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Stoma product selection: an update

02 April 2023
Volume 28 · Issue 4


There are three main output stomas—colostomy, ileostomy and urostomy. Each of these requires a different stoma appliance to collect and contain the stoma output. This article discusses stoma product selection, things to consider before choosing a product, as well as caring for the stoma.

There are three main output stomas, with each type requiring a different stoma appliance to collect and contain the output. It can be useful to consider the output to better understand the stoma appliance required. To ensure that the appliance is well-fitted, the aperture should be the same shape as the stoma, but 2-3 mm larger (Figure 1). The aperture in the stoma appliance can be cut or companies make them with pre-cut circles of different sizes.

A colostomy is formed from the colon and the output is flatus with formed faeces. The colostomy output needs to be collected in a closed appliance as it is thick in consistency and cannot be drained. A colostomy appliance is commonly replaced daily. Also, as flatus is passed, it will need a filter to release it.

If formed from the small bowel (ileum), the stoma is called an ileostomy and the output is flatus with loose faeces. The ileostomy output needs to be collected in a drainable appliance (Figure 2). The loose faeces needs to be drained into the toilet between 4-6 times each day and sometimes once at night. There is also a flatus filter in an ileostomy appliance.

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