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01-16-2015, 03:38 PM   #1
comewinter
 
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Stoma smell?

Hey
I got a subtotal colectomy with an ileostomy 2 weeks ago. Home from hospital now and getting on well! I don't mind having a stoma and am already seeing benefits and feeling much less pain. My only concern with the stoma is that I can constantly smell it. Especially at night when it fills up with air I can smell it very strongly. I'm using coloplast bags with 2 filters. Any advice? I will be moving back in with my boyfriend once I'm recovered and I really don't want to be stinking out the bedroom at night time!
thanks,
Kiera
01-16-2015, 06:45 PM   #2
Jeff D.
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You may wish to go without the filters. I haven't used filters in years as they are awful when they get wet. I have had a lot of success with convatec bags and wafers without the filters. I also use a belt to hold it in place. It now only smells if I haven't changed it in a while. I have been getting about seven days of wear time. Good luck, try lots of supplies and see what works best for you
01-16-2015, 07:55 PM   #3
DJW
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I second everything Jeff D wrote.
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01-16-2015, 10:35 PM   #4
2thFairy
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You might cover the filter with the stickers that are included in the box. I always cover my filters after they get wet. Or use the kind with no filters, as suggested above.
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01-17-2015, 05:16 AM   #5
UnXmas
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I've never noticed a smell. A smell means my bag is leaking! It's the first sign I get of a leak.

But when I empty or change the bag I always squirt air freshener around the room.
01-17-2015, 05:13 PM   #6
Grotbags
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When I got my Ileostomy done, the stoma nurse said it was quite common for people to be convinced there was a smell, but when asked, their family and friends reported they couldn't smell anything.
I only smell mine on changing and emptying, I use Coloplast too.
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01-18-2015, 09:59 AM   #7
UnXmas
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When I got my Ileostomy done, the stoma nurse said it was quite common for people to be convinced there was a smell, but when asked, their family and friends reported they couldn't smell anything.
I only smell mine on changing and emptying, I use Coloplast too.
It depends on the person though. I know that when I've emptied or changed, the bathroom smells unless I squirt air freshener, but my dad swears there's no smell, but everyone else I've asked (a few family members) confirmed there is definitely a smell. I assumed my dad has a very poor sense of smell, but he objects to the smell of the air freshener! He's also objected many times in the past to various perfumes I've used. So for some reason he can't detect the smell of stoma output, and hates pleasant smells - none of my perfumes are excessively strong, I've checked with my sister and she likes them.

comewinter (interesting username btw!), maybe it's possible you detect a smell that's not actually that bad? You shouldn't be able to smell the stoma output when the bag is closed and not leaking. Maybe it's the bag itself that's omitting a smell? I have noticed my bags (when new and unused) smell a bit like plasters, a sort of antiseptic kind of smell, though it's very faint.

Maybe ask your boyfriend, he might not even notice it like you do.

Also how well have your surgery incisions healed? When healing they will always smell a bit, they may smell a lot if there's an infection. The smell is different to the smell of stoma output though. And your stoma output will smell more strongly if there is blood in it.

Apparently some foods can help or worsen the smell of output, I know there are many lists floating around the Internet of foods to try and avoid to combat smell. But I think it should still only be noticeable when emptying, not through a closed bag.

I don't even know if my bags have filters - how do you tell? Are they to let air out of the bag so they don't inflate when you pass gas? I don't have gas very often, but when I do my bag blows up like a balloon - is that because there's no filters?
01-18-2015, 11:37 AM   #8
Grotbags
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Filters are at the top of the bag, some are at the front, and some like the Coloplast Sensura, are at the back tucked under a flap, they'll be a different colour to the bag skin, at least the three types I've used are.
Once they get wet, they're pretty much useless anyway.
01-18-2015, 11:51 AM   #9
Grotbags
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Just thought after replying on UnXmas's other post, that the motion solidifying sachets would help with smell, I use them and can't smell a thing when I'm emptying my bag if I've put one in.
01-18-2015, 12:25 PM   #10
2thFairy
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I use Hollister M9 deodorizer drops in the bag. They don't work for everyone, but I have had excellent results using this product. I don't need an air freshener at all after emptying.
01-18-2015, 01:36 PM   #11
Nyx
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I used to put mouthwash in my bag to help with the smell when emptying.
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Oscar is awesome! Loving my life with my stoma (with a hint of poo)!!

01-18-2015, 02:04 PM   #12
Grotbags
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Would that not be bad for your stoma Nyx ?

Last edited by Grotbags; 01-18-2015 at 02:05 PM. Reason: Spelling
01-18-2015, 04:18 PM   #13
Nyx
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Never had any problems at all. My stoma nurse actually suggested it. just use antibacterial mouthwash.
01-18-2015, 04:53 PM   #14
Grotbags
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Random factoid of the day, mouthwash, started life as a floor cleaner
01-30-2015, 04:00 AM   #15
UnXmas
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I used to put mouthwash in my bag to help with the smell when emptying.
I don't have any major odour issues, but was curious when I read this so decided to try it yesterday. It smelt worse!! It was definitely very different from the usual output smell, but it was horrible. I don't know how to describe it.
01-30-2015, 07:14 AM   #16
DJW
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When I got my Ileostomy done, the stoma nurse said it was quite common for people to be convinced there was a smell, but when asked, their family and friends reported they couldn't smell anything.
I only smell mine on changing and emptying, I use Coloplast too.
Mine told me the same thing.
01-30-2015, 12:00 PM   #17
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I found it was a lot to do with what I'd eaten. Seafood was particularly bad - but the smell was only when I emptied the bags.
There are Trio Diamonds - they look like silica gel sachets that you out in your bag. Or bag freshener sprays which also double as a handy size air freshener for when you're out and about
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01-30-2015, 12:06 PM   #18
Grotbags
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I got some pouch deodorants free, was quite surprised at how effective they were, although I imagine you'd have to keep adding them through the day.
01-30-2015, 04:18 PM   #19
Thistle
 
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I found it was a lot to do with what I'd eaten. Seafood was particularly bad - but the smell was only when I emptied the bags.
There are Trio Diamonds - they look like silica gel sachets that you out in your bag. Or bag freshener sprays which also double as a handy size air freshener for when you're out and about
I second this! If I've had fish for my dinner, it can be pretty smelly in the morning when I empty my bag, but only when I empty it. I've never had a problem with odour any other time... I had fish tonight, tomorrow morning will be fun

My stoma nurse also told me that we tend to think there is a smell about us, which other people don't notice.

I have a little air freshener on my wall and I usually have a scented candle lit in my bathroom from 6pm onwards as my stoma is most active in the evening.
02-04-2015, 06:53 AM   #20
UnXmas
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Following the failure of my trial of mouthwash in the bag, I ordered some samples of "lubricating deodorant" to see if that prevented bad odours when emptying and changing. I was also interested in the lubricating feature, as the blurb on the website said that this helps the output go down to the bottom of the bag and makes it easier to empty, as the output slides out without getting stuck around the outlet.

I've posted quite a bit on this forum about my preference for changing bags rather than emptying them; I find it hard to get the outlet clean when I just empty it. But for the sake of the environment, I want to extend the time I make each bag last for. I recently switched to using maxi bags, and with those I can go a day and a half or so without emptying (and have been impressed by how well the bags hold out when very full ).

So I thought this lubricating deodorant might allow even more to be held in the bag before I need to change it by helping the output go down to the bottom of the bag, and/or make it easier to clean the bag outlet after emptying.

Well, I never got the chance to find these things out. The deodorant comes in little sachets, and is incredibly sticky, and I just got it all over everything. I even ended up wasting a bag as I got the sticky deodorant all over it, inside and outside, and didn't trust that even if I managed to wash it all off and dry it that the bag's adhesion wouldn't be compromised.

Due to other medical problems, I do not have good control over my hands and fiddly things are impossible for me, which is also part of the reasons I find cleaning the outlet after emptying tricky. So this deodorant may not cause so many application problems for everyone. I'm going to get someone else to put it in the bag for me and give it another try. Though I should also report that I didn't notice any lovely scent when I was trying to scrub the sticky mess off everything. Though I guess that it is probably meant to minimise the output smell rather than cover it up with another scent. I didn't notice a reduction in the output smell either (though that is generally not too bad), but I might just not have been paying much attention to it.
02-04-2015, 09:10 AM   #21
Grotbags
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I've been using Johnson's baby oil to lubricate the inside of the bag.
Don't know if you'd find it too fiddly, I get the spray bottle, a quick squirt up the drain hole after emptying, and everything slides out easily.
02-10-2015, 04:49 AM   #22
lotte26
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It smells cause you are now a hell of a lot closer to your butt than before. Plus some bags just don't hold in the smell so well. After my op the smell of my output is incredibly more potent and my dr said this was something to do with bile or something. pretty gross. You just have to change your bags more often. I change mine every 2 days and it starts getting smelly on the 2nd day usually but often it can be smelly at the beginning depending on the bag and the output . I have found the coloplast bags to be much less smelly than Hollister (even though I use Hollister - not by preference because of adhesive issues). Also your boyfriend will get used to it - you can do some pretty mean Dutch ovens now 😜💩 lol (perfume and air fresheners are good if you find good ones)

Hope you are feeling better! Stomas are awesome really 😉
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Crohn's disease since 2002, with multiple fistulae

25 May '11 : colostomy formed, 70cm bowel removed + 50cm ileum removed.

16 October 2015 - open parastomal hernia surgery to be performed

Past Failed Meds: Pentasa, azathioprine, methotrexate, Humira.

Current Meds: Humira, azathioprine, fluoxetine, Brevinor, Fish oil, melatonin
03-29-2015, 12:03 PM   #23
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I have a colostomy, I useclosed bags which I change 2 or 3 times a day. Nearly every day when my bag has output in it I can smell it. I have asked friends and family and they all say that they can't smell anything. The stoma nurse said it is not unusual for the person to smell output... No idea why though.
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