Despite efforts to maintain the intestinal tissue and treat gastrointestinal diseases, a large number of patients undergo ostomy surgery each year. Approximately 700,000 people in the EU, from young children to senior citizens, have an ostomy. Around 40% have a temporary, while 60% have a permant stoma. Living with a stoma has a huge impact on a person’s everyday life – both physically and psychologically.
Some of the more common physical problems many ostomates experience are:
These are just a few of the uncomfortable physical problems related to an ostomy.
The psychological and emotional impacts of having a stoma can be enormous. Having a stoma may potentially decrease quality of life and therefore the emotional state of a person should be assessed and supported on a regular basis.
Not only does the individual with the stoma have to cope with sensitive issues such as loss of control over elimination, they may also experience challenges concerning:
A severe concern expressed by many ostomates is the change of body image. The worries and fears include odour, noise, leakage, visibility of an appliance and perceived attractiveness to others as well as the feeling of being different. Some patients may also react with disgust and shock when waking up with a stoma, especially in case of an emergency surgery.
The illness leading to stoma formation usually also brings about great emotional pressures. The planning and implementation of care for a patient with a newly formed stoma is therefore very important, as the effect of both illness and stoma surgery has the potential to alienate patients from social activity so that they become reclusive in nature and develop elements of depression.
A study on quality of life for people with ostomy was conducted from August 2013 to January 2015 in Cairo, Egypt. The study enrolled 96 participants and showed that all of the patients reported one or more complications and/or problems, which included difficulties finding privacy to empty the pouch (51), leakage (37), the need to adapt their clothing (69), local skin irritation (28), the presence of offensive odor and/or bowel noise (90) and difficulties participating in social activities (72)
This study reinforces the need to redirect our attention to the health and wellbeing of patients with stoma, seeking to identify appropriate solutions to their daily challenges.
Some of the challenges encountered when having a stoma can be addressed by using stoma belts.
StomaSafe Classic and Stomasafe Plus can be used either in specific situations, e.g. during sports activity, or during completely normal everyday activities, all day and night, as preferred by the user.
StomaSafe Classic is well known for its supportive function and breathability, especially during nighttime use or in warm seasons.
Stomasafe Plus is renowned for its supportive function and skin friendly softness of the material, similar to soft and silky smooth underwear, offering superior comfort.
With these belts the user gets a solution that offers safety and addresses some of the physical and psychological challenges experienced when having an ostomy.
Physical challenges addressed by the StomaSafe Classic and Plus:
Both belts are made in a fabric with great elastic properties to ensure that the stoma is able to produce under the fabric and hence the stoma flow is not affected by wearing StomaSafe.
Psychological challenges addressed by StomaSafe Classic and Plus: