The Pacesetter is the newsletter of the St. Paul Ostomy Association, PO Box 75365, St. Paul, MN
VOLUME 15, ISSUE 3 Editor: Patti Herubin JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2011
From the Board . . .
New Year’s Greetings!
We are starting off 2011 with two special guests for our January and February meet-
Special points of ings. On January 15th, we will welcome Heath Tille of Coloplast, who will speak about
Coloplast’s ostomy products, services, and solutions. On February 19th, Maureen
Nagle, Dietitian, will join us to cover many dietary issues of interest to ostomates. Don’t
• January meeting:
miss these interesting, educational programs!
Thanks for a great turnout at our meetings in September, October, November, and De-
• February meeting: cember (which was festive, with a BIG assortment of food)! Members and guests have
February 19th been very active in their attendance and contributions at our meetings. We have had great
rap sessions and speakers, which has been so beneficial for those with questions and issues
• Our email address:
to discuss and tips to share. We rely on YOU to bring up your concerns, hopes, and
firstname.lastname@example.org thoughts so others can learn. Your presence makes a difference!
All the best to you for happiness and good health in the new year!
Patti Herubin, President
Don’t forget to mark your calendars for the UOAA
3rd National Conference that will be held in Reno
Nevada, August 7-11, 2011. We KNOW that it will
Inside this issue:
be a wonderful time, full of educational workshops,
Conference notice 1 along with some fabulous social events. I would like
to strongly ENCOURAGE all who can attend to do
Chapter meetings 2
so and I promise you will have an amazing time. Reg-
Advertising rates 3
istration information will be available on the UOAA
website, www.ostomy.org, after January 1, 2011.
Ostomy Resources 6
- Dave Rudzin, President, UOAA
Renew Membership 7
Board Members 8 Disclaimer:
Please do not follow any medical advice in this newsletter without
first checking with your physician or WOCN.
PAGE 2 THE PACESETTER
~ ST. PAUL OSTOMY ASSOCIATION ~ STILLWATER SATELLITE ~ CHISAGO CITY SATELLITE
September through May September through May Year-Round
3rd Saturday of each month— 1st Saturday of each month— 1st Thursday of each month—
next mtg. January 15th next mtg. January 8th next mtg. January 6th
10 a.m.–12 noon at 10 a.m.–12 noon at 6 p.m.–8 p.m. at
Faith United Methodist Church Stillwater Senior Community Fairview Chisago Lakes Clinic (Board
1530 Oakdale Ave., W. St. Paul Center Room)
Contact: Eileen Bohrer, 2300 Orleans St., Stillwater 11725 Stinson Ave., Chisago City,
651.455.6467 Contact: Dallas Zimmerman, Contact: Diane Linngren,
(various sources; via Niagara Frontier Ostomy Association)
• Save money by making your own elastic belts for holding • If you spring a leak while wearing your best “dry clean
your irrigation sleeve or pouch. Save the end attachment only” winter whites, get them to the cleaners quickly. Ex-
from the old worn-out belt and transfer to the new elastic. plain the nature of the stain. You can help educate the
• A cup of buttermilk in irrigation water can help control public and you have the best chance of getting the stain
odor. out if you “come clean” as to what caused it.
• If you irrigate, try adding about 1/4 cup of Vaseline Inten- • If you find the scissors sticky when you cut Stomahesive
sive Care Bath Beads into the irrigation sleeve when you wafers, lubricate the scissors with KY jelly or clean the
are cleaning it. Rinse with clear water. Odors will be gone blades with rubbing alcohol.
and fecal matter will slip out easily. • Try using one of those small seam rippers (available in
• Watering cans with long, curved spouts are excellent for any fabric store) for cutting the size you need from
rinsing reusable pouches. Stomahesive. It is quick and gives a nice smooth
• If you notice a persistent odor after changing your pouch edge...but be careful.
and you wear an open-ended pouch, check to see if you • Be careful with zippers. They can get caught in a pouch
have cleaned the tail piece properly. It isn’t necessary to when zipped in a hurry.
clean the inside of a pouch (it is acting like the inside of • Be careful with what you place in your pockets. Ballpoint
your colon, which you don’t clean), but the end of the tail pens, keys, nail files, toothpicks, and any other sharp ob-
flap is exposed to the outside and will cause odor if fecal jects could puncture the pouch.
material is not removed. A careful swipe with a piece of • Before you leave for travel abroad, call Intermedic, Inc.,
tissue will do the trick. in New York City at 212-486-8974. They can provide you
• Always carry an extra pouch and an extra closure clip for with names of English-speaking doctors abroad.
emergencies. Check it periodically to make sure that it is • Apple juice every morning or night helps relieve constipa-
not showing wear and tear. tion.
• When traveling, carry a collapsible plastic cup for water, a • Use a toilet paper cylinder to keep the irrigation sleeve
packet of tissues, and a small plastic bag for any other un- open to allow drying after use and prevent mildew.
foreseen need. • Use a round clothespin to roll up a paste tube, thus help-
• Check your stoma whenever you change your pouch. You ing to get all the paste out.
want to make sure that you catch any possible problems • If you find that your stoma gurgles a lot, try eating the
early. Look for changes in color, shape, or function. Also, solid food first at mealtimes and then drink your bever-
look around the stoma for changes in the skin. age.
• Remember, do not avoid fluids altogether.
VOLUME 15, ISSUE 3 PAGE 3
⅛ pg $75.00
¼ pg $100.00
½ pg $150.00
For more information call Eileen Bohrer:
Is it time to renew your membership? Your annual
dues of $15.00 help us provide chapter services, pro-
vide you with membership in the UOAA, and cover
costs of The Pacesetter. Checks should be made pay-
able to St. Paul Ostomy Association and mailed to
P.O. Box 75365, St. Paul, MN 55175.
Improvising...or Fixing a Leak in a Hurry
via The Right Connection & Southern Nevada’s Town Karaya
If you do “spring a leak,” especially when away from home, it can be a cause of panic. Being prepared can help you keep
your cool. Wearing an pouch cover provides extra protection. One person noted that when he had a leak near the seal, he
was able to stuff several folded tissues between the pouch and cover. This absorbed the leakage and kept him going for 90
minutes until he was able to get back home and change.
A pouch cover has the advantage of soaking up perspiration on a hot day. Perspiration can quickly
undermine the best adhesives. A good ostomy powder can help soak up moisture too. Lacking this,
corn starch or baby powder is equally effective. Some people always carry Band-Aids with them. She pouch
said she used the tape to mend a small tear in the pouch. It worked so well that she forgot about the cover provides
makeshift repair until her regular time to change pouches! extra protection.”
One ileostomate told about his pouch filling with gas while he was hurrying to catch a plane, and he
didn’t have time to stop in the restroom. He used a pin to poke a hole in the top of his pouch. By press-
ing his arm against his body, he was able to avoid an emergency until he could safely use the restroom on the plane.
Another ileostomate told about using a disposable diaper to wrap around her appliance. It kept her safe until she could get
home and change. Individually packaged alcohol wipes or towelettes are easily carried and are great helpers in cleaning up an
emergency. Best of all, though, take precautions to try to avoid having an emergency.
PAGE 4 THE PACESETTER
Ileostomies and the Immune System
By David Beck, MD, Ochsner Clinic, New Orleans
In response to a query about the possible side effects of
ileostomy surgery on the immune system, Dr. Beck noted
that the surgery, by itself, should have no long-term effect
on the immune system. Although there is some transient
reduction in a patient’s immune system response right af-
ter major surgery, this usually returns to normal in a cou-
ple of days. However, the diseases that cause patients to
need a stoma (such as inflammatory bowel disease), the
medications used to treat the diseases (such as steroids), or
malnutrition associated with the disease may all affect the
If you are concerned, there are several tests a doctor can
perform to test your immune system. One of these in-
volves placing chemicals or allergens into the skin to see
how the body responds. Others involve blood tests. We
are continually learning more about the human immune
system from our experience with HIV infections. Most
efforts are directed toward identifying and then treating
the cause of the immune dysfunction. Although good nu-
trition and some supplements (such as vitamins) are neces-
sary for the immune system to work, little has been proven
to improve immune function.
Thanks to Ostomy Outlook, North Central, OK,
via Rosebud Review, Eau Claire, WI
Young Ostomate & Diversion Alliance of America
(YODAA), which is under the umbrella of UOAA, is a
great resource and provides education and information for
young adult ostomates (18-35). Check out the discussion
forums at www.yodaa.org!
The Mystery of Electrolytes…
Gatorade or V-8 Juice
About Fistulas By Liz O’Connor, RN, CWOCN—Metro Maryland
Thanks to Mayo Clinic Newsletter Ostomy Association and Youth Group
What is an anal fistula? Is there a cure? A fistula is an ab- A prior newsletter article recommended Gatorade (like
normal, tubular connection between two organs or between the athletes drink between quarters of a game) for main-
an internal organ and the outside surface of the body. An taining electrolyte balance for ostomy patients. Metro
anal fistula is commonly a passage between the anal canal Maryland recently received a letter from a member who
and the skin near the anus. It’s usually the result of an had relocated to North Carolina. He had done some re-
anorectal abscess that drains through the skin. The cause of search on the matter and found that V-8 Juice has a higher
such an abscess may be an infection that began within the amount of both sodium and potassium. So which is better
anal canal or rectum, or even from a more distant location for the ostomy patient who is experiencing diarrhea or
in the small or large intestine as a result of inflammatory excessive perspiration?
bowel disease (IBD), such as Crohn’s disease or ulcerative It seemed wise to consult a dietitian on this matter. She
colitis. Treatment may include surgical drainage of the ab- explained that technically the patient is correct, but the
scess and antibiotics. If the problem is a complication of advantages of Gatorade are that it is almost immedi-
IBD, treatment of the underlying condition usually is neces-
sary to resolve the problem and prevent recurrence. (Continued on page 5)
VOLUME 15, ISSUE 3 PAGE 5
(Continued from page 4) Skin Sealant—Do You Always Need it?
Highlife, Vancouver, British Columbia
ately absorbed by the intestine due to its high osmolality.
You should try applying your pouch without this
The sugar content provides a quicker boost of sodium and
product a few times to see if you really need it. Some
potassium. The sugar content provides a quick increase in
people get excellent wear time without using sealant.
energy. If an ostomy patient (especially one with an ileo-
Others may find it improves skin health and pouch ad-
stomy) has diarrhea, this is the product of choice. It is bet-
hesion. Skin sealants such as Skin-Prep by Smith &
ter to pour the Gatorade over ice and sip it. Do not gulp it
Nephew, Skin Gel Wipes by Hollister, Allkare by Con-
or you reduce its effectiveness.
vaTec, and Bard Skincare Protective Film are available
If you know that you run low in sodium and potassium,
in different forms, such as small wipes, sprays, or appli-
V-8 juice can also be used for a longer-term result. It is
wise to consult your physician if you have frequent
These products contain a plastering agent as their
problems with electrolyte imbalance. Follow his or her
main ingredient and are used to provide a thin protec-
directions. If you have an ileostomy and are vomiting re-
tive film on the skin surface. This film helps prevent
peatedly, get medical advice immediately. Otherwise, you
injury to the surface layer of the skin during appliance
might end up needing IV fluids. Normally, eating a well-
removal. It also acts as a moisture barrier. For people
balanced diet with an average amount of salt is sufficient.
with dry skin, the film actually improves appliance adhe-
Episodes of diarrhea or excessive perspiration in the heat
can catch one off guard. It is wise to have some Gatorade
Skin sealants also contain variable amounts of isopro-
on hand. A few bottles of V-8 juice on your pantry shelf
pyl alcohol, so burning and stinging often occur when
might come in handy, too!
the sealant is applied to damaged skin. Therefore, skin
Editor’s Note: For those with short bowel syndrome, eating raw/
barrier powder should be used rather than a skin sealant
cooked fruits and veggies is not always the best, so keep several small
on irritated skin. It is also important to know that skin
cans of V-8 juice handy to drink instead of eating a serving of vegeta-
sealants may not be recommended for use under
bles. You might even take one to a restaurant when you know the
certain skin barriers. The protective agents may
only vegetable being served is “al dente” broccoli.
reduce the adherence of the barrier.
PAGE 6 THE PACESETTER
Things You Really Always Wanted to Know
About Toilet Paper
Are all sheets the same size? This is important. The
size of a sheet of toilet paper may vary from one manufac-
turer to another. The standard is 4.5” x 4.5”. However, in
the last ten years manufacturers have come out with
“cheater sheets.” These can run as small as 4” x 3.8”! This
means about 15% less paper. So don’t be confused by the
advertisement that says “our roll is the cheapest.” It may
be that theirs has fewer sheets and smaller size sheets.
How many sheets are on a roll? Traditionally, indus-
trial rolls of toilet paper have 1,000 per roll of one ply and
500 per roll of two ply. Recently, manufacturers are mak-
ing jumbo size rolls with 2,000 sheets. These require spe-
cial large dispensers and are good for
public-use bathrooms because they last
longer. However, the consumer market
has many different size rolls. Some rolls
only have 200 sheets! Some of the sheets
are smaller than the standard industrial
size of 4.5” x 4.5”. I’ve seen sheets as small as 4” x 3.8”.
Be careful. Small rolls have to be changed more often and
generally do not cost less. Don’t get fooled!
More Toilet Paper Trivia
The first loo paper was used in Britain in 1857. It was
called “curl papers” and came in flat packs. Chemists
The Phoenix magazine is published quarterly— (druggists) sold it from under the counter because people
March, June, September, and December. were embarrassed to see it displayed. Toilet rolls were first
sold in 1928. Soft paper was introduced in 1932 but was
unpopular at first. In 1957, colored paper was first used.
Romans never ran out of toilet paper! They used a piece
of sponge fixed onto a short wooden handle. In front of
the loo was a water channel to “dip the stick.” Some peo-
OSTOMY RESOURCES ple think that this is where the expression “wrong end of
the stick” comes from. By the middle of the nineteenth
Here is a list of phone numbers for Ostomy supply century, the chamber pot and the outhouse were still the
manufacturers. Most will provide FREE samples. only choices for the rich or poor in the large cities of
Europe and America.
COLOPLAST .........................888.726.7872 Source: The Toilet Paper Encyclopedia via The Road Runner of
CYMED ..................................800.582.0707 Marshmallows...An Ileostomate’s Best Friend
Kem Enterprises - Ostomy Association of Houston, TX
Eat a couple of marshmallows up to 30 minutes before
Osto-EZ-Vent™...............888.562.8802 changing your pouch. One ostomates says, “I eat a couple
HOLLISTER ..........................800.232.4060 of marshmallows just as I go into the shower, which takes
me 10 to 15 minutes to complete….” Another tip is to
MARLEN ................................216.292.7060 put an ice cube in a thin washcloth and circle the stoma
NU HOPE ..............................800.899.5017 for about 20 seconds. This will shock the stoma into de-
laying output for awhile.
VOLUME 15, ISSUE 3 PAGE 7
L I T TL E L A R RY.. .
A new teacher was trying to make Larry’s kindergarten class was on a Little Larry attended a horse auc-
use of her psychology courses. She field trip to their local police station tion with his father. He watched as
started her class by saying, where they saw pictures tacked to a his father moved from horse to
“Everyone who thinks they’re stupid, bulletin board of the 10 most wanted horse, running his hands up and
stand up!” After a few seconds, Little criminals. One of the youngsters down the horse's legs and rump, and
Larry stood up. The teacher said, pointed to a picture and asked if it chest. After a few minutes, Larry
“Do you think you’re stupid, Larry?” really was the photo of a wanted per- asked, “Dad, why are you doing
“No, ma’am, but I hate to see you son. “Yes,” said the policeman. “The that?” His father replied, “Because
standing there all by yourself!” detectives want very badly to capture when I’m buying horses, I have to
… him.” Larry asked, “Why didn’t you make sure that they are healthy and
The math teacher saw that Larry keep him when you took his pic- in good shape before I buy. Larry,
wasn’t paying attention in class. She ture?” looking worried, said, “Dad, I think
called on him and said, “Larry! What the UPS guy wants to buy Mom ....”
are 2 and 4 and 28 and 44?” Larry
quickly replied, “NBC, FOX, ESPN
and the Cartoon Network!”
Renew Your Membership in the St. Paul Ostomy Association
Please renew your membership or join our organization now to continue receiving this newsletter.
Membership dues are $15.00 annually (January-December) and include membership in the UOAA.
For questions regarding membership status or dues billing, contact Connie Parizek, Treasurer, at
651.645.6224. If you are not yet a member of our group, we encourage you to join and share in our
Please enroll me as a member of the St. Paul Ostomy Association: Renewal ______ New Member ______
Street ________________________________ City __________________________ State ____ ZIP ________
Phone ________________________________ Email: _______________________________________
I have a: Colostomy____ Ileostomy____ Urostomy (ileal diversion)____ I do not have an ostomy _____
Amount Enclosed: $ _______ Membership dues for January-December 2011
Make check payable to St. Paul Ostomy Association and mail to P.O. Box 75365, St. Paul, MN 55175
St. Paul Ostomy Association Non-Profit Org
P.O. Box 75365 U.S. POSTAGE PAID
St. Paul, MN 55175 St. Paul, MN
Permit # 2422
Address Service Requested
St. Paul Ostomy Association Board of Directors
President/Publications/Web Chairperson: Patti Herubin 651.788.6707
Vice President: Lynn Byrne, 763.213.9238
Secretary: Jaime Masanz 651.336.2187
Treasurer/Membership Chairperson: Connie Parizek 651.645.6224
Telephone Chairperson: Helen Gerten 651.306.0520
Refreshments Co-Chairpersons: Gloria Bjorkman 651.636.0785 and Connie Parizek 651.645.6224
Ostomy Products Co-Chairpersons: Bev and Gene Stilwell 651.482.0933
Visitation Coordinator: Gloria Bjorkman 651.636.0785
Program Chairperson: Eileen Bohrer 651.455.6467
Outreach Chairperson: Eileen Bohrer 651.455.6467 W E’ RE ON THE WEB!
WWW. OSTOMYASSOCIATIONOFSTPAUL. ORG
Meeting Greeter: Gene G.