Why is a Colostomy Needed for Patients With Severe Bed Sores?

By Bed Sore FAQ

Colostomy

In cases involving severe bed sores (also referred to as: pressure sores, decubitus ulcers or pressure ulcers) on the buttocks or sacrum, a physician may recommend a surgical procedure to prevent fecal material getting into the wounds. The surgical procedure is referred to as a ‘colostomy’ or ‘diverting colostomy’.

A colostomy is a major surgical procedure that involves cutting the colon into a shorter piece and bringing it through the wall of the abdomen. A colostomy bag is attached to the end of the colon exiting the abdomen where fecal material is collected. The end of the colon that leads to the rectum is closed off and becomes dormant. Many colostomy procedures can be reversed, if and when they are no longer needed.

While the thought of a colostomy may be disheartening, for many people suffering from severe bed sores it is likely an essential part of the overall healing process. Without a colostomy, many bed sore patients suffer from a systemic infection know as septicemia or sepsis.

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