(Urinary Diversion Surgery)
by Deanna M. Neff, MPH
An ostomy makes an opening in the belly wall. A urostomy allows urine to pass to a bag outside of the body. An internal pouch can also be created using the intestine.
Once healed, a urostomy shouldn’t limit your activities.
Reasons for Procedure
A urostomy is needed if urine can’t pass through the urinary system as normal. You may need one because of:
Problems from the procedure are rare, but all procedures have some risk. Your doctor will review possible problems such as:
Before your procedure, talk to your doctor about ways to manage factors that may increase your risk of problems such as:
What to Expect
Prior to Procedure
Your doctor may do:
You may also need to:
General anesthesia will block pain and keep you asleep.
Description of the Procedure
An incision is made in the belly to access the area. There are several ways to create a new path for the urine to flow. Your doctor will discuss the options with you.
Most methods require a stoma. A stoma is an opening made through the belly wall. A small section of small or large intestine will be removed. It will be used to make a path between the ureters and the stoma. Ureters are tubes that carry urine from the kidneys to the bladder. There are 2 main types:
A third type, called a neobladder, doesn’t need a stoma. A pouch is made from the small intestine. The ureters and urethra (the tube that carries urine out of the body) are connected to it much like the original bladder. Urine can then pass from the body like it did with the bladder.
The incisions are closed with stitches and bandaged.
Immediately After Procedure
The healthcare staff will watch vital signs while you wake up.
How Long Will It Take?
About 2-5 hours.
How Much Will It Hurt?
Anesthesia will prevent pain during surgery. Medicines will help ease pain after.
Average Hospital Stay
You will be in the hospital for a few days. You may need to stay longer if you have problems.
At the Hospital
The healthcare staff will help you:
During your stay, the healthcare staff will take steps to lower your chance of infection such as:
There are also steps you can take to lower your chance of infection such as:
When you return home:
Call Your Doctor
Call your doctor if any of these occur:
If you think you have an emergency, call for emergency medical services right away.
American Cancer Society
United Ostomy Associations of America
Canadian Cancer Society
Bladder cancer. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at: http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T115106/Bladder-cancer . Updated May 31, 2017. Accessed June 15, 2018.
Urostomy guide. United Ostomy Associations of America website. Available at: https://www.ostomy.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/UrostomyGuide.pdf. Accessed June 15, 2018.
Last reviewed May 2018 by EBSCO Medical Review Board Adrienne Carmack, MD
Last Updated: 6/15/2018
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