Is it just a matter of finding the bag that fits right for YOU? Like every person's shape & build is different, & every bag is a little different so each bag will fit differently for each individual? Is that the secret? Or is it the seal?
Absolutely! That is why there are so many different brands and types out there. Ring around the various manufacturers or go to their websites and get as many free samples for Al as you can.
The main manufacturer's sites are
you can order samples directly from the websites.
Also, you need to understand that paste is NOT an adhesive as the name implies - it's more a caulking agent used to fill in any gaps between your skin and the wafer and stoma. It WILL NOT make a bag stick any better. Whether a person uses paste or not is entirely up to them - some people need it, others don't, it's really a matter of experimentation (as are most ostomy matters). Eakin Seals, Coloplast strips and Hollister strips all do the same job as the paste but, in my opinion, are much better in that they don't contain alcohol like paste does (which can sting sore skin - ouch!) and have healing properties in them for damaged skin.
If Al's stoma is flush to the skin (ie doesn't stick out) then convexity may be a big help to him. Convex appliances come in both one and two piece bags or you can buy reusable convex inserts from certain companies to use with bags that have flat wafers. Convexity will help push the skin around the stoma in and so help the stoma protrude a bit more and hopefully make all the stool go into the bag and not under the wafer.
When applying his wafer, make sure is skin is dry! Any moisture on it and it will compromise the seal. A belt may also help keep his appliance on. Another tip is to warm the wafer up between the palms of your hands before applying it. The warmth helps it stick better. Others prefer to use a hairdryer on it's lowest setting to warm it up once it's on the skin. Al will work out which way is best for him with time.
In the first few months, his stoma will shrink in size (initially, it's swollen due to the trauma of surgery). Therefore, it is crucial that you measure his stoma each time his bag is changed so you can be sure that you're cutting the wafer to the correct size.
To a lot of people, less is more. The less things you use on your skin beforehand, ie skin prep, barrier wipes, etc, the less chance you have of something stopping your wafer from sticking. This may sound strange since all that stuff is supposed to help but, believe me, a lot of people have found that they get better wear time by not using anything under the wafer.
If Al rinses his appliance when emptying with a squirt bottle, etc, tell him to try to make sure that the water doesn't get up to the wafer part. If it does, the water can erode the wafer and limit wear time.
Remember, the average (not normal - average) wear time for appliances is 3 - 4 days although some people are luckier and get a longer wear time than this, others are not so lucky and get a shorter weartime. Weartime is a very individual thing.
It really is a matter of experimentation. Hopefully, sooner than later, you will hit on a combination that works for Al. Everyone is different, which is why there are so many different products out there to try.
Hope this helps.
I have had an ileostomy for 31 years now due to UC.
Moderator of the Ostomy Forum
I'm not a complete idiot - some parts of me are missing!
Post Edited (Shaz032) : 2/7/2007 2:01:39 AM (GMT-7)