Dear OncoLink "Ask The Experts,"
I am a hospice nurse working with an elderly patient who has excessive mucous from his stoma for over a year, and which causes erosion of the stoma seal. He has to change the seal several times a day. He is very active and is disgusted with this problem. He also has mucous from the rectum, which soils his pants. Is there any medication that will reduce the mucous; does he possibly have a C. difficile infection, and could you suggest the best supplies that will not break down around the stoma site? His surgeon said this problem will probably last forever, and I would like to figure out some solutions.
Ave Preston, MSN, RN, CWOCN, Ostomy Nurse Specialist at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, responds:
I would suggest an evaluation by an Ostomy Nurse Specialist to see if there is a different pouching system that would get a better seal. Several manufacturers make skin barriers with extended wear barriers which may hold up better and/or he may benefit from a convex skin barrier pouching system and belt to help the stoma protrude more into the pouch. Unfortunately, I am not familiar with meds that would decrease mucus production.
See this previous question about rectal mucus after colostomy.