Friday, May 11, 2007

Talkin' 'Bout Stomas

So, I got to follow the wound ostomy nurse this week and had my first real moment of queasiness as an SN (student nurse). The wound care nurse taught two patients about taking care of their ostomies. The first stoma we saw was for draining urine. The patient had a bladder cystectomy and the stoma was little and-despite its neighbor on the abdomen being a long surgical scar-was kind of cute. It looked like a small pink scrunchy. The patient asked, "Do people name their stomas?" I was the only one who laughed. The next stoma was for a transverse colostomy. It was of a size somewhere between baseball and infant's head. It mushroomed out from a smaller base. It was (despite all my book larnin' on the issue) not pink, but a veritable rainbow of, sorry, icky colors: bleeding red, necrotic gray, black and a brown that wouldn't have been unpleasant were it not surrounded by the other colors. This stoma needed a name. It took a trek all over the hospital to find a flange that would fit around The Stoma.

It's been a tough week. My strep throat came back and now I'm on scary antibiotics. The kind that says on the warning label "Take only in case of SERIOUS infection." with implied skull and crossbones peppering the container. Crud.

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