Everything You Need to Know About Stomas

Stomas are a type of urinary tract infection (UTI) caused by bacteria or other microorganisms that live in the bladder. They may cause no symptoms at all, but they can lead to problems if not treated properly. There are two main kinds of stomas:

1. Ureterocele – A urethral obstruction results from scar tissue forming around the urethra, which prevents urine flow through it.

Urinary incontinence is one of the most common reasons why people visit the doctor.

2. Pelvic outlet obstruction – This occurs when scar tissue forms around the opening of the bladder so that urine cannot pass out of it normally.

People with this condition have to use a bag called a catheter to empty their bladders regularly. Other causes include tumors, cysts, and infections such as pyelonephritis or abscesses.

The following is a list of things that could affect your ability to urinate:

Urinary frequency – How often do you need to go to the bathroom? Do you pee every time you wake up in the morning or only once during the day?

If it’s just once, then it might be possible for you to urinate standing up.

Bladder capacity – A healthy bladder can hold between 400 to 1000 milliliters of liquid. The way to find out your full bladder capacity is to drink 1 liter of water (1 quart) and then try to hold it. Time yourself for 15 minutes and write down how full your bladder feels on a scale of 1-5. You may need to do this a few times until you get the full picture.

Frequency of nighttime urination – How often do you wake up to go to the bathroom?

If it’s more than twice a night, then you may have an overactive bladder and need to see a doctor. This may be a sign of an underlying medical condition.

Frequency of urge incontinence – Do you wet yourself if you sneeze or cough hard? Do you have a sudden feeling that the urine needs to come out immediately?

This is a sign of urge incontinence and may require medication.

Frequency of flow incontinence – Do you wet yourself if you laugh too hard, exercise, or have a sudden movement?

This is a sign of excessive flow incontinence and may be caused by weak pelvic floor muscles.

Nocturia – The need to urinate at night is called nocturnal enuresis. It’s common in children and relatively uncommon in adults. If you are having nocturnal enuresis, then you may be dehydrated.

Frequency of bleeding – If you have blood in your urine or if it appears darker than usual, then this can be a sign of a medical condition known as hematuria. It can come from trauma, such as kidney stones, bladder stones, a UTI, or prostate issues.

Sources & references used in this article:

Boundary breaches: the body, sex and sexuality after stoma surgery by L Manderson – Social science & medicine, 2005 – Elsevier

Coping with an ileostomy by MP Kelly – Social science & medicine, 1991 – Elsevier

The impact of an ostomy on sexuality. by E Sprunk, RR Alteneder – Clinical journal of oncology …, 2000 – search.ebscohost.com

Development and validation of a quality of life questionnaire for patients with colostomy or ileostomy by L Prieto, H Thorsen, K Juul – Health and Quality of Life Outcomes, 2005 – Springer

Practical stoma care by P Black – Nursing Standard (through 2013), 2000 – search.proquest.com

What do surgical oncology staff nurses know about colorectal cancer ostomy care? by R Gemmill, K Kravits, M Ortiz, C Anderson… – The Journal of …, 2011 – healio.com

Colostomy in anorectal malformations: a procedure with serious but preventable complications by A Peña, M Migotto-Krieger, MA Levitt – Journal of pediatric surgery, 2006 – Elsevier

Care of patients undergoing stoma formation: what the nurse needs to know by J Burch – Nursing Standard, 2017 – journals.rcni.com