Can You Make Pregnancy Work with an Ostomy?

One of the most important things is your life is getting pregnant. It is considered to be extremely memorable. You might have heard of the usual pregnancy stories about the importance of care. Having an ostomy could leave you worried about your fate. However, there is no need to stress as having an ostomy is not as horrible as it seems. You can still get pregnant and make it work.

The truth is that undergoing surgery for an ostomy does not impact your fertility in most cases. But, it does not mean that you can avoid birth control if you do not want to raise a family. It is vital that you speak with your doctor about which birth control should be used. Keep in mind that some birth control pills would simply pass through the ostomy before getting digested. A risk that needs to be mentioned is the removal of the rectum which could lead to scar tissue forming and blocking the fallopian tubes which would make it difficult to conceive. Now, it does not mean that you have become infertile. It only refers to the wall getting in your way.

Scientific advancements have made it possible to get pregnant despite the challenges. Consult with a doctor to ease your fears. They will let you know that an ostomy does not impact reproductive organs. As for those of you who have ostomy due to FAP (Familial Adenomatous Polyposis), it is possible for your child to inherit it and require surgery. Similarly, inflammatory bowel disease is also considered to be partially genetic which is why it is best to get in touch with your doctor to determine a concrete link. Even though you can experience a normal pregnancy, it is best to feel great and deliver a healthy baby while countering potential ostomy-related complications as mentioned below.

  • Kidney Infections: People with a urostomy are more likely to suffer from a kidney infection. However, one must drink sufficient fluids to maintain good hydration.
  • Blockages: As babies make movements in your uterus and as it grows throughout pregnancy, there is a risk of the uterus pinching the intestines and causing blockages. Diet and chewing can prove helpful. However, you must let your doctor know if a blockage does occur.
  • Discomfort: As your abdomen grows to make way for the baby, you are likely to experience pain and discomfort. But, it would not cause any harm to the baby.
  • Stomas Change Size/ Shape: With your abdomen growing, the stoma might also change shape or grow. If there is leakage, you might want to opt for flexible base plates.

Labour and Delivery

Generally, one can give birth vaginally. However, everyone is unique and their medical history varies. Thus, you might require a c-section. Since a hernia can develop, you should speak with your doctor to prevent it. You will need to change your ostomy pouch after you have given birth. Let the hospital where you plan on delivering your baby know about your ostomy for the best outcome.