How To Avoid Ostomy Pancaking

Pancaking is when a vacuum occurs in the stoma bag and the bag sticks together, preventing the contents from dropping to the bottom. This happens most frequently with ileostomies and colostomies. When it does occur, waste remains as a pancake-like mass at the top of the bag, which can potentially block the filter, and the bag also can be forced off the body.

Pancaking often occurs when the output is thicker than usual and it can back up very quickly with nowhere to go. With a colostomy, pancaking is more likely to occur than an ileostomy because the stool is thicker. How does one manage this occurrence?

The United Ostomy Association of America, Inc. suggests tips to prevent pancaking from occurring. It may be surprising just how simple techniques such as wearing loose fitting pants, sampling new bags, air flow and diet can help solve pancaking problems.

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