At United Ostomy Associations of America, we have developed comprehensive resources for ostomates that may also be applicable for patients living with Crohn’s disease:
Ostomy Tips and Tricks (Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation partnership with UOAA)
The American Gastroenterological Association (AGA), in conjunction with other communities, has developed the IBD Parenthood Project as a resource for women living with IBD who are looking to get pregnant and have children. Please refer to this resource in conjunction with our Pregnancy while living with Crohn’s and an Ostomy section.
In order to keep up with Crohn’s disease management, it may be important to consider certain testing and vaccines on a routine basis. The Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation has developed checklists for adults and children living with IBD on maintaining their overall health, which may be useful for patients to discuss with their doctors: Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation Health Maintenance Checklists.
COVID-19 Related Resources for IBD Patients & Ostomates
United Ostomy Associations of America, in conjunction with many other GI societies, has developed position statements regarding risk of COVID-19 in IBD patient populations and their stance on vaccinations for the IBD patient community: COVID 19 and Ostomy.
It is important to note that IBD patients are not at increased risk for contracting COVID-19 versus the general population. There are, however, additional considerations for IBD patients based on the immune-suppressing medications (particularly, steroids) that they may be taking and/or if they have other underlying comorbidities which may be placing IBD patients in a higher risk category.
It’s also important to understand that not having a colon or rectum does not negatively affect the immune system, nor does it increase one’s risk for contracting COVID-19. This includes the J-Pouch, or IPAA set of procedures, as well as ostomy surgery: Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation’s COVID-19 Guidance on Ostomies & J-Pouches
The Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation recommends the COVID-19 vaccine to IBD patients in general and has also put forward a Position Statement on an Additional Dose (Booster) of the COVID-19 Vaccine for IBD patients to consider.
For specific questions regarding your particular situation, please reach out to your gastroenterologist for additional guidance.
Questions to Ask Your Colorectal Surgeon & Ostomy Nurse
Before ostomy surgery, there are many questions you and your loved ones may have about what is an ostomy and how it works. Download our FREE guide to help guide you through this process.
Written by Tina Aswani Omprakash. Medically reviewed and validated by Jordan Axelrad, MD, MPH. These webpages are funded by a grant from The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust.