Today I had my third official visit to the stoma team and if all had gone well with the stoma, the plan was to set up me with a prescription and set me free!
The stoma is still a little irritated although has slightly improved with regular applications of calamine. The stitches are still present and there is some occasional bleeding around the stoma but the stoma nurse didn’t seem concerned about it so it must be normal to still be a little irritated at this stage.
The size of the hole was checked and I thought it would have to be quite tight to the stoma but a couple of millimetres around it is normal. I was advised that in order to aid the irritation I should move the hole around slightly to allow for different areas of the skin a chance to recover from being in contact with poop.
It doesn’t appear that the stoma is getting any smaller which is a sign that rather than the stoma nurses cutting the bags for me, I can have a prescription set up and have pre-cut bags sent to my house.
Unless I have any issues or questions, and I’m sure I’ll have some, I have now been set free and won’t have to see them again for three months by which point everything should be functioning perfectly. The stoma team are extremely helpful and approachable so I’m confident that if there are any issues I can give them a call and easily make an appointment to see them.
Apart from an accident this morning where ‘pancaking’ overnight caused a leakage at 2am, I have got on well with the current bags Dansac Nova) and they have stuck well even surviving a whole day after being in the swimming pool. Speaking of swimming pools I now have stickers which I can use to cover the filter when using the bags in water.
The nurse gave me some tips on prevent future pancaking such as eating and drinking regularly, covering the filter hole or adding a small piece of tissue inside the bag to prevent a vacuum forming. The current bags were leaving more adhesive residue than the other bags I tried but I was told not to bother with any of the products you can get to aid with removal as they can still irritate skin with overuse.
Whilst these bags are currently working for me, I don’t have to continue to use them if they start causing issues. I can also switch to a different bag from the same manufacturer or try a different manufacturer.
In preparation for starting running again, a support belt has been ordered from SuportX and will be delivered in a couple of weeks which will be perfect timing for when I (hopefully) am ready to start running again. The breathable belt will not only keep the bag in check but will also support the abdominal muscles and help prevent herniation. It can even be used in the swimming pool if I wanted to prevent the bag from moving around when swimming.
Sharing My New Bum
It’s taken me a while to mention it to the team but based on the good feedback I’ve been receiving I’ve shared this site with them so. Hopefully they’ll find it an interesting read and will share it with other new ostomates.