A colostomy is the most common type of ostomy. It is a surgical procedure in which one end of the large intestine is brought out from the abdominal wall. This is done when there are problems with the lower bowel, making it difficult to pass stool from the anus.
After a colostomy, the large intestine works normally, but the anus and rectum are disconnected, and stool passes out from the abdominal opening, called a stoma. An ostomate has to attach an ostomy pouching system to collect the output and dispose of it.
A colostomy is performed because of certain injuries and conditions, such as:
A colostomy is classified on the basis of duration and location.
A temporary colostomy is done to give the large intestine some resting and healing time due to an injury, infection, inflammation, or surgery. An opening in the abdomen is created to keep stool away from the affected area while it recovers. Healing could take weeks, months, or even years, but once the large intestine has healed, this opening will be closed or reversed, and the stool will begin to pass from the anus again.
When a part of the rectum is diseased, and there is no hope for recovery, a permanent colostomy is performed. The diseased part is permanently removed, and the rectum is also permanently disconnected. Therefore, the opening will not be reversed, and the stool will always pass from the stoma.
A transverse colostomy is done in the middle or right upper abdomen. The objective is to allow the stool to exit before it reaches the lower bowel so that it can rest and heal from an injury, infection, or surgery.
This type of colostomy is temporary. It could be for weeks, months, or years and will be reversed once the colon has healed completely. But a permanent transverse colostomy is done if the colon has to be removed permanently.
The causes of a transverse colostomy maybe -
One of the most common types of colostomy, a transverse colostomy, is of two types – loop transverse and double-barrel transverse.
The loop colostomy may appear like one big stoma, but it has two openings – one for stool and one for mucus. The colon produces mucus to protect itself from the bowel contents and passes along with the stool. Even after the colostomy, the colon will keep producing mucus that will exit either through the stoma or through the anus, both of which are normal.
In a double barrel transverse colostomy, the bowel is divided into two. Although each opening acts as an individual stoma, it may or may not be separated by the skin. Here also, one opening passes stool and the other passes mucus. In some cases, the opening of the mucus-producing part is sewn and left inside, leaving only one stoma on the surface. The mucus will then exit normally from the anus.
An ascending colostomy opening is created on the right side of the belly, and only a small part of the colon remains active. That is why the output is liquid and acidic, as it contains many digestive enzymes. Because of the acidic output, the ostomate must always wear a pouch and protect the skin from the discharge. As the output is liquid, an ileostomy is preferable to this.
While most pouches are suitable for colostomies, choosing a pouch based on your needs should be a priority. Selecting an ostomy pouch is a personal and detailed matter. Keep note of the shape and length of the stoma, location of the stoma, skin folds, and nature of the output. You should also identify the type of pouch you would be comfortable using – a one-piece ostomy pouch or a two-piece ostomy pouch.
To make your selection easy, we have curated a list of the 5 best-selling colostomy pouches at HPFY -
Suitable for colostomy, this competent two-piece pouch is drainable and designed to be opened from the bottom. The integrated filters make it easy to wear for longer by releasing gas from the pouch, thereby reducing odor.
An ideal choice if you are looking for a secure and accurate ostomy pouch. This pouch is ideal for colostomy and produces audible clicks while closing the pouch at the bottom. It is made of latex-free, soft, and quiet materials.
This pouching system combines the skin barrier and pouch for security and protection. It is more suitable for a stoma that is flush, retracted, or located in a skin fold. It also has a filter to neutralize odor and reduce ballooning.
This is the go-to product for people with sensitive skin. It is designed to be opaque to remain discreet under the clothes. It conforms to the wearer's shape and stays flexible around the stoma.
Convex design helps to bring stomas to the surface for a proper fit. It stays discreet under the clothing because of the color and the design. The in-built belt tabs easily attach to the ostomy belts.
A colostomy may be temporary or permanent and vary depending on the location of the affected area. There can be either one or two stomas on the surface for stool and mucus.
While it can take some time to adjust to this new change in your body, you will get accustomed to it and get back to your normal lifestyle over time. You can resume work, play sports, and participate in all the activities you used to do before the surgery. However, it is important to keep an eye on any new symptoms or unusual discomfort that may arise and maintain proper stomal hygiene.
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Akanksha Nigam has been a Health Products For You contributor since 2021. With a Masters Degree in Finance, she began her Marketing career in the banking industry. However, her interest in human ...
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