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ARTICLES:  

A GAS-TLY SUBJECT
CHEWING GUM AFTER BOWEL SURGERY
COLOSTOMY AND CONSTIPATION
EXERCISE: THE FINAL INGREDIENT IN OSTOMY MANAGEMENT
HOSPITALIZATION GUIDELINES FOR OSTOMY PATIENTS
INFECTIONS IN UROSTOMIES
MY DOCTOR SAID I HAVE A HERNIA
OSTOMY OBSERVATIONS
PREVENTING KIDNEY STONES
MY DOCTOR SAID I HAVE A HERNIA
UROSTOMATES & FLUIDS
VISITING A PATIENT WITH A TEMPORARY OSTOMY
PREVENTING KIDNEY STONES
MY DOCTOR SAID I HAVE A HERNIA
UROSTOMATES & FLUIDS
VISITING A PATIENT WITH A TEMPORARY OSTOMY


A LETTER FROM OUR CHAPTER PRESIDENT
HELP WANTED

CHAPTER MEMBER DUES

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ARTICLES:

A GAS-TLY SUBJECT
The Ostomist, Greater Seattle Chapter, UOAA

   If one were to search for the most embarrassing bodily phenomenon, the passing of gas would certainly come out on top. The average person passes gas about fourteen times a day, in spite of all attempts not to. Physicians refer to the process as flatus of flatulence which only rarely requires a visit to the doctor's office.

Technically speaking, gas can pass either by way of the mouth (belching) or by way of the anus (flatulence). Each is considered unacceptable in polite society. In some societies, the belching after a meal is deemed complimentary to the cook/host.

As a result of incomplete digestion, gases are formed in the alimentary canal. Normally food is broken down into simple sugars, amino acids and fats in order to be absorbed and used by the body. However, complex sugars found in certain foods tend to resist this process and end up in the large intestine where they begin to ferment, forming carbon dioxide which works its way to the outside. While beans are notorious gas producers, eggs, cheese, cucumbers, onions, garlic, fish, dairy foods and coffee, as well as such high fiber foods as cabbage, whole wheat bread and broccoli are known to produce their ample share of gas.

To avoid intestinal gas, chew food thoroughly, eat slowly and leisurely in a quiet atmosphere. Avoid washing solids down with a beverage. Don't gulp liquids. Avoid drinking from small mouth bottles or through straws. Do not lie down or sit in a slumped position immediately after eating. Learn to enjoy yogurt and parsley. Never put a pin prick in your pouch to release gas; it will also release odor.

Consult your friendly appliance dealer or ostomy nurse about venting pouches; see your friendly physician about oral deodorants. Don't take bismuth sub carbonate against gas. If authorized by your doctor. Mylicon tablets or Mylanta liquid can relieve excess gas.

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CHEWING GUM AFTER BOWEL SURGERY
    
A study by published in the Archives of Surgery said that chewing gum after intestinal surgery could help reactivate paralyzed bowels. 

     Most of us that have had ostomy surgery know that after abdominal surgery the bowels often become slow or even shutdown.  Doctors sometimes call this phenomenon ileus.  When the bowels shut down, pain results with vomiting and abdominal swelling.  The patient may not even be able to eat or drink.  We are required to stay in the hospital until our bowels start working again.

     The study was conducted using 34 patients undergoing bowel resections on the sigmoid colon for diverticulitis or cancer.  It divided the groups in two, half who chewed gum and half who did not chew gum after their surgery.  The gum-chewing patients had sugarless gum three times daily for one hour at a time right after surgery until they were released.

     All of the patients who chewed gum passed gas several hours sooner than the half who did not chew gum, and they had their first bowel movements an average of 63 hours after surgery compared with 89 hours for those who did not chew gum. 

     Somehow, chewing stimulates nerves that promote the release of hormones responsible for activating up the gastro-intestinal systems in our bodies.  The gum chewers were released from their surgery after an average of 4.3 days versus an average of 6.8 days for the other patients.  Gum chewers also had fewer complications from surgery.

     The conclusion of the study was that gum chewing after bowel surgery helps the patient restart his/her bowels thus getting well faster.

Editor’s Note:  Those of us with GERD can greatly benefit from chewing gum.  Many people with GERD have had relief from symptoms from just chewing gum all during the day.  Many of these same people have virtually stopped using protein pump inhibitors to reduce stomach acid if they chew gum daily.  Using these drugs over only a few weeks is very beneficial; however, these drugs do upset the natural flora in our body and over time induce serious side effects.  People with GERD often are provided no other option.  Chewing gum is that better option.  The benefits of chewing sugarless gum for someone with GERD are miraculous!

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COLOSTOMY AND CONSTIPATION

Edited by B.Brewer UOAA 1/2011

Way back before surgery, did you go to the bathroom after a hot cup of coffee, milk, cold juice, bourbon or beer? Well, whatever made you feel that need then can make you feel the need now. Check it out. See if your irrigation can be helped by some of the things you used to do. Of course, if you have had colostomy surgery for a number of years, your previous habits may not be the same now. Your body can, however, be trained as it was before, and you can adapt yourself to certain habits which can help you to be in control. A glass of hot water or juice, or a cup of coffee before a morning irrigation may initiate gut reaction. Also, a glass or two of water after the water return starts is usually helpful. If you irrigate before going to bed, a glass of ice water or a cup of hot coffee should get you started. If you have not drunk much water during the day, it would be wise to drink an extra glass or two to make sure your tissues will not absorb so much or you may be left with little or no return. But what is you do not irrigate? Part of the difficulty in elimination of waste matter experienced by colostomates is due to lack of bulk in the diet. Consumption of white bread, pastry and highly refined foods does not provide the roughage and bulk necessary for proper evacuation of the colon. The deficiency can be overcome in part by the simple addition of bran to the diet. Bran can be made into muffins. Add raisins and molasses to taste. Diet. There is no such thing as a colostomy diet, A colostomy is not an illness, so try to eat the same foods you have eaten and enjoyed in the past. If you are on a diet for a condition such as diabetes or high blood pressure, of course you should stay on this diet. Foods can be acidic or alkaline, bland or spicy, laxative like or constipating. Individuals react differently to food. Try to return to your former diet, normal diet; omit those foods, which disagreed with you in the past, may still do so. Chew well and see the effect of each food on your colostomy output. To maintain good health, the body requires carbohydrates, proteins, fat, minerals, and vitamins. Water is not nutritious but is absolutely necessary. Having a balanced diet is a fitting way for people to maintain good nutrition and keep bowel activity normal. Every day your body needs meats or fish, dairy foods, vegetables and fruits, cereals and bread, and liquids. Talk to your physician or ostomy nurse if you have problems.

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EXERCISE: THE FINAL INGREDIENT IN OSTOMY MANAGEMENT
Adapted from the Coloplast Website, UOAA Update Sept 07 

Exercise has become fashionable" -- and that has probably done more to put
people off it than anything else.
If the thought of strobe lights, rowing machines and leotards gives you the shivers,
then take heart. There are no end of easy, enjoyable ways to make yourself a little stronger,
a little fitter. Just find the ones that are right for you.
Most of all, don't overdo it. Even light exercise is good exercise - for joints, your muscles,
your lungs and for your general sense of well-being. Gently does it.
To begin with, don't confuse exercise with sports. There's more to getting healthier than chasing
a ball around on a football field. Walking is a great place to start.
Post-operatively, just walking to the next door neighbors or to the end of the garden is fine.
When you begin to regain your strength, try to walk more - both for pleasure
and as an alternative means of transport. And when you do, walk briskly - so you get slightly out of breath.
Gardening is great, too. Digging, weeding, hoeing and mowing can constitute a superb day's workout.
And of course you'll have a showpiece garden to show for it.
Wait for about 3 months after surgery before beginning gardening.
You'll be surprised at bow quickly you feel the benefits. After a few aches in the early
days, you'll begin to feel more supple, and be able to do more without getting out of breath.
Doctor's orders - All doctors agree on the benefits of exercise - but it's a good idea to talk to
your doctor before starting an exercise program, especially if you're very out of practice or if
you have other health considerations, like asthma or a hearth condition. Your doctor will advise
you to take it easy to begin with and to enjoy yourself. And you can't get better advice than that.

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HOSPITALIZATION FOR OSTOMY PATIENTS

It is important for a person with an ostomy to know how he/she should be handled differently than someone without an ostomy when you need to be hospitalized. It’s up to you. It is very important to communicate to medical personnel who take care of you, including every physician that treats you, that you have an ostomy, and what type of ostomy you have. Here are some rules to help you cover the details:

Rule 1 – The Cardinal Rule!

If you feel something is being done or going to be done to you that might be harmful, refuse the procedure. Then explain why to the medical personnel, especially your physician. They will then decide with you if the procedure will actually be in your best interests.

Rule 2 – Supplies

Bring your own supplies to the hospital. Never assume the hospital will have the exact pouching system or irrigation system you use. Most hospitals have some supplies available. These are used for emergency situations.

Rule 3 – Laxatives & Irrigations

Follow the points below concerning laxatives or irrigation practices, according to which type of ostomy you have. Medical personnel often assume all stomas are colostomies. But, of course, practices vary among the various types of ostomies.

  • A transverse colostomy cannot be managed by daily irrigations. The only colostomy that can be managed by irrigations is the descending or sigmoid colostomy. However, sigmoid or low colostomies do not have to be irrigated in order for them to function; many people with sigmoid colostomies prefer letting the stoma work as nature dictates. If you do not irrigate your colostomy, let the fact be known to your caregivers. If your physician orders your bowel cleared, irrigate your own colostomy; do not rely on others. There is a strong possibility that those caring for you will not know how to irrigate your colostomy.
  • Bring your own irrigation set to the hospital.
  • If you have an ileostomy or urinary diversion ostomy, never allow a stomal irrigation as a surgical or x-ray preparation.

Remember that laxatives or cathartics by mouth can be troublesome for people with colostomies. For people with ileostomies, they can be disastrous—people with ileostomies should always refuse them. A person with an ileostomy will have diarrhea, may become dehydrated and go into electrolyte imbalance. The only prep needed is to stop eating and drinking by midnight the night before surgery. An IV should be started the night before surgery to prevent dehydration.

Rule 4 – X-rays

X-rays present special problems for people with ostomies, again, differently managed according to ostomy type:

  • A person with a colostomy must never allow radiology technicians to introduce barium into your stoma with a rectal tube. It is too large and rigid. Take your irrigation set with you to x-ray and explain to the technicians that a soft rubber or plastic catheter F#26 or 28 should be used to enter the stoma. Put a transparent pouch on before going to x-ray. Have the technician or yourself place the rubber or plastic catheter into your stoma through the clear plastic pouch. When enough barium is in your large bowel for the x-ray, the rubber or plastic catheter can be withdrawn and the open end of the pouch closed. The pouch will then collect the barium as it is expelled and can be emptied neatly after the procedure. Once the x-rays are completed, irrigate normally to clean the remaining barium from your colon. This will prevent having to take laxatives by mouth after the procedure.
  • A person with an ileostomy may drink barium for an x-ray procedure, but never allow anyone to put barium into your stoma.
  • A person with a urostomy can have normal GI x-rays without any problems. Never allow anyone to put barium in your stoma. At times, dye may be injected through a soft plastic catheter into a urostomy for retrograde ureter and renal studies, often called an ileo-loop study. The same study may be performed on a urostomy patient with a Kock pouch. The dye will be injected via a large syringe; this can be a very painful procedure if the dye is not injected very slowly. Even 50 mL will create a great deal of pressure in the ureters and kidneys, if injected rapidly. Remember to request that the injection be done slowly.

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INFECTIONS IN UROSTOMIES

  (via Metro Maryland and Sterling, IL groups)

Have you ever had a urinary tract infection?
It can be most uncomfortable. You probably have no idea how you got it. Many urinary 

 

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MY DOCTOR SAID I HAVE A HERNIA 

Dr. R.B. Kelleck, Great Britain, Via Snohomish Insights  

The new ileostomate may find it difficult to believe that life without a colon can be completely healthy. To understand this, one needs to know what is the normal function of the colon or large bowel which has been removed. This organ is only found in land animals and its major function is to absorb water from the food residue. When animals first moved from the sea to the land they moved from a world where water was plentiful to one where it might be very scarce and they adapted to this by developing the colon as one means of avoiding dehydration. The only other substance that is absorbed from the colon is salt. All the other things we get from our food and which we need for energy and health are absorbed from the small intestine which is unaffected by the usual operations for ulcerative colitis. People with an ileostomy get just as much food - whether carbohydrates, fats or proteins - as anyone else. The other function of the colon is to act as a reservoir for the waste products of the body until there is a convenient moment for disposing of them. This function is simply taken over by the pouch whether external or internal.

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OSTOMY OBSERVATIONS

By Renard Narcaroti 

It is very common from our experience at the Chapter that when people come home after having ostomy surgery that there will be a brief period of grief and mourning. However, you should only have this feeling for a short period. . . it should only be temporary. As you once again return slowly to an active lifestyle, you will be transformed to the person you once were before the surgery or the disease/cir­cumstances that brought you to this point. If depres­sion lingers or is severe, this is not normal. You should see your doctor. He/she can help you with these feelings. Often they are caused by the shock of surgery to your system, the psychological adjustment to being well or a chemical imbalance. Your doctor has ways to help you so that you may be back to yourself once again.

If you have an ostomy, you should learn all you can about it, not only for your own sake, but also for the sake of setting a good example and being able to advise others with an ostomy. You will at sometime have the opportunity to educate someone about this life saving surgery and alleviate his/her fears. Never, ever, be embarrassed about having an ostomy. You will be amazed at how many people will truly admire your for the courage you show in adapting to the ostomy. Remember, there are very few, if any, people who never have any medical problems during their lifetimes.

While you are learning about your new life, know how to change your ostomy system. New people reg­ularly come to our meetings and tell us that they have someone else change their pouch. . . this always sur­prises us. This may be acceptable for a brief time, while one recuperates, and it is good for a family member to know how to change it in an emergency. Nevertheless, not to do it yourself is equivalent to a normal person not wanting to sit on the toilet and do his/her business by himself/herself. This habit needs to be changed in order to have a better quality-of-life and to adapt to changing circumstances, i.e., when nobody else is around.

Be proud of your ostomy. Do not act as if by own­ing an ostomy that you are less of a person or some­how a less complete person. You are just one of the sporty new front-end exhaust models.

Develop a support system of people you can count on to assist you with ostomy issues. Your ostomy nurse, your friends and relatives, and your local osto­my support group are proven ways that work. There are over a half-million of us in the United States, you are far from alone. Most importantly, we are very glad to be alive. For most of us, the alternatives for not choosing ostomy surgery would have resulted in our deaths.

Another observation from talking to our members is that we Americans seem to like to compete with ourselves to wear our ostomy systems as long as pos­sible. Why do we do this? There is no prize given for the longest wear time. We have one member who would wait until he had a leak before he changed his ostomy system. We vigorously tried to persuade him that it is better to have a regular routine, e.g., using the best practice of changing one's ostomy system every three to four days. Having one accident is so much worse than changing it at regular, responsible times that this should never even be considered an option.

The number one concern with people about to have ostomy surgery is odor, according to multiple surveys performed by ostomy nurses. Know this; we have less of a problem with odor than normal people do. Modem pouching systems are completely odor­proof when closed. Under clothing, people with ostomies absolutely have fewer parts exposed to make odors then normal people. Everybody creates some odors in the bathroom -- just like you and me.

Another observation published by recent medical studies is that we will stay healthier when we exer­cise regularly -- than means at least a half-hour every single day -- as long as this is safe for you to perform. We must also consume a low fat diet and drink at least 64 ounces of water a day. If you have an osto­my and do not drink enough water, you are asking for trouble.

Advances in surgery and drug therapy have pro­vided us an opportunity to experience a "second cha6ce" at life. If we lived in many other countries, or before WWII, we would probably be dead right now. However, we are not. We are alive and well. Be happy, you have been given a new life.

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  PREVENTING KIDNEY STONES

People who develop kidney stones are more likely to form more stones in the future. In fact, the chance of having a kidney stone if you've had one before is believed to be about 50%. So it's important for those who have had stones to take steps to prevent new ones from forming. 

                   Here are some suggestions:  

. Drink lots of fluid, particularly water. 

  Having lots of fluids dissolved substances in urine that can form crystals.

 . Drink cranberry juice. It can help lower the risk of UTIs, which can promote kidney stones. 

. Limit the amount of foods that are really high in protein, salt, certain kinds of calcium and oxalate, a substance found in leafy green vegetables, nuts, tea and chocolate. These are known to help stones form. There are also medicines available to help prevent stones. What works for one person might not work for another, so ask your doctor which solutions are best for you.

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TEMPORARY OSTOMIES  

by Nancy Brede, RN, ET, Via The Pouch, The New Outlook, Chicago


Temporary ostomies are surgically created with the intent of reconnecting in the future. The anatomy of the gastroin­testinal system or urinary system is left intact.

Permanent ostomies are created with the intent that the ostomy surgery will not be reversed - usually the anatomy in the gastrointestinal or urinary system has been removed. Permanent ostomy surgery is usually performed when dis­ease or injury prevents maintaining the anatomical struc­tures needed for reversal.

A large number of temporary ostomies involving the colon are done on an emergency basis. The colon becomes obstructed or blocked, and stool cannot pass through. Because of the emergency nature of the surgery, the bowel cannot be cleaned and prepared ahead of time. Reversals ­ re-anastomosis or hooking the normal anatomy backup - then can be done later, when infection is not as likely and proper healing can take place. The most common situations and diseases requiring a temporary colostomy are:

Cancer of the colon with obstruction - or other abdomi­nal cancer affecting the colon. Hirschsprung's disease, a disorder or malfunction in infants that prevents the passage of stool. Due to a lack of nerve cells in certain areas of the large intestine, stool is not moved through and an ostomy is necessary. Diverticulitis, a small out-pouching in the wall of the intestine, called diverticula, become infected. The diverticula may rupture or cause obstruction. Crohn's Disease may necessitate a temporary ostomy to allow the diseased bowel to heal.

Persons with temporary ostomies face many of the same problems permanent ostomates have. It's just as important for them to have support, reassurance, and teaching as it is for persons with permanent ostomies. They must learn proper skin care, stoma care, and pouching techniques. Often, stomas are not ideally situated on the abdomen, because of the urgency of the surgery. Thus, pouching and skin care can post difficult problems.

Following temporary surgery, measures need to be taken to improve the patient's health. He /she must be in the best condition physically. to undergo the major surgery for reconnection. There is also a time for the patient to deal psychologically with past surgery, upcoming surgery, and possibly a newly-diagnosed disease. It may be a difficult time with all the changes and new challenges. Often, there are many fears and unanswered questions. Other people with ostomies and ostomy nurses may provide reassurance and the answers to these questions.

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UROSTOMATES & FLUIDS

People with urinary diversion no longer have a storage area, a bladder, for urine.
Therefore urine should flow from the stoma as fast as the kidneys can make it.
In fact, if your urinary stoma has no drainage for even an hour, it is time for serious concern.
The distance from the stoma to the kidney is markedly reduced after urinary diversion surgery.
Any external bacteria have a short route to the kidneys.
Since kidney infection can occur rapidly and be devastating, prevention is essential.
Wearing clean appliances and frequent emptying are vital. Equally important is adequate fluid intake,
particularly fluids which acidify the urine and decrease problems of odor.
In warm weather, with increased activity, or with a fever, fluids should be increased to make up for body
losses due to perspiration and increased metabolism. It is important that you be aware of the symptoms
of a kidney infection: elevated temperature, chills; low back pain; cloudy, bloody urine; decreased urine output.

All ileal conduits normally produce mucus threads in the urine which give it a cloudy appearance.
Bloody urine is a danger signal. Thirst is a great index of fluid needs. If you are thirsty, drink up.
Also develop the habit of sampling every time you pass a drinking fountain.
Important - if urine is collected for urinalysis, called C&S, sterile specimen,
checking urine for infection, etc., be sure your doctor and nurse know that a sterile
specimen, must be taken directly from your stoma and not from the pouch
Bacteria builds up in the pouch immediately. It will give false test results .lf they are
not sure how to do this, do the following: remove your pouch; clean the stoma;
bend over; catch the urine in a sterile cup. If there is a slow flow of urine being expelled;
drink a glass or two of water - the kidneys will work. Urostomates who do not use a night
drain are running a big risk of puddling and the backing up of urine into the conduit up to the kidneys.
This may cause not only irritation but serious infection. . .
   

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VISITING A PATIENT WITH A TEMPORARY OSTOMY

by Muffy Truscott, Regina Ostomy Assoc

As a certified visitor with the local ostomy chapter, I have had many occasions over the years to visit patients who have just undergone surgery that left them with a temporary ostomy. Usually a temporary ostomy is done on an emergency basis, as the result of a blockage or obstruction in the colon. This may be the result of diverticulitis, colon cancer, inflammatory bowel disease or Crohn's disease, and the result is a temporary ostomy to allow the bowel to heal. The intent is to reconnect the bowel at a later time, and many patients are told by the attending physician to expect to have an ostomy for anywhere from three to nine months.

My first thought as I headed off to visit a patient with a temporary ostomy was that this would be a piece of cake, and the visit would involve lots of questions about management of the ostomy. I also figured that the patient would be greatly relieved knowing they would not have to deal with an ostomy on a permanent basis. Boy, was I wrong!

This particular patient was angry beyond all belief, upset with what had happened to her and definitely not prepared to deal with anything as disfiguring as a colostomy. To be sure, she wasn't angry with me, but the medical profession as a whole suffered her wrath and it was quite evident that the nursing staff gave her a wide berth. She was NOT going to like this ostomy thing! Not having encountered this kind of reaction before, I wasn't exactly sure how to proceed, but I found myself listening to her frustrations and empathizing with her situation. This calmed her somewhat and she told me that I was the first person who had not treated lightly her fears about the ostomy. She felt people did not take her seriously because hers was only a temporary situation.

The visit actually went fairly well after that and although she was still angry with many things, I left feeling that she would manage her colostomy quite well in the short period of time she would have it. It impressed upon me that people with temporary ostomies struggle with the same fears and anxieties that all of us who have permanent ostomies do. In addition to this, because the surgery is done on an emergency basis, they have absolutely no time to prepare themselves for the eventual outcome, the ostomy.

Do I sound like an all-knowing and understanding saint?? Well, I don't feel like one on some of these visits. In general, I find most persons who have just had surgery resulting in a temporary ostomy to be very upset and unusually angry. They just hadn't expected this! I am sympathetic, as mentioned before, but the thought also crosses my mind, "Deal with it!" Recently, I paid a visit to a woman who, after her emergency surgery, asked me how I could tolerate having a permanent ostomy! At that moment it seemed bizarre that I should be counseling her when I am the one who has to live with this thing on a full-time basis. She could look forward to a reversal. On the other hand, hard as it may sound, her comment actually helped me and I didn't have to hesitate a second for the answer. I know I cope with it because I wouldn't be here if it weren't for my surgery for colorectal cancer. I was 37 at the time and I suppose I had every reason to be angry but I wanted so desperately to live. The surgery and colostomy gave me a second chance at life, for which I am grateful.

I would like to be able to remind some of the people who have to live with temporary ostomies that their surgery likely saved their lives too, and that a few months is really not such a long time to live with an ostomy. But I also have to remember how very frightening this surgery is and how it is still considered such an awful thing to have an ostomy. Despite our attempts to educate the public about the normal lives we lead, who among us wouldn't choose not to have an ostomy? So I internalize my thoughts and sympathize and try to make the patient feel better about coping with their new situation. But a question still lingers: Why do some people marvel at their good fortune while others retreat into anger and disgust? We humans are a complex lot.  

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WHAT OSTOMATES SHOULD KNOW ABOUT DRUGS

Via St. Paul Pacesetter

Liquids are faster acting than pills or gel caps. The degree of compression of a tablet determines the rate that medicine is dissolved in one's system. Vitamins should be taken on a full stomach or else they will irritate the lining of the stomach and produce the sensation of feeling hungry. The amount of absorption is based on the amount of intestines still intact; therefore, the type of drugs taken must be in accordance with how much absorption "power" you have. Time-release capsules are NOT for the ileostomate. Time release medicine will completely dissolve at once if alcohol is consumed with it or shortly afterwards. Most medication is available in a variety of forms. Be sure to tell your pharmacist that you have an ostomy so he or she can provide the right form of prescribed medication. The following precautions are offered to avoid food and drug interactions that can reduce the effectiveness of prescription drugs.

. Don't mix medicine into hot beverages. Heat can destroy or alter drug ingredients.

. Don't stir medications into food which can destroy the release mechanism of certain drugs.

 . Real all directions, warnings and precautions about your medication.

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A LETTER FROM OUR CHAPTER PRESIDENT

The Philadelphia Ostomy Association and satellite support group the Abington Ostomy Support-Group are completely-voluntary organizations; none of our officers, board members or visitor's to new ostomates receive any remuneration for their time or efforts. Our mission to help in the psycho-social rehabilitation of ostomates of all types, will continue, unaffected by whatever happens to the national organization -- The United Ostomy Association of America

If you're an E.T. or W.O.C.N. Nurse. Social Worker. Medical Professional. Patient. or Family Member that wants to find the closest UOA Chapter in the Delaware Valley or provide a visit for an ostomy patient and you receive this newsletter, Call1.877.0STOMY2 for information.

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 HELP WANTED

Our chapter is in great need of people who are willing to volunteer some of their time to assist our Officers and Board of Directors in the tasks necessary in keeping our chapter functioning.  Many of these folks work full-time jobs and have families and other responsibilities, which also demand their time, and yet they continue to take on added responsibilities to keep the chapter going and to better serve you, our members.  Many of us have reached, or are rapidly approaching, the point of frustration.  Our Visitor Coordinator has already resigned.

Some of you have been approached at our meetings or by phone and asked if you would be willing to help us out, but we haven’t gotten many positive responses.  As a chapter with over 200 members, we do not want to have any more of our “workers” reach their “burn-out” point.  None of us want to see the chapter fold because there is no one willing to accept the responsibilities of keeping things going. Would you please give some serious thought to the support, information and friendships our chapter has provided for you, and consider stepping up and volunteering to take a more active role?  People are needed to help with the Visitors’ Program, the Help Hotline, programs for our meetings, and the Regional Conference being planned for November.

Contact any of the Officers or Board of Directors and let us know that we can count on your help.  Thank you!

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CHAPTER MEMBER DUES

THE PHILADELPHIA OSTOMY ASSOCIATION, INC.

P.O. BOX 14343

Philadelphia, PA  19115

Dear Chapter Member: 

It is time once again to renew your support to the Philadelphia Ostomy Association, Inc. Your dues help support all of our local activities, bi-Monthly meetings, the publication of  The Journal, our visitation program,  the state advocacy program and our website at: http://www.philaost.org.

Our dues as of 1/1/2013 are $20.00 a year.

I am asking for this minimum contribution. All of your contributions are tax deductible. 

For this small amount of money, you will be helping new and future ostomates as well as help our organization remain strong and viable.

Following the program, time is devoted to speaking with other ostomates or consulting with the professionals with any questions you may have.

In addition to attendance at meetings, there are other ways you can actively participate.  You may be interested in serving on one of our committees.  We invite you to contribute your special talents!

Local dues support the following services: 

                             -    Visitor Programs

-    The Journal  (our chapter newsletter)

-    Our Chapter Website,  http://www.philaost.org
     and  Journal Online

-    Educational and support group meetings –
    discussions about self-care, psycho-social
    issues, rap sessions and sharing of
    personal tips

-   Social events like our May Vendors’ Fair
and Stoma Clinic 

-   National Networks – Continent Diversion (CDN), GLO, Parents’ Network, Teens,
Young Adults (YAN) and 30 Plus 

Thank you very much for your participation and support.

Sincerely, 

Sheldon Sokol

President

Philadelphia Ostomy Association

                              

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