I think you can ease your concerns about life, in general, with a long-term ostomy.
There are several individuals on the UOAA form (United Ostomy Association of America) who have had a permanent end-ileostomy for 40+ years. These are individuals who, for example, had Chrons' disease and Ulcerative Colitis as children/teenagers and who had surgery to remove all of their large intestine/anal sphincters. There are several active posters on the UOAA forum who have had ostomies for 40+ years - without significant skin issues or other.
I have had my ileostomy for 5 years. I have a very fair skin complexion. I have also been on long-term corticosteroids (generally damaging to one's skin integrity). I have had no adverse skin issues. None.
I do use a one-piece system, the Coloplast Mio, and change my pouching system daily. I take a "naked shower" every morning and give my paristomal skin time in the open air. It feels great to take a shower and let the paristomal skin breath. The Coloplast Mio has a unique wafer composite that combines both the traditional hydrocolloid matrix with a blend of elastic polymers. The result is a wafer that is thin, pliable, and dynamic. The wafer adheres intimately to the skin surface, minimizing skin trauma seen in rigid wafer systems. All to say: Be mindful in selecting your ostomy products; request samples from different manufacturers in order to find the best/optimal pouching and wafer system for you.
When removing a wafer, push the wafer away from the skin using your fingertips. Do not pull the wafer away from the skin in a lifting up and off slight of hand. Pulling the wafer away from the skin causes micro-trauma to the outermost skin layers. Pushing the wafer away from the skin, using the fingertips to push the wafer from the skin in small increments, is infinitely more skin friendly. The manner of technique does matter when removing an ostomy wafer from the skin.
Use of Cavilon Liquid Skin Protectant (by 3M) is a daily part of my skin routine. A light spritz. Cavailon® is a favored product among most/many ileostomates.
You can live a long life with an ostomy . . . . adverse skin issues are more the exception than the rule.
- Karen -
Dear friend to Bella Piazza, former Colon Club member (NWGirl).
I have a permanent ileostomy and offer advice on living with an ostomy - in loving remembrance of Bella
I am on Palliative Care for broad endocrine failure + Addison's disease + osteonecrosis of both hips/jaw + immunosuppression. I live a simple life due to frail health.