Advantages It can be a life saver.
Disadvantages You have to re-style your life.
Living with an iliostomy.An Iliostomy? I have never heard of that, what is it? This is the usual comment when I tell someone that this is the operation that I have had.
This operation was inevitable after many years of suffering with a stomach complaint that none of the doctors at that time could diagnose.Crohns disease was diagnosed two days before I was admitted to hospital. I had been so ill for so long that I thought that I must have Cancer and no one would tell me.
I used to dream that I was dying and nobody would take any notice. I was in a disastrous marriage at the time, but with three young children could do very little about it.
My husband would not accept that I was ill and I was regularly being accused of malingering to get out of the housework.
I used to love my home and housework was not a chore, I enjoyed cooking, and worked from home full time, designing knitwear.
Finally I left home with the children, my relatives looked after them, thank goodness. I was so lucky to have them to do this for me, as within a week of arriving at my Aunts, I was admitted into hospital where they diagnosed crohns disease. Many months later I was informed by the Sister on the ward that I was given just three weeks to live when I first arrived.
Three more long months in the hospital and I was ready to convalesce and return to my daughters…………………
I have given this background to enable you to understand a little of my new lifestyle.
An Iliostomy is a small round hole on the right side of the stomach just below the belt. (colostomies fashioned from the colon are on the left hand side) The iliac (the small intestine) is brought through the hole then turned outwards, and stitched to the rim of the hole. This heals itself very quickly. The result is a stoma that is then covered with special dressings, which I will talk about later, and a pouch (small synthetic bag) is attached.
LIVING WITH AN ILIOSTOMY…..
Because my Crohn's had been left undiagnosed for so long, much of the large intestine had been infected, along with the rectum. Consequently the whole of the colon, rectum and some of the small intestine had to be completely removed.
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