When you have an ostomy, urine leaves your body through the stoma
instead of the urethra. Since there is no muscle around the stoma, you are not
able to control when urine passes out of your body. An odor-proof plastic pouch
(ostomy pouch) surrounds the stoma to collect the urine and is held to your
skin with an adhesive. Pouching systems may be one-piece or two-piece.
Understanding how to
care for your ostomy will help you live comfortably with it. An ostomy nurse is a great support. He or she will help you learn to manage your ostomy so you can get back to a normal life. This will include learning how a pouch system works and how to replace your ostomy pouch. Your nurse will also give you tips on how to treat and prevent common problems, such as irritated skin.
In a two-piece system, the pouch and barrier
(sometimes called a flange or wafer) are separate. The pouch contains a closing
ring that attaches it to the barrier. This is generally a snap ring, similar to
those found on food storage containers. The barrier fits around the stoma and
sticks to your skin.
In a one-piece system, the pouch and barrier
are a single unit.
Both two-piece and one-piece pouches can be either drainable or
closed. These systems also contain a special valve or spout that adapts either
to a leg bag or to a night drain tube connected to a special drainable bag or
Drainable pouch. Place toilet paper in the
bowl to prevent splashing. Sit down with the pouch between your legs. The pouch
is held shut with a clip system. Simply unclip it and allow its
contents to fall into the toilet. Clean the end of the pouch with toilet paper
and reclip it.
Closed pouch. Unsnap the pouch from the barrier and
dispose of it. Do not flush it down the toilet. Putting the pouch in a Ziploc
bag reduces odor. You then need to attach a new pouch.