How to empty the Ostomy pouch? Pouch emptying skills

After your Ostomy surgery, the foremost thing you need to learn is how to change your Ostomy bag or pouch. This is the most important and basic part of Ostomy life.

This article is going to help you with all the possible things you should know.

Proving the pouch level

It is always recommended to empty your pouch when it is almost one-third filled. If your pouch gets too much filled with the contents then it will become heavier and pulls the skin barrier off the skin. As you can’t control the feces or don’t feel the flow of the feces you need to check it from time to time. You can do it by putting your hand on the pouch have a rough estimate.

Decide the best position

You should ensure enough water and you must have proper space in the bathroom so that the feces don’t spoil your clothes. The best position for you can be varying depending on the size and location of your stoma.

Your ease is the priority.

  • Sit on the toilet seat spreading your legs wide and in a forward position
  • Sit or stand while your face is toward the toilet and you are leaning backward
  • In case of a side position, you can sit or stand beside the toilet seat.

Draining or emptying the feces

  • You can sit leaning backward on the toilet seat or stand over it.
  • You must have a piece of toilet paper near you.
  • Then raise the opening end of the pouch.
  • Slowly open the pouch and unclamp or unfold the sealed drainage.
  • Lower down the opening point in the toilet seat. Move your hand’s side of the pouch to drain out the feces.
  • In case if you are in a standing position, then you need to flush out many times also you need to place toilet paper on your legs and in toilet seats. It will prevent the splashback of the feces.
  • Then wipe the opening and closing of the pouch with a toilet paper
  • Add the deodorant if needed
  • At last, put the clamps back or seal them again.

Changing the pouch

You need to change your whole one-piece pouching system every three to seven days. If you experience itching or burning under your pouch it means you need to change your pouch without any delay otherwise it will lead to an infection.

Bring all the supplies near you

The supplies you need are:

  • A new pouch
  • Wipes or toilet paper or moist towel
  • Pen or marker to write the size of the stoma
  • Scissors
  • Plastic bag
  • Stoma paste if needed
  • Skin barrier if needed
  • Pouch odor filter if required

Dispose of the old pouch

  • Start with peeling off the one end of the skin barrier.
  • Then start moving to the other corners and keep pushing it away from the skin. You can use a wet towel or adhesive remover to help yourself.
  • Put this old pouch into a disposable plastic bag.
  • If you use a clamp don’t put it with the pouch. Keep it for later use.

Cleaning and observing

  • Observe your skin around the stoma and observe the color of the stoma. The stoma must look red and damp.
  • Look for any redness or rashes. The skin must appear the same as the normal skin. You may use a mirror to have a clear view of the stoma.
  • Use warm water to clean the skin around the stoma. Don’t use oils because it will reduce the adhesion property of the barrier. Also, avoid:
  • Soaps Baby wipes
  • Pat dry the skin slowly and completely
  • You can use a little amount of skin powder if you experience slipping or weepy skin around the stoma. This powder helps in absorbing moisture.

Measure and cut the opening of the barrier

  • It is very crucial that the opening of your skin barrier is the same size as your stoma. After three months of the surgery, the stoma will stop shrinking. Initially, you need to measure the stomal size and cut the barrier according to it.
  • You should put a piece of paper or tissue over the stoma if there is a danger of any leaking when you’re measuring the stoma.
  • Then start measuring. You can use your measuring grid and mark according to the size of the stoma. If you have an irregular stoma then your doctor will give you a template according to it.
  • Then hold the measuri9ng at the backside of the barrier and trace the exact size.
  • Use the scissors for cutting the skin barrier. Don’t cut the front side of the pouch it will cause leakage and odor.
  • Place the new barrier on the stoma.

Place the new pouch

  • Peel of the lining from the back of the flange or skin barrier
  • Place the center opening over the stoma.
  • After placing the skin barrier around the stoma keep pressing the side for almost thirty seconds. Start from the area near the stoma. Always ensure that is properly attached to the skin.
  • In case of a drainable pouch close the opening.
  • Lower down the pouch
  • Clip your Ostomy belt if you use any of them.
  • Keep the supplies back to the place for using them again.

Ostomy accessories

Stoma care can be very easy and simple. You can use different accessories along with the pouch. You can take help from your ET nurse in this regard.

Stoma Paste

Stoma paste is used for contouring the uneven skin around the stoma. It fills all the gaps and creases and helps the pouch to remain in place.

You should apply the paste in a single layer. In case of very rough skin, you can add the layers but add the next layer after the first one dries completely. If you experience any allergic reaction to the paste, stop using the paste immediately.

Barrier rings

It is issued for the same purpose as stoma paste. It helps in contouring the gaps and prevents leakage. They are non-alcoholic. Don’t touch them too much it will reduce their sticking property.

Skin sealant or skin barrier

It is in spray form and provides a plastic coating to prevent the leakage of liquid.

Pouch deodorants or filters

They are used to reduce the foul-smelling In the pouch.

Adhesive remover

It is used while changing the pouch and helps in removing the old pouch without pulling or ripping the skin.