Stomach bug and ostomy

Stomach bugs and ileostomies

DON’T WAIT!! That’s my general advice on the subject of stomach bugs and ileostomies, don’t wait to see a doctor. If you’ve been ill for more than a day or so with vomiting/diarrhoea/stomach pain, call the doctor!!!

Obviously I don’t follow my own advice and so I’m kind of writing this to my future self as a reminder to not be a dick. I think I’m superwoman when I get ill, I think I’ll just power through it.  I tend to think that 5 surgeries haven’t toppled me so I’ll be damned if a belly ache will!

Which is stupid.

If you don’t have a colon, it’s best to not fuck about with these things.  We can get very quickly dehydrated which is not something to mess with. What is a bit of a nasty bug for a person with a functioning gastrointestinal tract can be quite devastating for those of us missing parts of the bowel.

On Wednesday I was working in town and feeling a little queasy but ok, then I quite quickly got very hot, very tired and my stomach hurt.  I was in a coffee shop and felt wetness on my legs, I thought I’d knocked my coffee over but looked down and realised that my bag had leaked. It had filled to bursting in minutes and had leaked down the back of the seal.  Not good.

Woman with ostomy bag

Post lunch, Pre bag blow out

So I came home and felt grotty for a couple of days, I had terrible diarrhoea and tummy pain and felt really run down. But still I powered through and managed to work from home.

On Saturday my symptoms seemed to ease a little and so Timm and I went to the cinema, by the end of the day I felt really queasy. I knew it must be bad as I couldn’t even finish my wine!

By Sunday night I was crying in pain, my bag was filling with water around once an hour, anything I drank seemed to go straight through me. I had gotten myself dehydrated and I felt sick as a dog.  I was shaking, hot and felt like I was going to pass out. I thought I was going to need to go to A&E and I was pissed off. I felt stupid for letting it get to this point, my feelings of not wanting to overreact were ending up in more trouble.

Thankfully my stomach calmed enough for me to get some sleep but this morning I knew I needed to see a doctor. I called in sick to work (which I HATE doing) and got an appointment at the GP. One good thing of having an ostomy is that it terrifies the doctor receptionist! One mention of the bag tends to get me straight in!

I saw the doctor this morning who got me straight in for blood tests and a stool sample (another positive of an ostomy bag! Easy access to poop!) and has got me straight onto Cipro antibiotics with strict orders to rehydrate and rest.

I usually use Diaralyte but I’m trying the chemist own brand today along with a strawberry flavoured one called ORS which actually taste really nice so these may be my rehydration go to from now on!

Ciprofloxacin antibiotics


I wish I’d gone to see the doctor last week when things weren’t so dire. I’m waiting back on the results he says he’ll rush through now to see if I’ll need any further treatment.  If I end up back in hospital I’m going to be fuming with myself.

Often we are scared to seek medical advice because we don’t want to cause a fuss, we worry that it’s not that big a deal but please if you’re struggling with a stomach bug/stomach flu/gastroenteritis or general vomiting and diarrhoea and you have an ostomy, jpouch, missing bowel, please don’t wait.  Get medical advice as soon as you can.

I’m on bed rest today and hope I’ll feel better soon, till then I’ll snuggle back down with my ridiculously cute Lemmy.  Timm caught us this morning in full on chronic illness cuddle mode…


Stomach bug and ostomy


Sam xxx

6 replies
  1. Lara
    Lara says:

    I needed to read this. Thank you. My husband has a j-pouch and this is the first time he’s had a bug with vomiting and diarrhea, all I can think about is dehydration. It hasn’t even been a day and I’ve already put a call into the GI nurse. As I anxiously wait for a call back, I found your post. So thank you again for sharing and for being a bad ass.

  2. Christine lee
    Christine lee says:

    Thanks so much for this Was dithering about ‘troubling ‘ the Docters. You summed up my feelings exactly Will call gp now

  3. Jo
    Jo says:

    Thank you for your funny way of writing something serious. I sit here in tears reading as it’s so true. The trouble is I’ve been poorly for a week, green water filling bag regularly, to the doctors twice and as I don’t seem that bad im just told to go to hospital if it gets worse! Trying to be brave and not worrying anyone I’ve kept at home drinking pints of water! But I will go to hospital today. Thank you X

  4. Dave
    Dave says:

    Good reading, had same nightmare this weekend but went to ER and they kept me for couple days with IV fluids but still feeling drained. Bummer was they nailed me with two CT scans because they thought it was blockage and I thought it was bug. Scary getting all that radiation for simple bug but IV fluids helped big time.

  5. Ann
    Ann says:

    My first explosion was in a transport ambulance escorting someone to hospital I was mortified saw big roll of blue roll started rolling loads to try absorbe all fluids on floor me but was not successful told the driver what had happened he was very kind and said hospital about 5min I dashed out car told my relative I will find the clinic they were attending I came from the WC leaving underwater in bin then approached redemption to ask if they had clothes shop as it was a big hospital no she said but I could get a bus and go 2stops and pick up change of clothing did not sit on bus got off and there was a charity shop I could only find one top one skirt asked for a carrier bag that’s 5 pence and handed bag in changing cubicle were I put soiled clothes got back to hospital ask receptionist wat area was cardiologist she smiled at my attire which I responded you can laugh I know it don’t match but you have to get on with what you got lol got to area the patient was in with doctor so I knocked and walked in they burst out laughing I have never seen this person we both found it very funny explained to the consultant my embarrassment who joined in laughter .i have had accidents since I worry about dehydration more than mess


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