrients? Which kind of doctor should I ask about that? (I have so many different doctors for my different conditions I'm losing track of them all!)
In any case, thanks again to those of you who already responded to my original message.