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Life with bowel cancer


single stoma handling both outputs

I am seeing a urologist on Tuesday prior to surgery and may be offered a choice.

I think the choice will be between a single stoma handling solids and liquid outputs or two separate stomas.

I already have managed a loop ileostomy for 8 months and my instinctive reaction would be to favour two separate bags as my worst fear is accidents and I suspect handling both outputs - even in a single bigger bag - would increase the likelihood of leaks and accidents.

I guess the disadvantages of two bags are cosmetic and more frequent visits to the loo for emptying.

Does anyone have any real-life experience of managing two bags or a single bag handling both outputs like this ?

Thanks - Andy


I do not -- but I have know / read about a few ppl who have, including my grandad many years ago ..

I think you might get more response if you post this question on the IA site ..

From what I recall reading in there in the past -- my understanding is that the urine-thing is the hardest stoma to live with cos it is so WET and thus likely to get under the flange and irriate your skin -- which it is liable to do, being so acidic ..

I also think the urine one can be tapped out to a bottle by your bed for draining in the night, to allow for better sleep without having to get up to empty it ... I dunno if you could achieve that with a combined output?

My personal feeling based on that would be to keep them seperate, but obviously it adds another level of daily chore to the bag routines and makes feeling sexy a bit more of a challenge, and you are going to be very compromised in that department anyway :-\

How common is that dual output solution? You might have to hit Google and take the rough with the smooth in terms of what you have to read to get informed opinion on this issue

all the best,


Re. the dual output idea ... do they propose to take a line from your urinary tract to your bowel and then out through the stoma?

another thing that would worry me it the risk of fistulas, I would certainly research that a bit more ..

Happy S

Sorry this is a bit late and I hope you are doing well. Check out http://www.living-with-a-stoma.co.uk/index.html Jean, the lady that runs the site, has had two stomas since 1995 -a colostomy and a urostomy. I guess she's well qualified to give you some advice. I have an ileostomy so can't add anything from personal experience.

Best wishes 


hi Happy s thanks for that and welcome to the forum!


Hi Andy, have you thought about contacting your stoma nurse and asking her to put you in touch with someone in your area who has personal knowledge of either or both alternatives. Speaking on the phone or even better face to face with someone who has experience, is surely the best way to make up your mind.

Hope you sort things out in a way you are happy with and do let us know what you decide and perhaps later post about how you are finding things, we are lacking in this sort of experience on our forum.

Best wishes, Alison