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Makeover for stoma clinic

The success of eastern India’s oldest stoma clinic, housed in the surgical gastroenterology department of Calcutta Medical College and Hospital, has prompted the authorities to introduce a few more facilities at the centre.

The clinic will soon offer counselling to patients and their families and also have modern equipment.

A stoma is a pouch placed on the abdominal wall of a patient to divert the stool or urine. The procedure is applied on patients who have to undergo extensive surgery.

“The stoma clinic has been a great success since 1997, when it was established. We have decided to upgrade it in order to provide value-added services to patients,” said head of the surgical gastroenterology department, Gautam Chatterjee.

The stoma clinic caters to outdoor patients on Tuesdays. The hospital authorities have decided to review indoor patients every day.

In order to ensure proper care, the hospital authorities have roped in an enterostomal therapist trained at Tata Memorial Hospital in Mumbai and an enterostomal therapy graduate from Mumbai.

Since the stoma pouch causes considerable disfigurement of the body and emotional stress on patients, the authorities have decided to counsel patients when they are advised surgery.

“We have often seen that patients face problems in the family. So, we have decided to counsel the family members as well,” Chatterjee added. “We explain to the patients what exactly is going to happen to them after the operation.”

Said Kalyani Das, enterostomal therapist nurse in-charge at the endoscopy unit: “Patients come to us from various spheres of society and we try to help them as best as we can.”

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