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Caring for a Continent Ileostomy or K-Pouch


Other Helpful Tips About K-Pouch Care

These other tips can help you properly care for your K-pouch:

  • Inspect the catheter frequently to be sure drainage is flowing freely through the tube.
  • Irrigate the catheter twice a day, or as instructed by your ET nurse or doctor. Irrigate with 1 ounce of tap water, and let it drain off.
  • As a general rule, most patients will have continuous drainage into a drainage bag until their first follow-up appointment after surgery. During this time, you should not experience pressure beneath the pouch, an absence of stool draining from the catheter, or stool leaking around the catheter. If any of these signs or symptoms occur, check the catheter for kinks, irrigate the catheter, pinch the catheter between your finger and thumb and check if a fluid or air column can be seen moving up and down. If the above steps do not work to relieve symptoms, remove the catheter, clean it, and replace it. Call your doctor if problems continue.
  • Inspect the stoma daily. It should look shiny, moist, and red. Report any changes to your doctor.
  • If stool becomes too thick and movement through the catheter appears slow or difficult, increase your fluid intake to 10-12 eight-ounce glasses of fluid daily. Include water, juice, and other non-caffeinated beverages.
  • Never take laxative preparations, as they can cause diarrhea and lead to dehydration.


WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by Varnada Karriem-Norwood, MD on July 16, 2014
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