Questions to ask your stoma nurse before ostomy surgery

Before Surgery

Hear from Kate our Community Stoma Care Nurse

Before you have your stoma surgery it is important to have an opportunity to ask your stoma nurse and surgeon some questions to prepare you for life with a stoma. Here are some ideas of questions you might like to ask:

  • What will my stoma look like? How big or small will it be?
  • What will it feel like? Will it hurt? Can I hurt or damage it?
  • Will my stoma be permanent or temporary?
  • How does the stoma actually work?
  • What will the output look like?
  • Will there be an odour from my stoma or from me?
  • Will I feel any sensation or need to go to the toilet from my back passage?
  • Will my stoma be visible under my clothes? Will I have to buy new or different clothes?
  • What does a pouch look like? Are there different sizes, types, colours, styles of pouches?
  • Will people notice I am wearing a pouch?
  • How do I change the pouch?
  • How often will I need to change or empty my pouch?
  • Could the pouch leak?
  • Where do I get supplies?
  • Will I have to change my diet?
  • When can I go back to work?
  • Will I be able to go out with family and friends?
  • Will I be able to continue participating in my hobbies and pastimes?
  • How will my stoma affect my sex life?
  • Will I be able to travel?
  • Where can I get extra help and support? Can I be introduced to other people that have a stoma?

These are just some ideas to help you yourself think of questions and answers that matter to you. Write down a list of questions before you attend your pre op hospital appointment and be sure to be given the time to ask the questions you want answers too.

You can also ask questions to our friendly community members who will have been through a similar experience – Visit the bigger life community

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