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A Journal on Surgery

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Minerva Chirurgica 2004 February;59(1):23-30

language: English

Quality of life in patients with an ileostomy

Scarpa M., Barollo M., Polese L., Keighley M. R. B.


Aim. Temporary or permanent ileostomy is a common procedure in colorectal surgery. Our aim was to assess the impact of ileostomy on quality of life and the relevant risk factors.
Methods. A 33-question questionnaire was sent, by mail, to 74 patients (over 70, between 70 and 50 and under 50 y old). The questionnaire explored 5 parameters of function: systemic symptoms, bowel symptoms, functional impairment, social impairment and emotional impairment. Further questions investigated the need for a nurse or relative to assist with management of the stoma, the frequency of changing the bag and the appliance, diet and the ability of patients to attend their normal daily activity.
Results. Thirty-four patients completed the questionnaire. The final quality of life score was similar for all the 3 age groups but elderly patients needed more assistance in the stoma management. The quality of life scores in males patients were significantly better than in females. No statistically significant difference was observed comparing loop ileostomy versus end ileostomy and Crohn's disease versus ulcerative colitis.
Conclusion. Quality of life is not influenced by age, underlying inflammatory disease or type of ileostomy. Males report less impact on quality of life than women.

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