Caring for your
ostomy is an important part of maintaining your
quality of life. You will need to:
- Empty your pouch as
- Replace your pouching system as needed (usually every 3 to 7 days). This may
include measuring your stoma (the exposed section of intestine) and cutting the
barrier to size.
- Care for your skin and stoma and
watch for skin irritation.
You may also
irrigate a colostomy, which helps you control when you
eliminate waste. Irrigation requires your doctor's approval and
Wound, ostomy, and continence nurses (WOCNs) are
available in some medical centers to help you learn how to care for your
This topic covers care for a
colostomy or ileostomy only. It does not cover care
How do I care for my ostomy?