What Healthcare Professionals will I meet on my ostomy journey?

Before Surgery

Clinical Advisor

From A Bigger Life

Who you might meet and what their role is

Whenever you come into hospital for your stoma surgery you will meet a wide range of people, alot of the time everybody just merges into one and you can’t distinguish who is who. You will have already met your stoma nurse and surgeon but there will be other healthcare professionals you will meet immediately after surgery. We have created a breakdown of who you might meet and what their role is.

Pre-assessment Nurse

If you are booked in for your surgery then the first person you will meet will be a pre-assessment nurse. They will be the person who takes all your details and go through your medical history. If you need any other pre-assessment appointments they will arrange them for you. Your surgeon will work with them and provide you with a date for your surgery.

Ward Nurse

When you’re admitted into hospital you know there is a wide range of nurses on the ward, nobody expects you to remember all their names. There are some other healthcare professionals who work alongside the nurses on the ward. One of the first people you will meet after your operation will be the physiotherapist, they will be there to help you take big deep breathes after your surgery and encourage you to get up and out of bed because it’s so important to keep mobilising. It might be the very last thing you want to do but it’s so important to encourage good recovery.


The dietician is somebody else who you might meet. In some hospitals the dietician will always see new patients who have an ileostomy due to their diet being reduced and restricted for the first 6-8 weeks.

If you are coming into surgery unwell or underweight then the dietician will be there to encourage you to have a higher calorie intake with your food. Overall they will just be there to ensure you’re eating a good diet.


The pharmacist will visit you on the ward to make sure the medication that you are on is correct for you. They will be able to provide modification to your medication if there is a risk that your tablets won’t be absorbed the same as before your surgery.

Macmillan Nurse

If you have been diagnosed with cancer there may be a Macmillan nurse or a colorectal nurse specialist who specialises in cancer patients. They will be there to explain further treatment, chemotherapy or radiotherapy, support you emotionally through the diagnosis and also signpost you through to different people who can help support you.

Social Worker

If you need some help on discharge then the social worker will be there to help arrange care at home, there is usually a social worker attached to each ward. They can liaise with a community team to ensure that you have co-ordinated discharge home.

Do you have anyone else you we should add to this list? We would love to hear from you [email protected]

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