An ostomy or “stomaʺ is a surgically created opening in your abdomen that allows waste or urine to leave your body. There are a number of different types of ostomies, but the main reason for this surgical procedure is that the body can no longer effectively pass waste without help from an ostomy or stoma.
People with ostomies can receive care at home, including support from nurse specialists known as Enterostomal Therapists (ETs). ETs can provide the following specialized services:
- Before surgery: assisting the surgeon with determining the best location for the ostomy opening;
- After surgery: assisting with choosing the best ostomy supplies and appliances, and
- Providing expert advice and education on how to live with and manage an ostomy.
As individuals continue to live with their ostomies, changes in weight and health may cause appliance leaks to occur. Re-assessment by an ET nurse can help address problems as they arise.
It can take time to adjust to an ostomy and you will likely have many questions, like “What can I eat?”, “Can I participate in any sports?” or “Can other people tell I've had ostomy surgery?” We can help you become comfortable with managing ostomy care so you can continue to live your life normally.
Many people successfully return to work and are able to independently manage their ostomy care. Our goal is to help you get back to your best level of health, and we are here to help if you experience problems with ostomy supplies, leakage or other issues.