Helpful Tips For Choosing The Right Colostomy Bag
Posted: Dec 06, 2014
If you are recovering in the hospital after a colostomy procedure and are due to be discharged, there are some important things you should find out before you leave. For example, it is important to remember that once you are away from the hospital, there will come a time when you have to buy colostomy bags on your own. It is therefore essential to seek help from the ostomy nurse (sometimes called a WOCN or ET Nurse) about the right colostomy bag system you should purchase.
The type of colostomy bag you need depends on the type of ostomy that was performed on you – a urostomy, ileostomy or colostomy. Even once you have been given the relevant initial introduction to ostomy supplies and general stoma care there will be other questions you will face as time goes by, so it helps to stay in close contact with your ostomy specialist. Once you have familiarized yourself with the process involved with proper stoma care, you may want to experiment and try different ostomy bags, as it will help you find the one that works best with your own specific needs and requirements.
We will now spend a bit of time comparing a few different colostomy bag options to help you figure out which may be best for you.
2 Piece Ostomy Bag Or 1 Piece Ostomy Bag System?
Ostomy bag systems are classified in two distinct categories – 2 piece and 1 piece. A 2 piece ostomy bag includes a separate skin barrier. The skin barrier is the adhesive disc that is used to protect the peristomal skin (the skin surrounding the stoma) is placed around the stoma. A flange is used to connect the ostomy bag piece with the skin barrier piece. Although this system costs more, it is more efficient to use as you can change the bag without removing the skin barrier. Ostomy bags used in 2 piece systems should be changed at least every 1 to 5 days, while the skin barrier has to be changed around 1 to 2 times a week (sometimes more depending on skin issues, leakage etc...)
Unlike the 2 piece ostomy bag, the 1 piece comes with the bag and skin barrier already attached. 1 piece ostomy bags are quicker and easier to put on and replace and they are typically less noticeable when attached under clothing and more flexible due to the fact that they don’t have a flange that needs to be attached to a bag. However, 1 piece ostomy bags need to be replaced every single day.
As both systems work as well as each other, the choice of one over the other will depend on your own specific preference.
A Closed Ostomy Bag or Drainable Ostomy Bag System?
A further way that ostomy bags can be categorized is by whether they are closed or drainable. Closed ostomy bags are bags that need to be remove and discarded once they are full and are only designed for single use.
Drainable ostomy bags are open ended and sealed down either by a lock-n-roll or invi-siclose Velcro like system, or a clamp. They are designed to be easy to empty and wash, as they are supposed to be used more than one time. Drainable ostomy bags should be emptied once they are half full.
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