Low Rectal Cancer
Enema Equipment for Rectal Cancer Bowel Management
The Standard enema bag can be purchased at many big box pharmacies. It consists of a combination hot water bottle/enema/douche assembly. There are two nozzles that can be used for douching or an enema. This is the equipment that was in the bathroom of most homes in the 60’s. The equipment is inexpensive (less than $20). Because it is possible to experiment with the use of enemas for bowel management, you may want to use the standard pharmacy generic equipment before committing to the more expensive equipment needed for a proper bowel management program.
The standard enema bag that is readily available will not work for a daily enema for bowel management. To be successful, you need to take the daily enema while standing up in the shower. You must have equipment that allows you to have both hands free to shower in the normal manner. The standard enema rectal or douche tip is rigid and must be held in place. There is a risk of puncturing the rectal wall with a rigid tip. In addition, the standard tip requires you to squeeze your anal muscles to keep the tip and prevent water from escaping out of the anus as water fill the colon.
Of equal importance, you must have a way of monitoring the sanitary condition of the equipment. You should be able to visually confirm that there is no mould or bacteria growing in the bag or tubing. To see any bacterial growth, the enema bag and the tubing should be transparent. The equipment needed for a successful bowel management program has to be purchased through a medical supply house or over the Internet.
The enema bag
The primary piece of equipment is the enema bag. The bag must have adequate capacity (two quarts) to flood the transverse and descending colon. The bag also has to be transparent so that you can confirm that there is no bacterial growth. Unfortunately there seems to be only one enema bag that is commercially available over the Internet that meets these criteria. The bag is manufactured by a company called Klystra. This 4 quart silicone bag is quite expensive ($150) but should last a lifetime. You can do a Goggle search on "Klystra Enema" to find sellers. Be prepared that most sites that sell enema equipment are for erotic use and not for health.
Tubing connects the bag to the nozzle. Clear silicon tubing is the best for bowel management for the same reason as listed above. It is important to confirm that there is no bacteria or mould buildup in the tubing. The tubing is expensive costing $24 for a 6 foot section of 5/16" translucent silicone tubing. You can Goggle for "silicon enema tubing".
The Inflatable nozzle
The critical component of a bowel management program is the correct nozzle. The medical term for the nozzle is a "Enema Continence Catheter". and has been proven to be successful for "colonic washout" To be able to do an enema while taking a shower without having to hold in the nozzle, an inflatable single balloon nozzle is required. These nozzles are quite expensive ($120). They are made from a gum latex material that seem to have only about a years lifespan. The nozzle also has one very important safety feature, it cannot puncture the wall of the rectum like a rigid nozzle.
A search on the Internet will find many inflatable balloon retention nozzles. The only one that I have found that seems to be acceptable for daily use is from a site name of "Beth Tyler". There are double balloon nozzles that have a balloon that inflate on the outside the anus as well as another balloon that can be inflated inside the rectum. These nozzles have two inflation bulbs and are more difficult to insert and unnecessary for a daily program. There are nozzles that are made of silicon. However, all of the silicon nozzles that I have found have a very large volume once expanded. The nozzle that is shown in the figures is the one that I use and found to be acceptable. It can be obtained from a site called "Beth Tyler" but may be available at other sites.
One Way Control Valve
The biggest risk of contamination is water flowing from your colon back into the enema bag or tubing. The best way to prevent backflow is to use an inline one-way valve in the tubing to prevent reverse flow. The valve should be inserted just below the bag to prevent contaminated water from entering the tubing or the bag. As with the nozzle, the only source that I can find on the Internet is from the "Beth Tyler" web site. There may be other sites that sell the same valve.
It is necessary to lubricate both your anus and nozzle before inserting. A KY Jelly will work fine. However, Astroglide Gel is thicker and less likely to wash off. It is available at most big box pharmacies.