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P570 The Young Adult's Perception of Life with Inflammatory Bowel Disease and a Stoma: A qualitative examination

L. Horgan*1, H. Richards2, A. Joy3

1Beaumont Hospital, Gastroenterology, Dublin, Ireland, 2Mercy University Hospital, University College Cork, Department of Psychology , Cork, Ireland, 3University College Cork, School of Medicine, Cork, Ireland


While the experiences of young adults with Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) and a resultant stoma have been investigated in the USA, there is a paucity of such qualitative research in Europe. In Ireland, the voices of this patient cohort have remained remarkably silent.

The purpose of this study was to achieve an understanding of the lived experience as depicted by young adults with IBD and a stoma.


A qualitative approach was adopted comprising a single, detailed semi-structured interview with each of the 5 participants aged 20-30 years. Purposive sampling was employed. Those with a histological diagnosis of IBD and a consequential stoma within the last 12 months were recruited via a letter of invitation. Verbatim transcripts of these interviews and associated field notes were analysed using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis. Ethical approval was attained prior to study commencement.


Five superordinate themes emerged from the analysis as outlined in table 1: (1) Control, (2) Secrecy, (3) Patient education and support services, (4) Difficult emotions, (5) Acceptance and growth. A universal struggle to preserve autonomy of bodily function, emotions and healthcare decisions existed among participants. Patients embraced the predictability of their stoma relative to the restraints imposed on them by their erratic pre-operative bowel habit. Participants also reiterated the importance of patient education in order to avoid uncertainty and distress for some patients.


ECCOJC jju027 P570 F0001



This study provides a greater understanding of the education and support requirements of this patient cohort and highlights existing deficits in our healthcare system. Furthermore, we gain a unique insight into the obstacles, fears and emotions of this patient cohort. This resource is invaluable and may serve to guide us when planning resources for patients faced with stoma formation