A Kock Pouch is a viable option for those who must have their colons removed due to inflammatory bowel diseases, trauma or cancer. But how does the device actually work? And how hard is it to empty? Here’s a look at the mechanics of the Kock Pouch.
A Kock Pouch is created using your own intestines. After your colon is removed, a reservoir made from small intestine tissue. The reservoir is connected to your small intestine on one end and a stoma, or opening in the skin, on the other. The stoma is usually placed just above the pubic area. Waste accumulates in the reservoir which you empty several times per day.
There is no external bag with this ileostomy option. You insert a thin catheter into the stoma and empty the reservoir into a toilet. The process isn’t difficult, but it may take you several weeks to become comfortable emptying the pouch.
How often you should empty the reservoir depends on your unique body and diet, but there are some general guidelines. Immediately following surgery, you will have an indwelling catheter that provides constant drainage. The indwelling catheter will be left in place for about a month while the pouch “matures.” After your surgeon removes the catheter, you will drain the pouch several times each day. As time goes by, you can empty the pouch less often.
After the indwelling catheter is removed, you’ll need to start emptying the pouch several times per day as instructed by your surgeon. In the weeks after the indwelling catheter is removed, you’ll need to:
As time goes on, you’ll be able to go longer between pouch empties. You may be able to stop the constant drainage overnight at some point. Within three months of surgery, you should be able to empty the pouch between four and six times per day. If you feel bloated or distended, you’ll need to empty you pouch. You should also empty the pouch prior to physical activity.
When inserting the catheter into the pouch, remember the following: