Stoma complications: the Cook County Hospital experience

Dis Colon Rectum. 1999 Dec;42(12):1575-80. doi: 10.1007/BF02236210.


Purpose: A retrospective analysis of enteric stomas performed at Cook County Hospital was undertaken to evaluate stoma complications per stoma type and configuration and operating service. In addition, we attempted to identify factors predictive of increased enteric stoma complications.

Methods: From 1976 to 1995, data cards on 1,616 patients with stomas were compiled by Cook County Hospital enteric stomal therapists. Data card information included age, gender, weight, early and late stoma complications, emergency status, operating service, type and configuration of the stoma, and whether the patient was seen preoperatively by an enteric stomal therapist. Data were then analyzed using a logistic regression model to identify those variables that influenced the rate of complications.

Results: There were 553 (34 percent) patients with complications. Among the total complications, 448 (28 percent) occurred early (<1 month postoperative), and 105 (6 percent) occurred late (>1 month). The most common early complications were skin irritation (12 percent), pain associated with poor stoma location (7 percent), and partial necrosis (5 percent). The most common late complications were skin irritation (6 percent), prolapse (2 percent), and stenosis (2 percent). The enteric stoma with the most complications was the loop ileostomy (75 percent). The enteric stoma with the least complications was the end transverse colostomy (6 percent). The general surgery service had the most complications (47 percent), followed by gynecology (44 percent), surgical oncology (37 percent), colorectal (32 percent), pediatric surgery (29 percent), and trauma (25 percent). Age, operating service, enteric stoma type and configuration, and preoperative enteric stomal therapist marking were found to be variables that influenced stoma complications.

Conclusions: Complications from enteric stoma construction are common. Preoperative enteric stoma site marking, especially in older patients, and avoiding the ileostomy, particularly in the loop configuration, can help minimize complications.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Body Weight
  • Chicago
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Colostomy / adverse effects*
  • Colostomy / classification
  • Colostomy / methods
  • Constriction, Pathologic / etiology
  • Evaluation Studies as Topic
  • Exanthema / etiology
  • Female
  • Forecasting
  • Humans
  • Ileostomy / adverse effects*
  • Ileostomy / classification
  • Ileostomy / methods
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Necrosis
  • Pain, Postoperative / etiology
  • Prolapse
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Sex Factors
  • Time Factors