Category : Clare Mee

Things I wish I had known about stomas before surgery

There were a few things that I wished I had known before surgery, but having emergency surgery didn’t give me much time. What my stoma will look like The very first thing that I noticed was in the photographs of stomas in leaflets etc given to me by the stoma nurse just before, the stomas were all tiny little neat buds with exceptionally clear skin. I feel this isn’t reality and no one has a tiny bud of a stoma […]

Home delivery of ostomy supplies

I am very lucky here in Nottingham UK, I have lots of ways to order supplies and good links to stoma nurses too. My stoma nurse is Kate Wilson at the Queens Medical Centre in Nottingham and she has been fantastic. I can ring her any time and she will get back to me as quickly as possible. Stoma nurses are not given as much recognition as they should have because most people don’t know they exist unless they have […]

My thoughts just before and after emergency stoma surgery

Before stoma surgery Many years before my stoma surgery I had a bad flare up of ulcerative colitis, but because it was left sided colitis ,surgery was discouraged. The flare lingered for a year and I was admitted to hospital a few times during that year. Surgery was mentioned and I met a surgeon just to discuss the possibility of surgery if other medications were not successful. I was also shown a video with people and their stomas, which was […]

Learning to accept your new stoma

Life with an ostomy bag can be a struggle especially in the beginning. If you know that it is going to be permanent or that you will have it for many months I think you have to be able to talk to someone about this, otherwise all your questions will go unanswered except by yourself, which is ( in the words of Lord Sugar himself) a fatal error. You will suffer much more without support, there is plenty out there […]

My experience of having a proctectomy

After my initial surgery for a permanent ileostomy, I had a perineal proctectomy. I was unable to have the rectum removed at the same time because the rectum and anus was so severely diseased and I was nutritionally compromised so the healing process would not have worked well. As it happens I didn’t heal so well anyway. The rectum wasn’t strong enough to hold the stitches and I had a rectal stump blowout. This lead to pelvic sepsis which took […]

Back to work after stoma surgery

I was off work for just over a year. Mainly because I was off with the flare up of indeterminate colitis for four months, that was even before the surgery. I found that very difficult as I worried all the time about work and being off for so long. Work were always brilliant though and gave me no reason to worry, it is just in my nature. My managers came to visit me before I had surgery just to check […]

My mental health before and after stoma surgery

Before surgery When I had ulcerative colitis I developed anxiety attacks, I really struggled to go out to unknown places with people other than close friends or family. I was fine at work and in my usual places. I think it started because whenever I went out I sometimes felt unwell, due to the colitis, especially after a meal, and I just wanted to go home. As soon as I got home and in my comfy clothes I would feel […]

How I look after my stoma and surrounding skin

It can be very difficult to keep the skin around your stoma pain free, especially if you have other issues like fistula or uneven skin. It can be trial and error with solutions and bags. One tends to carry on with whatever bag is offered in hospital and struggle through because we don’t know any different. But, the truth is there are lots of different bags/appliances/pouches available to try, you just need to do some online research and then order […]

Why I named my stoma

I remember being very overwhelmed whilst in hospital. I had plenty of time to ponder as I was there for two and a half months. I googled a lot, trying to find out about others people’s experiences with stoma surgery. I found out that many ostomates name their stoma. This was different, I was amused at first and chatted with some of my fellow patients with new stomas like me. We decided to come up with some names. One named […]

Questions to ask before ostomy surgery

Hi, my name is Clare and I had emergency surgery to remove my large bowel and to form an ileostomy. Because it was emergency surgery, I didn’t get the opportunity to ask questions beforehand, and I think it would have helped me cope better with what I had to face. As hindsight is always a good thing, here are a few of the questions I would have asked my surgeon. 1. What is the name of the surgery I am […]