Having an MRI with an ileostomy

Having an MRI with an ileostomy

Back in March, I had to go for yet another MRI scan. In my opinion, having a scan wasn’t an overly big issue. It was a necessary evil to make sure that my post-operative recovery was going well. I needed to find out what was ticking away inside, due to some post-op concerns regarding my lady anatomy changes and drainage issues.

I had to fast for 10 hours prior to having the procedure done and I can say that lacking in stoma output is always a great feeling. The lack of sleep was not great, but that’s just how my brain works, as it goes over alternative scenarios as to what may be found.


My experience

Arriving at the MRI suite an hour prior to my appointment was a bit touch-and-go. The trains were running slightly behind, so I had to run from London Bridge into Guy’s Hospital and locate the floor quickly or I wouldn’t have had enough time to drink the contrast fluid prior to the scan.

In the waiting room I had to fill in the necessary questionnaire form and confirm that I was not pregnant, had no metal implants and confirm the last surgery dates along with confirming I did indeed have tattoos.

I got changed into some rather fetching scrubs and hospital gown so my dignity was kept. Drinking the contrast is always a slightly tedious task, but when I have missed my morning breakfast and cup of Yorkshire Tea it is greatly received, as my tummy was making noises that Alien would be proud of.

recovery update

The contrast was consumed and three bag empties later, I was taken through to the waiting area and the poor nurse tried fives times to insert a cannula to no avail. My veins were not playing ball that day, so I entered the MRI suite and prayed that the contrast would work its magic.

I had a small bowel and pelvic contrast MRI. I was in the machine for just over an hour and I actually fell asleep. They gave me foam inner ear plugs and put headphones over the top so the noise was rather muted.

Once the scan was over, they said my results would be through in the next two to four weeks and to wait for an appointment to come from my GI to discuss the results.

I loitered around the hospital for another 45 minutes, as the contrast was causing merry havoc with a fasted bowel. Once I felt confident in the fact that no more was going to be released into the bag, I left and headed for the nearest ITSU and got some food in me. In hindsight, a bowl of noodles swimming in broth probably wasn’t my wisest move, but I was so hungry I didn’t care about the consequences until I got on the train and they announced that the toilets were out of service. I was praying that my output would stop for the full 45-minute train journey back home and I was cradling my fit to burst stoma bag like a baby and running for the toilets at the train station like a lunatic.

I finally emptied my bag and I could breathe a sigh of relief as I headed up the stairs to go home. My results will be covered in a blog post to follow.

Many thanks for reading,

Louise X



This blog post is intended to give advice to ostomates. The information given is based on Louise’s personal experience and should not be taken as clinical advice. Each ostomates needs are unique to them and their stoma care routine. Please consult with your Stoma Care Nurse before undertaking any changes to your stoma care routine.



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