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Would you embrace technology?

imagineit2010's picture
imagineit2010
Posts: 153
Joined: Jan 2010

Just curious how many people with a colostomy bag had inquired into an artificial sphincter? When I first heard I would need a permanent colostomy I figured this was my chance to invent something important. I'm a tinkerer and inventor and actually have two medical devices I have royalty agreements on as well as a child product that is patent pending. As fate would have it I work for a prosthetic company dealing with some very sophisticated electronic artificial limbs. I thought, what a match made in heaven. Little did I know that many people had gone before me with the thought of replacing what surgery would take away. At this time I believe there are well over one hundred PATENTED devices and ideas designed to control bowel movements yet I've only heard of one. There is a fellow in London who had a procedure that used a muscle from his leg to wrap around his sphincter and keep it closed. He then uses a remote, much like a garage door opener, to stimulate the muscle and open his "poop shoot" and allows him to use the toilet like normal. Pretty clever actually. There are many high tech methods of acomplishing the same function but this seems pretty simple. Of course the comical questions and scenarios that followed the story were numerous but my favorite was, "I wonder if the remote has a fart button"....(Google- bionic sphincter) Just curious if anyone else looked into this idea or would be willing if the opportunity came up....
Chris

msccolon's picture
msccolon
Posts: 1956
Joined: Oct 2004

and why haven't we heard about them? I think they would definitely fill a necessary void here and possibly give more people the ability to go without an ostomy. Do you have some links where we can look more closely into these? Good post!
mary

RickMurtagh's picture
RickMurtagh
Posts: 584
Joined: Feb 2010

I am usually pretty open minded, so I think normally I would be game for something that would attempt to increase the quality of life. Unfortunately, what I would need now is something to replace my missing colon. A length of perforated garden hose with a miniature sump pump imbedded in my abdomen and some mechanism to render the liquid nontoxic to my system? I dunno, maybe some day they will make colons from a baboon's hemorrhoids or something, but for now I think I just have to go without.

thready's picture
thready
Posts: 475
Joined: Sep 2009

There have been artificial hearts, there will be products that will cause the body to regrow nerves and cause the body to replace cartilages. We have seen artificial implants placed in hearts, machines that use GPS systems to map heart electrical currents, transplants of just about everything and prostheses that can be controlled with brain activity, then why not artificial colons or mechanical rectums? Diabetics can get a "stomach pacemaker" that allows those who would have died to continue to eat and live.

You might be onto something with a modified garden hose, sump pump and detox station. I am sure there are research people who would be interested in your ideas!
Jan

PhillieG's picture
PhillieG
Posts: 4885
Joined: May 2005

I can just imagine some poor person who's spouse comes home after shopping and uses the garage door opener and then the person upstairs evacuates their bowels while the channel changes on the TV.

Something so small and often used to describe someone who is not important, it's one of the most important parts of our bodies. I know people can live good lives without one but it's good to know people are working on this issue for those who would like to have one.

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menright's picture
menright
Posts: 258
Joined: Oct 2008

I have definitely considered this and made inquiries. Dr. Wong and Memorial Sloan Kettering is working this very issue.

Unfortunately, I was told by his office that you need to be disease free to be considered. I look forward to re-visiting this option.

See Below:

W. Douglas Wong, MD, FACS, FRCS(C)

W. Douglas Wong, MD, FACS, FRCS(C)
Chief, Colorectal Service; Stuart H.Q. Quan Chair in Colorectal Surgery

I am the Chief of Colorectal Surgery and an Attending Surgeon at Memorial Sloan-Kettering. In this capacity, I lead the Colorectal Surgical Service and the Colorectal Disease Management Team. I am currently on the Executive Council of the American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons, as well as a Senior Examiner for the American Board of Colon and Rectal Surgery. I have co-authored many papers on colon and rectal surgery, and have lectured extensively in the field, both nationally and internationally.

My primary clinical and research interests involve cancers of the colon, rectum, and anus, with particular interest in sphincter-preserving surgery for rectal cancer, endorectal ultrasonography, and anorectal reconstruction following radical surgery. Currently, I am involved in experimental research on total anorectal reconstruction using an artificial bowel prosthesis as a possible alternative to permanent colostomy following surgery for rectal cancer.

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