About

Having to live with a urostomy seems daunting at first. But like anything new, getting used to it will take some time. Over time, it gets easier.

During your hospital stay after urostomy surgery, you will start getting training from an ostomy care nurse regarding how to care for a urostomy. That nurse will help you understand everything regarding how to use a urostomy pouch and how to care for the skin around the stoma.

Another way to learn how to live with a urostomy is to speak to someone with a urostomy. Speaking to such an individual will help you get some valuable information regarding ostomy care. You will be able to learn some good tips and tricks in this regard.

In case you wonder, adapting to a urostomy is as easy as getting used to a new routine in your life. Although this urinary diversion deprives you of the ability to expel urine through your urethra, it doesn’t make you a handicapped or disabled person by any means. You can go to work, eat anything you like, and engage in your favorite physical activity without worrying about your stoma or ostomy bag.

The stoma

Before the operation, your ostomy care nurse will plan the position of your stoma. The purpose of planning this spot is to make sure that your stoma doesn’t come in line with a strap or belt. The stoma may be placed on the right or left side of the abdomen, depending on circumstances and your preferences.

You may also get a chance to give input on your preferred stoma location. For instance, you may want your stoma to be placed on the left side of the abdomen if you are a right-hand golfer. That will help prevent your stoma bag from interfering when you play golf.

Before and after the operation, your stoma care nurse will show you how to empty, clean, and change your ostomy pouch. You can also ask your friend or one of your relatives to accompany you during that time and help understand the procedure well.

You can choose from different types of urostomy bags, depending on your circumstances and preferences. The best thing to do is to try empty or changing your ostomy pouch in privacy to avoid interruptions.

Appearance

Because urostomy bags are flat, they will remain unnoticeable under your clothes. The most crucial factors in determining the noticeability of a urostomy pouch are the size and location of the bag. While some urostomy bags allow a patient to wear tighter clothes, loose clothing is the best option to prevent things from getting uncomfortable. One of the reasons you may be concerned about the noticeability of your urostomy is that you have it on your abdomen. Others won’t be able to notice it until you choose to tell them yourself.

Using a urostomy bag

A urostomy bag sticks to the skin around your stoma, allowing the stoma to open into the bag. That is how it collects urine. Since it is waterproof, you can continue wearing it while taking a shower or swimming.

All urostomy bags are drainable. They contain a valve at the bottom, allowing the wearer to empty the bag when full. The duration of the use of a urostomy bag varies from person to person.

Each urostomy bag comes with a flange having an adhesive on the side that has to go against the peristomal skin. That adhesive forms a seal between the ostomy pouch and the peristomal skin. The longevity of this adhesive depends on the type of skin and other factors.

Skincare

Urine has some quite irritating effects on your skin. That is why it is necessary to prevent their contact with one another. The best way is to apply the skin barrier or flange when your skin is completely dry. Some skin conditions can also affect the way your flange works. You have to discuss everything with your ostomy care nurse.