November 2023 Newsletter

Newsletter for November 2023


President: Jerry Downs 941-629-7568
Vice President: Ken Aukett 609-315-8115
Secretary: Lovelle Meester 612-240-2175
Treasurer: Lorelie Godbout 603-474-9063
Directors: Janice Creutzmann 910-382-2509
David Sandora 941-828-1076


Newsletter: Lorelie Godbout
Programs & Education: Jerry Downs,
Gloria Patmore, RNET (retired) 941-627-3077
Nancy Frank, RN, BSN, CWOCN 941-629-5118
Marie Michel, RN, CWCA, CHRN, OMS 941-626-2607
Visitation: Nancy Frank, RN, BSN, CWOCN
Library: Lorelie Godbout, RN (retired)

Professional Advisors:

John P. Rioux, MD, F.A.C.S.
Nancy Frank, RN, BSN, CWOCN
Marie Michel, RN, CWCA, CHRN, OM

A 501 (C) (3) nonprofit organization, (tax-deductible donations) Website




November 14, 2023

Happy Veterans Day & Thanksgiving!

Our next meeting will be on November 14, 2023, at 2:00 PM, CHARLOTTE COMMUNITY FOUNDATION, THE VIRGINIA B. ANDES TRAINING AND EDUCATION CENTER, at 227 SULLIVAN ST, PUNTA GORDA, FL 33950  941-637-0077


IF YOU ARE USING A GPS, ENTER  227 Sullivan Street, Punta Gorda, Florida 33950.   This is the address of the Charlotte Community Foundation building. where the Ostomy Support Group will be meeting.

IF YOU ARE DRIVING SOUTH to the address above:  
Go south on Hwy 41 S, over the Peace River bridge. Get in the LEFT LANE before leaving the bridge.  When the highway widens and there is an added Left Lane, move to that lane as soon as you can. At the intersection of the SECOND STOP LIGHT, turn LEFT onto OLYMPIA AVE. Almost immediately, turn LEFT again onto SULLIVAN, and immediately on the RIGHT is the entrance to a large parking lot for Public Parking. There are signs distinguishing Private Parking from Public Parking.  Use Public Parking. There is no charge. On your LEFT is a smaller lot you can use that is adjacent to the Community Foundation building where the meeting will be held. There will also be Ostomy Support Group signs for further help. 

IF YOU ARE DRIVING NORTH to the address above:
Go north on Hwy 41 N, get in the LEFT LANE, and turn LEFT onto Marion Ave.
Then, in approximately two blocks, turn LEFT onto SULLIVAN St. There may not be a street sign at this intersection.  At the far end of Sullivan on the LEFT is a large parking lot with signs that distinguish Private Parking from Public Parking. Use Public Parking. There is no charge. On your RIGHT is a smaller lot you can use that is adjacent to the Community Foundation Building where the meeting will be held.  There will also be Ostomy Support Group signs for further help. 

Sad news–Stanley Meester passed away on September 15 from injuries he received in the car accident. He was a fellow ostomat. His wife Lovelle, is at Select Specialty Hospital in Fort Myers and once she is able to leave the hospital her family would like her to go home to Minnesota for the rest of her rehab. She is our secretary, but I don’t think she will be coming back.

I know it has been a few years since we have had any formal meetings, but now we have a great place to go and we should be starting our regular meetings back up. Kenneth Aukett, Joan Huber, Karen Chalfant, and Myself (Lorelie Godbout) went to our first meeting on September 12. We caught up on things happening and our travels through the years. Ken did his presentation for us at the UOAA annual conference he attended in Houston, Texas last August. He was able to show pictures from the conference with the projector that is provided for our meetings if we need it. He showed us the leaders that set up this conference and the many vendors with all kinds of different products, stealth belts, tapes, and Stomagenie, which seems pretty nice when you are changing your pouch to keep the area clean and dry while preparing the area. There was a stoma clinic for people to go to with problems. There were sessions for pediatric patients, young adults, and couples. Topics were set at similar times to avoid cross-overs of different groups. There was a walk-through inflatable colon for education purposes to learn about different diseases and cancers of the colon. That was very interesting to see.

Following articles from UOAA E-Mail

Ask the Ostomy Nurse Linda Coulter

Linda Coulter has been a Certified Wound Ostomy & Continence Nurse for 10 years. In addition to working with hundreds of people with stomas, she has trained several WOC nursing students at the R.B. Turnbull Jr. School of WOC Nursing. Linda has presented nationally and internationally on ostomy-related topics. From her home base at University Hospitals’ Ahuja Medical Center, Linda is active in raising Ostomy Awareness and works to distribute ostomy supplies to people in need throughout the world.

What’s the Best Baseplate?

What is the best convex baseplate to use for a flush stoma that actually goes below my skin when it’s active? I have had two ostomy surgeries and the problem won’t go away. I can’t get a good seal no matter what brand of barrier ring I try. I am pretty thin, but should I still be able to get a good seal?


Dear M.T.,

Thank you for your question. Yes, you should still be able to get a good seal and convexity can be part of the answer. Convexity can help provide a better pouch seal and overall pouching experience in many circumstances. However, there is a variety of convex baseplate options, soft, firm, deep, shallow, and more. Not every convex option works in every situation or for every person. The firmness of the abdominal tissue and the contour surrounding the stoma help to determine the best baseplates to use.

Your situation includes a flush/retracting stoma and a thin abdomen. In my experience, thin abdomens usually are firm to semi-soft, and peristomal contour tends to be flat. I would recommend using a shallow, firm to lightly flexible baseplate. Pouches that fit this description include, in alphabetical order: Coloplast Mio Soft Convex or Convex Light, Coloplast Sensura Convex Light, Convatec Esteem+ Flex, Hollister Convex and Marlen UltraMax or Ultra-lite shallow convex. Most of these companies offer both one and two-piece pouching options. The companies are happy to provide samples of their products and you can request these from their websites. You can also call their toll-free phone numbers and speak with a representative, who can help you obtain samples that best fit your stoma and abdomen.

To further help improve your seal, add a thin/slim barrier ring and a snug stoma belt to your convex pouching system. The combination of a convex pouch, barrier ring, and belt does wonders to help improve pouch seal and wear time. You can get samples of rings and belts from the manufacturers as well.

For readers who don’t share your specific stoma situation, I’ll provide a bit more information. In general, a more firm and deep convex baseplate will work for a softer abdomen, especially if the contour around the stoma is concave. For these cases, the products to try include Convatec SurFit Natura Convex-It baseplates, Coloplast Mio Deep convex systems, and Marlen deep convex products. Again, combining these pouches with a snug belt and a barrier ring can greatly improve the pouching experience.

M.T., I hope the information above leads you and others to better pouching outcomes.



Chris Seyler joined the Phoenix (Arizona) Ostomy Support Groups during COVID times and met up with the group at a park ostomy meeting. Recovering from long-term illness and recent surgery, he was ready to find his way back to normal life.

Chris was born in the Phoenix area. While growing up his parents taught him to be active in a team sport, exercise, and stay away from bad habits in life. Chris played basketball and ran track, being nominated for all-state in both sports. Receiving a basketball scholarship, and motivated by teachers and coaches, Chris majored in Kinesiology and Science from The Master’s University and became a teacher.

While in college Chris met his wife Colleen, also a teacher. Their son, Nathan, shares his parents’ passion for teaching and athletics and was selected to be in a Disney-running movie, MacFarland, USA. Father-son teamed up to coach school teams in Track and Basketball, winning state Championships.

Following his passion, and inspired by his son, Chris started competing in more events. From 2003 to 2017 he competed in 5ks, 10ks, half and full marathons, triathlons, Ironman, and obstacle racing. It was after AZ IRONMAN 2013 that Chris was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis and started losing weight in 2017. The next couple of years were tough; in and out of the hospitals for nutrition and dehydration and battling a bacterium in his colon. Various medications and infusions did not help with easing the illness and emergency surgery was performed in 2019. Weak from illness and surgery Chris retired from his full-time teaching job and put his running shoes aside.


As time went on and recovery was underway, Chris set a goal to run a 5k. Not able to keep up with his wife, she encouraged him to walk, jog, and run. Hydration was always important as part of Chris’ race, but not having a colon taught him he had to be even more diligent about it. During Run for Resilience Ostomy 5k 2021, Colleen ran the race. Chris walked and rested with his dog…but he finished…and his passion was returning! While training he worked on improving balance and strength and was able to jog/run at the Arizona Run for Resilience Ostomy 5k in 2022. Chris will be participating this year on the Arizona Virtual Race Team as part of the 2023 Run for Resilience Virtual Ostomy 5k on October 7th.

Passionate about life after ostomy surgery; Chris is teaching part-time, is the Phoenix Ostomy Group Secretary, and is the Meeting Leader at HH Cowden Center ostomy meetings.

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