What Exactly Is A Stoma?
A stoma is a hole in the belly that can be linked both to your stomach or urinary systems, allowing waste (urine or feces) to be drained from your body. It seems to be a tiny circular chunk of pinkish flesh stitched to your body. It may be relatively flat against your body or extend like a spout. A bag will be worn from over the top of your stoma, which might be sealed or have a hole at the bottom. Because your stoma lacks nerve endings, you should experience no irritation.
There are a number of reasons why you might need a stoma, including bowel cancer, bladder cancer, inflammatory bowel illness, diverticulitis, or a bladder or intestine blockage. Based on the reason, a stoma might be temporary or persistent.
What to Anticipate From Stoma Surgery
Stoma surgery is frightening, and adjusting to life with an ostomy bag can be difficult. The thing to keep in mind is that, once you’ve healed from your surgery, you ought to be able to return to your usual routine with just minor modifications.
You may be concerned about just how your ostomy appears, feels, or smells, but assure that ostomy pouches are highly unobtrusive. In fact, determining whether or not anyone has an ostomy bag can be challenging. The majority of individuals are able to return to utilizing their old clothes, including tight-fitting apparel including skinny jeans.
Before your surgery, you’ll visit with a stoma doctor or a colorectal nurse, who will do basic blood tests, weight you, and go through the basics of your procedure with you. You may also be provided a stool preparation, such as a laxative, to consume before your surgery to clear your bowels. The nurse will also note the location of your stoma on your stomach.
This must be done in a place with no wrinkles or folds. A colostomy is often placed on the left side, whereas an ileostomy and urostomy are typically placed on the right. The length of your operation depends on the sort of surgery you’re having, but an end colostomy conducted through a keyhole takes about an hour and a half.
You’ll be admitted to a colorectal ward for observation. Your initial pouch will most likely be transparent so that they can see how the stoma appears. For a day or two, you can only consume liquids to enable your bowel to recover before returning to solid meals. You will then be willing to continue your treatment at home after your stoma ‘wakes up’ and becomes responsive, and you begin passing feces. Most patients stay in the hospital for 3 to 5 days in general, depending upon how well their stoma is working. While you’re in the hospital, a stoma doctor will come to see you and instruct you how and when to replace your pouch and manage your stoma complications.
Your Stoma and Diet
It’s difficult to know what you should eat and drink when you have a stoma. To help the bowel to heal, you may be recommended to eat a low-residue meal right after surgery. After that period of time, you can begin to reintroduce your regular meals into your meals. To prevent developing blockages in the intestine, several people are recommended to avoid consuming highly fibrous meals or foodstuffs with tough outer layers like sweet corn, popcorn, peas, and potato skins, and to prevent fizzy drinks if they generate a lot of gas. Try not to limit your dietary options. Many people find that having an ostomy relieves unpleasant bowel problems and helps them to return to a regular, nutritious diet.
Your Stoma and Workout
Some individuals may advise you that you should really not workout if you have a stoma, but this is just not correct. Heavy lifting and activity should be avoided for perhaps the first 12 weeks following surgery or till your colorectal surgeon says it is appropriate to do so; but, after that period, being an “active ostomate” may have a beneficial influence on your general health, just as it does for everyone. It’s crucial to begin gently; start with 30 minutes of walking each day and work your way up.
Strength training and Yoga are also effective kinds of workouts that may help you strengthen your core (build up the abdominal muscles). To avoid getting a hernia, remember to wear a supportive band or belt over your stoma. Your stoma nurse must be able to assist you with getting one fitted. The Colostomy Association has some useful tips for staying active while having effective ostomy care.