May Newsletter 2017

Charlotte County Ostomy Support Group
A 501 (C) (3) nonprofit organization, (tax deductible

President Jerry Downs……. 629-7568…………
Vice Pres…Bonnie Coker 423-8542 Directors
Secretary: Lovelle Meester….637-8167
Lorelie Godbout: 603-474-9063
Treasurer: Karen Chalfant:…623-0088
Joan Huber………………….575-8708

Newsletter: Gloria Patmore & Karen Chalfant
Programs & Education: Jerry Downs, Penny Maki, RNET,CWS, 205-2620
Gloria Patmore, 627-9077
Nancy Frank RN,BSN,CWOCN, 629-5118,
Marie Michel RN,CWCA, CHRN,OMS 626-2606
Visitation: Penny Maki RNET, CWS & Nancy Frank BSN,CWOCN
Library: Karen Chalfant
Products Bonnie Coker
Professional Advisors:
John P. Rioux, MD, F.A.C.S.
Jill Lindsay, RN,BSN,CWOCN
Nancy Frank, RN,BSN,CWOCN; Marie Michel,RN,CWCA,CHRN,OMS

Next Meeting:

Tuesday MAY 9th  : 2:00 pm
Gables East 2nd floor alcove
South Port Square

23023 Westchester Blvd Port Charlotte

Program: SAFE & SIMPLE REP safe and simple

Chance raffle:

Olympia $10,Olympia-Rest1-300x182

Luigi’s one large 2 topping pizza


2 Subway sandwiches



May Newsletter for Charlotte County Ostomy Support Group

Getting prepared for our April speaker, Dr Marc Melser, became a real challenge. Must effort was needed to accomplish the viewing of a power point program he had prepared on Prostate Cancer, and the decisions your urologist must make for informed decisions on treatment. He was bringing a “thumb drive” with his power point program and we were to provide a screen, projector and a lap top to be used for the thumb drive. Your busy president, Jerry Downs volunteered that he did have a lap top, and Nancy Frank also has one so I, as coordinator of the effort, asked each to bring theirs. Well Nancy decided to borrow equipment from her hospital (Fawcett) but found it unavailable, so she ran home and picked up her personal lap top. In the meantime Jerry was busy with Kim and other members in Marketing at South Port Square trying to get the projector hooked up to view Dr Melser’s program.laptop_and_projector

The projector ended up quitting on us, so the diligent crew in marketing came up with another plan. They put a TV in use to accept the program, and moved everything to our meeting room. When Nancy arrived her efforts were very much needed. Dr Melser’s thumb drive was inserted and she quickly had the information on the screen! This was an amazing bit of teamwork! South Port’s audio visual team were also helping along the way!

Marc Melser M.D. Diplomate, the American Board of Urology, Fellow of American College of Surgeons, a urologist with a Division of 21st Century Oncology Inc, has been a staunch supporter of our group for many years, and has contributed to us by taking an ad in our newsletter. He has a busy urology practice treating diseases of the prostate and bladder, kidney stones, urinary incontinence and erectile dysfunction. His office is located in the Harbor Professional Center 3410 Tamiami Trail Suite#4 in Port Charlotte. Everything was up and running almost as soon as he arrived, and the extensive preparation that had taken place was no where in evidence!

newsDr Melser talked about Prostate Bio-Markers. “We have next generation sequencing”. For men with truly advanced prostate cancer who have failed first line therapy it is not a good place to be. There have been some new drugs that have come on the market that have truly made a difference. And there is the imaging modality, There has been the CT scan and the bone scan for many years, routinely done to check for prostate cancer. Newer agents have been found that will pick up metastatic disease at an earlier level. It can be ordered with the ease of a chest XRay. Hopefully tests can be ordered without having to fill out extensive paper work in order to do it. The US preventative task force came about in the past few years . The US preventative task force has been formed. We want to be able to identify the patient with clinically significant prostate cancer. The standard biopsy test doesn’t give full information since the cancer can be missed. We want to be able to identify the man with significant prostate cancer. It can be missed on a biopsy.

Prostate cancer markers : There are 4 main clinical scenarios.

Scenario 1: Identify men with significant prostate cancer. 2: Marker #2 Identify the man who has been re biopsied to find his cancer. Should active therapy or surveillance be used? Does every man have to be radiated? No we don’t think so. For those who have had the prostate removed decisions need to be made as to just observe, or be actively treated. After prostate removal, markers should drop down to zero.

There has been a reversal in the trend to detect and treat prostate cancer. Men become alarmed and are too frequently having prostate cancer removal when it is not needed. With the surgery the person will now have poor bladder control and impotency to deal with. The chance that you will have prostate cancer is really low. It is sufficient to be tested each year and not more often.

There is a PCA3 urine test comparable to the PSA that has a lower sensitivity. When a biopsy has not found cancer in the prostate, wait 4-6 months before repeating the test. Many aspects enter into the picture when your urologist chooses to consider the course to follow when looking to diagnose prostate cancer.

Dr Melser explained well the bio markers considered when making decisions to treat prostate cancer. 22 Biomarkers are followed specific to prostate cancer that are utilized. The Decisions need to be made such as: “do you really need treatment?”. Many factors are involved in that decision and removal of the prostate should not be taken lightly since it is a life changing scenario.Biomarkers-247x179

Many factors are to be taken into consideration before removal is considered. Be sure you go to an experienced urologist if your family doctor brings into the picture that you have abnormal prostate numbers. Genetic testing is available. Decisions need to be made as to just observe and follow or to remove the prostate and all available information needs to be utilized. When the prostate has been removed tests should read 0

Although Dr Melser did have much more information in his talk, I hope I have given you some information from him that you have found interesting.


Colostomy management

A colostomate has options to be considered in management. Irrigation is a procedure that has been used by Colostomates through the years. You need to have the approval of your physician before trying this route. If your bowel movements throughout your life have been fairly regular and you are NOT on chemotherapy, this procedure can make a big difference in your life. When your surgery has removed your anus and you have most of your large colon it is similar to an enema. A cone is used rather than a thin rectal tube that prevents inserting it too far. You should be taught the procedure by your Ostomy nurse. I emphasize it is not for everyone, but a joy for those able to go this route. It is very individual. Your president, Jerry, found it was the perfect way for him.

SeniorsDayIf you are new to life as an ostomate you need to know there are several types of stomas in our group.

A colostomate has had his opening into the large colon. Since digestion has taken place before the stool is excreted the stool will eventually return to normal, depending on how close to the anus the surgery has been done. This is not the case for the Ileostomate. With an opening into the Ileum the stool is more liquid and contains digestive enzymes. Here skin protection is an absolute must!

The enzymes will literally digest skin that is contact with it. The job of the large intestine is to absorb water and digestive enzymes. With the colon removed proper skin protection is a must.

Proper fitting for an ileostomate is important. Immediately after surgery the stoma is enlarged. It does shrink fairly quickly and needs to be watched for making the opening smaller and maintaining a proper fit for the needed skin protection. There are many choices of equipment available, and it can become overwhelming in making a selection. The appliance you are wearing as you leave the hospital may be right for you, but if you have skin irritation and suffer from leakage, you need help. Don’t hesitate to call on Nancy Frank or Marie Michel. Don’t suffer with sore skin!

We have several Manufacturers of equipment that have recently presented their newest products. We have seen Hollister and Convatec and will see Safe and Simple next month.

We have several Urostomates in our group. Stan Meester is usually available to answer your questions since he has had his for many years. Equipment available for the urostomates includes wafers that don’t readily disintegrate with moisture, pouches that do not reflux leaving urine on the skin, and pouches with outlets that are easily drained into a large collection bottle for the night.


1) Put toilet paper in the bowl when emptying the pouch. It prevents splashing.hints-tips

2) At each pouch change check your stoma for color, shape, size, and function.

3) It isn’t necessary to scrub your stoma clean. ( Keep in mind that before the surgery that piece of intestine was exposed to feces 100% of the time. Bathing or showering without the pouch is a great idea. It is good for the skin and the stoma. Just be sure to use a soap with no cold cream in it. Water running over the stoma is no problem as long as it isn’t a shower massage.

4) 4 Having an ostomy doesn’t prevent you from enjoying swimming. Either “picture frame” your wafer with waterproof tape , or waterproof your tape with a skin prep preparation.

5) Stomas have no feeling, and therefore injury can occur without you knowing. A faceplate shifting, too small an opening, improper centering of the opening, could cause injury. A cut stoma will bleed, and swell! Contact your ostomy nurse or physician in case of injury, and be prepared to use a larger opening until you heal. Your support Group exists to give you the help you need

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