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Colostomy bleeding

Posts: 160
Joined: Mar 2011

Ok....After numerous restitching and cauterizing his stoma and area around for the last year, hubby had a colostomy revision Oct 2. Complications and a 23 day stay later, he is
at home and changed the pouch last night, Bleeding again!!!!!!! After laying flat and compressing it for 10 minutes it quits. So bathed him, changed sheets, cleaned bath floor,vanity and everywhere else. Was so angry at this, I explode. Talked with onc today, surgeon that did the revision still out of town. Oncologist said that after consulting with surgeon last week, they feel the only way to stop the bleeding would be to
close that colostomy and put a new one on the other side of the addomen. Then they would
still not be able to guarantee that the new one would not bleed. Apparently the lining is
bleeding. Anyway, onc is very against a major surgery like this, because it delays chemo.
We are going to get another surgical opinion, hope that there is some other choice. Anyone else ever have this kind of bleeding? How did you get it to stop? Thanks, Brenda

John23's picture
Posts: 2140
Joined: Jan 2007

"Apparently the lining is bleeding. "

What "lining"?

When a stoma is formed, the intestine is pulled through the
skin, and stitched at the base, then it is turned inside-out
upon itself, and the end is stitched to the peristomal skin area.

The reason this is done, is that the inside of the intestine is
impervious to the acidic nature of the intestinal fluid; so there
will be no damage to the stoma when the waste is ejected.

That is why the hole in the appliance should be as snug to
the stoma as possible. The waste will eat away the skin, but
not the stoma.

When you look at the stoma, you are actually looking at the
inside of the intestine, not the outside! It's like a sock partially
turned inside-out.

The bleeding can be from many things, including too much
handling of the stoma.

If the hole is too tight, it can cause bleeding, or if the stoma
is in a spot where the clothing may be irritating it from too
much pressure upon the stoma, it will bleed.

There's also a healing process involved, and a stoma can
bleed simply due to the fact that the peristomal area is not
yet healed enough to support a pouching system.

Getting a revision is a major issue, since it puts the patient
back to "square one". There's about 6 months to a year's
worth of healing, and the stoma's adjustment to have to go through.
before everything settles in; don't expect too much too soon!

The care of any stoma is no different, regardless of the type
(urostomy, colostomy, ileostomy). each has it's own nuances,
but the care of the stoma and peristomal area are the same.

Don't panic... there isn't any problem that can't be solved!

If you do not have a WOCN, tell your surgeon that you
want to be referred to one. He is obligated to do that much.

Let me know how you do, ok?

Best of health to you both!


TMac52's picture
Posts: 358
Joined: Aug 2010

Brenda, I know how frustrating this can be but it sounds like you need to give it some time to heal. It's been a little over a year for me and I still bleed once in awhile.
John explained it so well. Good luck Tom

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