Many ostomates feel more self-conscious about their body than the average person. Sometimes we use special clothing, wraps or products like the Stealth Belt to boost our comfort and confidence, but many of us feel most comfortable when we keep things simple. An ostomy pouch cover can help, and today I’ll be reviewing two from Grandma’s Hands.When I had my ileostomy procedure in August 2013, I was sent home with transparent pouches. I loved the idea of seeing what’s going on with my stoma, but my family didn’t share the same sentiment, so I switched to opaque pouches for many months afterwards.
While I’m quite happy wearing my Stealth Belt when going out, I don’t often wear anything special at home during the day, so I began looking for a pouch cover that would fit my taste.
When I began testing more ostomy products and wanted to be able to troubleshoot a few issues I was having, I switched back to using transparent pouches, but the idea of using a pouch cover with a transparent pouch seemed counterproductive, so I began looking around for a pouch cover that allowed me to quickly see the contents of my pouch without having to remove the entire cover.
I couldn’t find any that were already made like this, so I contacted a local company called “Grandma’s Hands” and discussed options.
I spoke with Carol from the company and shared my idea about having a modified version of her pouch cover made, and after emailing a few photo’s of what I had in mind, she sent me photo’s of a prototype and they were just what I was looking for!
So I ordered two custom pouches (coined “peek-a-boo”) , one made from cotton and the other a more stretchy fabric. Their website offers many different colors/patterns to choose from in cotton, stretchy and satin fabrics. When placing my order, I included the details of my pouch (flange size, 1 or 2 piece system, etc.) and that’s it.
I received my pouches less than a week after placing the order (I’m also in Ontario) and I love them.
Using these covers is easy enough, you slip your pouch through the hole in the back and adjust if necessary. The fact that these custom pouches have a “peek-a-boo” window makes it even easier to adjust my pouch while it’s on. My pouch system (Coloplast Sensura Click, two-piece) has tabs which the pouch cover can hook onto so it doesn’t slide off. I’ve seen these tabs on other brands too, so I’m confident in saying that the pouch cover won’t slip off most popular brands of pouching systems (it’s never slipped off for me).
I have not tried these pouch covers on a one-piece system.
The covers are quite comfortable, and I’ve used them both during the day and night without any problem. One thing I will note when it comes to night-time wear is that my pouch is often quite full (ballooned) when I wake up to empty at night, and using any pouch cover makes things a bit difficult when it gets to that point. Since I prefer to either remove the pouch cover completely or roll up the bottom, both are nearly impossible to do with a full pouch. Luckily, with the help of the Osto EZ-Vent and the peek-a-boo window on these pouch covers, I can simply deflate my pouch and proceed to empty it normally.
Doing it with a Nu-Hope pouch cover is impossible and/or messy. And speaking of the Nu-Hope pouch covers, they are tapered at the bottom, which means you can’t really roll them up when you empty your pouch (potentially causing a messy situation). The covers from Grandma’s Hands can be rolled up with ease and they feature a Velcro bottom to keep things closed.
Washing these pouch covers is easy, and you can either do it by hand (which I prefer) or use the gentle cycle on the washing machine and hang to dry.
At the time of this writing (Feb 2017), these pouch covers sell for CDN$11.99, which is less than most pouch covers I’ve seen. My insurance covered the cost of these pouches, but not the shipping (which was $12 for the two). While the company is located in Ontario, Canada, their products can be shipped internationally. I will point out that the “peek-a-boo” style that I’ve reviewed
is not on the website, but Carol said that she’s glad to accommodate any requests for this style. is now being offered!
The “peek-a-boo” pouch covers from Grandma’s Hands are a step-up from traditional pouch covers, since it allows me to see into my transparent pouch when I need to and they are comfortable and look great. I use these covers even with my opaque pouches and I recommend them to anyone who’s looking to accessorize their ostomy appliance.
You can find these ostomy pouch covers, as well as insulin pump and EpiPen pouches on the Grandma’s Hands website http://www.grandmashands.ca/
Do you use pouch covers? How have they worked for you?