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Ileostomy skin barrier medicinal odor

Posted by Shash, on Sun Nov 13, 2016 8:06 pm

Hi all

For the last month+ I have noticed a very medicinal odor that occurs after wearing my flange for 1 day or so;  it actually causes my clothing in that area to pick up the odor as well.  It is not the result of output.... not sure why this is happening and/or what can be done about it.  I switched products (was using Convatec) as I thought maybe I had developed a strange chemical reaction with what I was using but the new company product (Hollister) causes the same problem.  I am planning on calling both Convatec and Hollister to see what they think.  Any thoughts from you all are appreciated!  I really don't want to have to change the flange/pouch every day as the cost will definitely add up!!!


Reply by NJ Bain, on Mon Nov 14, 2016 11:44 pm


  I've never noticed a medicinal odor before, but once I started taking high doses of Omega-3 pills, I would notice a very strong metallic fishy smell that would permeate my clothing in that area as well.  I've found gummy Omega-3 pills that don't do that but they come in a much lower dose.

  Has your diet changed or are you taking any suppliments that may have changed the flora in your system?  Just curious.


Reply by Shash, on Tue Nov 15, 2016 11:13 pm

Hi Bain,

I started noticing this issue when I began using cortisone cream for psoriasis so I thought it was just the combination of the medicaiton with my skin (I was using it around the stoma area as well as a few other areas).  I found, however, even when not using the cream it would occur so not sure that was ever an issue at all...I do take Omega 3 Fish Oil but never noted that to be an issue but I will definitley investigate that a bit more.  I am now trying a Coloplast product and will say that this whole day I have noted no odor at all (of course I forgot to take the fish oil today so I'll see what tomorrow brings!)

Thanks for responding to my post


Reply by Shash, on Mon Nov 21, 2016 6:14 pm


I do think it was the fish oil...I actually took fish oil with my new Coloplast product and  by the end of that day I had the odor!  Since I stopped the fish oil, no more problem.   The owner of my healthfood store is surprised to hear this and said this indicates that I was not processing the fish oil so we will look to see how we can remediate this.

Thanks very much for bringing this to my attention

Reply by NJ Bain, on Tue Nov 22, 2016 1:32 am


  My pleasure.  I've been taking a lower dose gummy version of the Omega-3 and I haven't noticed an odor.  Of course, I have a cold right now and I still might have some odor.  I try to take them with food now, preferably fruit to better eliminate any odor.

  I'm guessing since I have an ileostomy, that I don't process the fish oil normally as one would with a large intestine.  It just makes for a big stink.  Like I said, I am taking lower doses but finding lots of foods that provide Omega-3 naturally such as fish and nuts.  It's just so much easier to take a suppliment in pill form.

  I'll let you know when my cold is gone and if I notice any odor.  I think it's great that this has been noticed.



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