Sponsored By
Norbert Sparrow

July 29, 2016

2 Min Read
Ostomy patients: You’ve got a brand new bag

Unless you have to wear one, or know someone who does, you probably haven’t given much thought to colostomy bag design. The pouches collect waste that has been redirected from the colon or bladder through an opening in the stomach. It's a topic that typically does not come up in polite conversation: “People do not want to talk about poop, stool or gas,” writes Feza Remzi, MD, Chairman of the Department of Colorectal Surgery at the Cleveland Clinic, in the organization’s Health Essentials. Not so for Stephanie Monty, a recent graduate of Brunel University (London): She has designed a colostomy bag for “intimate moments.”

Source: dezeen.

The less obtrusive and more appealing design is available with tattoo- and lingerie-inspired patterns that are embossed on the device’s silicone cover, writes architecture and design magazine dezeen. The flexible, waterproof device has a natural feel and can be color matched to the patient’s skin.

Aesthetics are not a consideration in the design of conventional colostomy bags. Moreover, they are often uncomfortable and may cause skin infections. Monty’s design includes an anti-bacterial flange to protect the user from inflammation and infection and contains vents to allow the release of gas while containing odors, writes dezeen.

Monty was inspired to design the product by her own family’s struggle with Crohn’s disease, a condition that causes inflammation of the lining of the digestive tract. The inflammation often spreads deep into the layers of affected bowel tissue. There is no known cure.

According to the United Ostomy Associations of America, approximately one million people in the United States alone have an ostomy, the surgically created opening in the body that allows waste to be eliminated. There has been a growing movement to remove some of the stigma associated with wearing a colostomy bag. Famously, a picture of aspiring model Bethany Townsend posing in a bikini with her colostomy bags on her Facebook page in June 2014 went viral.

Monty’s pouch was displayed at the 2016 New Designers exhibition in London, and she is now looking for collaborators and investors to take the device beyond the prototype stage.

About the Author(s)

Norbert Sparrow

Editor in chief of PlasticsToday since 2015, Norbert Sparrow has more than 30 years of editorial experience in business-to-business media. He studied journalism at the Centre Universitaire d'Etudes du Journalisme in Strasbourg, France, where he earned a master's degree.


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