Colostomy: A Guide

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If you are hospitalized while you have a colostomy

Take your ostomy supplies with you if you have to be in the hospital. The hospital may not have the same type you use. Be ready to do some explaining and teaching, especially if you go to a hospital where colostomy patients are rare, or if you go for a problem not related to your ostomy.

Do not assume that all hospital staff know a lot about colostomies. Do not let the hospital staff do anything you think may be harmful, such as give you laxatives, give an enema through your stoma or rectum, or use a rectal thermometer. If you’re in doubt about any procedure, ask to talk to your doctor first.

Also ask to have the following information listed on your chart:

  • Type of ostomy you have
  • Whether your rectum has been removed or is intact
  • Details of your management routine and the products used
  • Procedures to be avoided (see above)

Last Medical Review: 12/02/2014
Last Revised: 12/02/2014