What Is An Ostomy?

A surgical procedure aimed at diverting bodily wastes away from natural excretory pathways is known as an ostomy. An ostomy is usually created on the GI tract or urinary system. This procedure results in a stoma appearing on the abdomen. A stoma is an opening through which urine or fecal materials pass out.

A stoma is a piece of the intestinal tract. Its edges are stitched to the abdominal skin. With no anal sphincters in the stoma, you are going to have to wear an ostomy bag over it to manage your waste evacuations.

Why would you need an ostomy?

There are several reasons you may need an ostomy. Some of those are the following.

  • Removal of tumor
  • Giving the lower intestinal tract some time to heal from a disease or injury
  • Nerve defects in the GI or urinary tract
  • Injury resulting in a permanent loss of a part of the GI or urinary tract
  • Need to remove the lower part of the GI tract due to inflammatory bowel disease

Types of ostomy

There are three types of ostomies.

  • Colostomy
  • Ileostomy
  • Urostomy

Let’s discuss these types one by one.


An ostomy created on the colon is known as a colostomy. The purpose of this procedure is to allow fecal materials to leave the body through the stoma after the diseased part of the colon is either removed or rested.

Because a significant amount of digestive procedure takes place before fecal materials enter the colon, a person with colostomy doesn’t face many digestive issues.

There are different types of colostomy, depending on the location of the stoma on the colon.

  • Ascending colostomy: An ascending colostomy is created on the ascending part of the colon. Because this part of the colon is so close to the small intestine, wastes passing out through it are more liquid.
  • Transverse colostomy: A colostomy on the transverse part of the colon is known as a transverse colostomy. It is located on the upper section of the colon. The consistency of fecal materials passing out depends on the distance between the small intestine and stoma.
  • Descending colostomy: A colostomy on the descending part of the colon is known as a descending colostomy. Since it is a distal colostomy, fecal materials passing out through it are semi-formed.
  • Sigmoid colostomy: A colostomy on the sigmoid part of the colon is known as a sigmoid colostomy. Because the stool passing out of this colostomy is firm, you can regulate your bowel movements.


An ostomy that diverts the end of the small intestine (ileum) away from the lower GI tract is called an ileostomy. It means that this ostomy bypasses the entire colon, resulting in the evacuation of more watery stools. Since the stool passing out of an ileostomy contains a lot of digestive enzymes, it can irritate the skin badly after coming in contact with it.

Depending on why you needed it, an ileostomy can be permanent or temporary.


An ostomy to divert the flow of urine away from the bladder is known as a urostomy. A typical urostomy uses a small piece of the ileum as a conduit to expel urine out of the body. A urostomy is likely a permanent ostomy. Your surgeon may choose to create a bladder out of your intestinal tissues. This bladder, however, doesn’t squeeze out urine.

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