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Convex vs. Flat

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Posted: Thu Sep 28, 2017 4:58 pm

I am 5.5 months post-op with a colostomy. I started out flat and then needed mild convexity skin barriers (wafers) when my sutures came undone and my stoma sunk in on one side (the bottom, of course). I have had a lot of problems with stool post-op no doubt due to post-op chemo even now that it is finished... Anyway, I am wondering if anyone has gone back from convex to flat. My stoma sticks out well.  I am doing the experiment today with a flat skin barrier...

Posted: Sat Sep 30, 2017 2:37 am

Hello Ali. 

I'm sorry I don't have any knowledge in this area but it's great to hear that you are experimenting. Let us know how you get on. 

Best wishes

Bill

Posted: Sat Sep 30, 2017 11:15 am

Hi Bill,

So far so good but it is very nerve-racking.  I'm also hardly eating so it's not normal activity.

Ali Canada

Posted: Sun Oct 01, 2017 3:17 am

Hello Ali.

Good to hear that your experimentationis working for you and the nerves about it are quite normal.

Some of the stuff I've experimented with have been very concerning at times and it makes me wonder what the medics would have to say if it went wrong and I had to call them in. So far this has not happened and I've got away with some pretty scary experiments, some of which I'm still using years after I first tried them. I see the experimentation a little like trying out different foods in that if you try it and it doesn't work, at least you know what to avoid, whereas if you never try anything, you don't know if you could be enhancing your quality of life or not.

Best wishes

Bill 

Posted: Sun Oct 01, 2017 11:41 am

Hi Bill,

Glad to see I am not the only one who goes out on the edge but who also feels the pulse pounding with the decision. Today I plan on trying COFFEE which is the quintessential test.  I may even go for a walk to give it a real push! I did some stuff around the house yesterday but I need to see how this will hold up. Literally.

 

Posted: Mon Oct 02, 2017 1:25 am

Hello Ali.

I cannot drink coffee or tea unless it's decaffinated because the caffeine gives me the shakes as if I'm developing Parkinsons disease. I do a lot of walking and a little bit of other controlled exercise but that has come about in a gradually extending process, rather than trying too much all at once. My present jobs keep me active so this helps quite a bit without having to  think too much about it. I do wear a hernia belt all the time to try to prevent my hernia getting any worse than it is. 

I note that you have a colostomy which always makes me wonder about irrigation. If that is possible for you it would make a tremendous difference to you lifestyle during the day as it frees you up from wearing a bag and you could wear a plug instead. It would probably resolve the problem with stools as well as the irrigation does the work of clearing it all out in one go so you don't have to worry about consistency or blockages. Irrigation is not suitable for everybody but for those who are fortunate enough to be able to manage it, it works very well.

Best wishes

Bill

Posted: Mon Oct 02, 2017 10:54 am

Hi Bill,

I had chemo after my surgery with all kinds of complications including blood clots in both lungs and a pulmonary infarction. Although I am on medication for that, it's important I remain mobile until I return to work in December.  Like you, I have a job that keeps me hopping plus I walk to work. I live alone and have a house so I do whatever needs to be done myself. I try and pace myself. 

I have limited the coffee because I often get diarrhea afterwards. Yesterday was instant (yuck) but it was an experiment and it went OK.

I see my team of doctors in November and I will speak with them about irrigation although I was going to call their office and ask what to do about this stool issue.  I thought at this point - I will be 6 months post-op this week - I should have normal stool more often. It makes me not want to eat and I am down to 1-2 meals per day.

The flat bag is holding up well though.

 

Ali

 

 

Posted: Mon Oct 02, 2017 1:04 pm

 Bill is right about irrigation but check with your doctors first. I irrigate every other day and thanks to that, I'm able to work and be back to my "normal" self. Bill, where do you get the "plugs", not in the U.S. of course. Would love to get a hold of them. Please let me know, thanks 

Posted: Mon Oct 02, 2017 1:14 pm

Hi 619,

I can't imagine irrigating every other day. What a process! 

This whole colostomy life is getting me down, quite frankly. 

Posted: Mon Oct 02, 2017 5:15 pm

Oh Ali, I rather spend an extra half hour in the bathroom every other day, than restrict my self in any other way. I'm back to work as a server and travel frequently without a worry about blow outs, soiled pouch or any other unexpected surprises. What a joy, life sure is beautifulūüôŹūüŹľūüėú

Posted: Mon Oct 02, 2017 7:59 pm

WOW 619, I can't imagine that at all at this point.

Posted: Tue Oct 03, 2017 1:31 am
619newbie wrote:

 Bill is right about irrigation but check with your doctors first. I irrigate every other day and thanks to that, I'm able to work and be back to my "normal" self. Bill, where do you get the "plugs", not in the U.S. of course. Would love to get a hold of them. Please let me know, thanks 


Hello 619. 

I get the stoma plugs through my supplier on prescription but they are manufactured by Coloplast. They have worked well and have the advantage of being porous and let the gas escape without noise or smell (they have a filter fitted)

Over the past year I have been experimenting with some of my own designed reusable plugs and they have been working reasonably well. However, I'm only using them at nights, when I am not particularly active as they have been made of plastic or metal and I'm not yet sure what that would do if I exerted myself too much or got into awkward positions.

The advangtage of DIY is that things can be tailor made to suit my own needs, which in this instance is to keep the hole open to let gas out and train the muscles not to close tight over the hole. At the present time, I would not recommend the this technique but once I have perfected the prototypes and field-tested them during the day with normal activities, I will probably comment further.

Best wishes

Bill

Posted: Tue Oct 03, 2017 12:17 pm

Hi Bill,

 

I never heard of stoma plugs. I will have to look into that. I am usually active all day, including at night, so I don't know how this would work for me. I have appointments next month with the oncologist and surgical team and will bring it up (irrigation and plug).

 

Ali

Posted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 1:25 am

Hello Ali.

When I was talking about my wariness about being active with the plugs, I was referring to my own designs and not the Coloplast ones, which are soft and flexible allowing me to do anything I want during the day including lots of active stuff.

Perhaps I should also comment on the fact that since I've been irrigating I do not have output for 24 hours so there is really no need to wear anything at all except to protect the stoma and soak up the small amout of mucus. I wear the plugs because the hole would close tightly over if I didn't and any gas would not be able to escape, which tends to be painful. Also, the plugs prevent the stoma making a noise and filters the smell as the gas escapes so I've continued using them for those reasons.

best wishes

Bill 

Posted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 10:57 am

Hi Bill,

I have IBS. I don't know how this will all work with me. I will admit that this irrigation thing makes me nervous and apprehensive.

 

Ali

 

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