Ostomy/ Stoma Bags Make an Appointment 413-794-7020 An ostomy, or stoma, is a surgically created opening between the intestines and the wall of the abdomen. Once an ostomy is created, bowel movements pass through the opening and into an ostomy bag. The bag is disposable and emptied or replaced as needed. An ostomy allows solid waste to leave your body without passing through your rectum and anus. They may be permanent or temporary. Your doctor may recommend an ostomy if you have: Anal, colon, or rectal cancer Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), such as Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis Bowel obstruction Infection Fecal incontinence Diverticular disease Rest assured that the colorectal surgeons at Baystate Health will walk you through the decision to place an ostomy. An ostomy bag is placed only when it’s absolutely necessary. We’ll help you prepare for life with an ostomy bag using education and support before and after the surgery.