As someone who has battled irritable bowel disease for more than 18 years, Jessica was treated at many hospitals, by many doctors. Her disease eventually brought her to Ohio State Wexner Medical Center, where a temporary ostomy saved her life after medications had failed to keep her in remission. They didn’t just care for me physically, but care about my emotional well-being as well,” shares Jessica.
Ostomy is the surgical creation of an opening from an internal structure within the body to the outside of the body that can be temporary or permanent.
It is estimated that up to 400 patients annually will require a surgery at Ohio State Wexner Medical Center that will result in the patient needing a gastrointestinal ostomy bag. The emotional burden of dealing with an ostomy can be devastating, as patients face incredible changes in body image, self-esteem, sexuality and quality of life. Often patients express fear, concern, worry and embarrassment regarding their ostomies, but may not have adequate support to handle these feelings.