The Easy Attach

Topics in This Section

Background:

Sandra Cochran, BSN RN CWOCN is a full-time certified wound, ostomy, and continence nurse at Fox Chase Cancer Center, Philadelphia, PA. She developed the idea of the "The Easy Attach" after caring for many urostomates who had difficulty using the night bag adapter.

From 2007 to present, Fox Chase surgeons have performed 131 cystectomies (removal of the bladder) when a urostomy (incontinent diversion requiring an external appliance) was the diversion of choice. Statistics show ~ 75-80% of patients undergoing cystectomies nationwide receive a conduit/urostomy, a large percentage for this patient clientele. Patients who underwent cystectomy and are now using an external urine collector for the night voiced frustration when using the night bag adapter.

The most extreme case involved a patient who suffered from severe arthritis of both hands and was unable to detach the urostomy pouch from the night bag. For this reason, he thought he was unable to leave his home and experienced severe depression following surgery.

Description:

When patients with bladder cancer undergo cystectomy, they need an external urine collection appliance to manage the continuous drainage of effluent (urine). At night or any period of extended time in the supine position they are expected to be attached to a larger bag that will provide a bigger reservoir to pull the urine away from the stoma and reduce kidney infection. They plug their night bag into an adapter that is then attached to the end of a night drainage container. This adapter is made from thin pieces of plastic and it breaks easily with usage, causing frustration to the patient and costing ~ $6 a piece to replace.

Additionally, the adapter is particularly difficult to use if the patient suffers from weakness, carpal tunnel, rheumatoid arthritis, neuropathy, stroke, amputation of any fingers or hand, multiple sclerosis, and aging. Alternative adapters often times do not provide a tight seal and easily become disconnected during the night causing wetness, discomfort, breakdown of skin, loss of sleep time, and may not be made of latex free materials exposing the patient to possible allergens.

"The Easy Attach" has been developed to be a universal adapter that can be interchangeable among the different urostomy pouches available on the market, and enables patients to choose the urostomy pouch appropriate to their specific needs. Currently, each urostomy pouch is sold with its own adapter, either packaged with the pouch or sold separately. Switching from one pouch brand to another frequently occurs when the patient needs to use an appliance that best fits individual needs.

Advantages:

  • Interchangeable among the different urostomy pouches currently on the market
  • Cost effective, packaged and sold separately
  • Resistant and durable connector made of a sturdier latex-free plastic
  • Easy to handle and operate
  • May prove effective in reducing contortion on the night drainage bag
  • Caps or plugs permanently attached to avoid misplacing or loss
  • Extra length of tubing attached to the night bag connector providing additional length to the existing drainage bag

Patent Status:

U.S. Patent Application pending