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WOCN Society and ASCRS Position Statement on Preoperative Stoma Site Marking for Patients Undergoing Colostomy or Ileostomy Surgery

Salvadalena, Ginger; Hendren, Samantha; McKenna, Linda; Muldoon, Roberta; Netsch, Debra; Paquette, Ian; Pittman, Joyce; Ramundo, Janet; Steinberg, Gary

Journal of Wound Ostomy & Continence Nursing: May/June 2015 - Volume 42 - Issue 3 - p 249–252
doi: 10.1097/WON.0000000000000119

Marking the optimal location for a stoma preoperatively enhances the likelihood of a patient's independence in stoma care, predictable pouching system wear times, and resumption of normal activities. Colon and rectal surgeons and certified ostomy nurses are the optimal clinicians to select and mark stoma sites, as this skill is a part of their education, practice, and training. However, these providers are not always available, particularly in emergency situations. The purpose of this position statement, developed by the Wound, Ostomy and Continence Nurses Society in collaboration with the American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons and the American Urological Association, is to provide a guideline to assist clinicians (especially those who are not surgeons or WOC nurses) in selecting an effective stoma site.

Task Force Chair

Ginger Salvadalena, PhD, RN, CWOCN, Global Clinical Affairs, Hollister Incorporated, Libertyville, Illinois.

Task Force Members

Samantha Hendren, MD, MPH, Surgery, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.

Linda McKenna, MSN, RN, CWOCN, Ostomy & Wound, Memorial Medical Center, Springfield, Illinois.

Roberta Muldoon, MD, FACS, Surgery, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, Tennessee.

Debra Netsch, DNP, RN, CNP, FNP-BC, CWOCN, Mankato Clinic, Ltd, Mankato, Minnesota.

Ian Paquette, MD, Surgery, University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, Cincinnati, Ohio.

Joyce Pittman, PhD, ANP-BC, FNP-BC, CWOCN, Wound/Ostomy, Indiana University School of Nursing, Indiana University Health-Methodist, Indianapolis, Indiana.

Janet Ramundo, MSN, RN, CWOCN, WOC Nurse, Houston Methodist Hospital, Houston, Texas.

Gary Steinberg, MD, Urologic Oncology and Section of Urology, The University of Chicago Medicine, Chicago, Illinois.

Correspondence: Becky Dryden, BA, Website and Publications Editor, WOCN Society, 1120 Route 73, Ste 200, Mount Laurel, NJ 08054 (

This position statement was originated by the Wound, Ostomy and Continence Nurses Society's (WOCN) Stoma Site Marking Task Force in collaboration with the American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons (ASCRS) in 2007.1

This position statement was updated/revised by the WOCN Society's Stoma Site Marking Task Force in collaboration with the ASCRS and the American Urological Association (AUA).

The authors declare no conflict of interest and no outside use of funding was used in the development of this position statement.

© 2015 by the Wound, Ostomy and Continence Nurses Society.