The One Pass Ostomy Draining Device: a great product for the outdoors

Usually it is the big flashy things like climbing ropes, packs or tents that become my most coveted outdoor gear. Lately however, a much simpler and unassuming piece of gear has become one of my favorites.

A couple of months ago UPTT Inc. sent me a One Pass Ostomy Draining Device (OPODD) to try on my adventures. Due to my hip injury, I had to put off testing the device outdoors until a three-day backpacking in Rocky Mountain National Park in June. This, however, did not stop me from trying it indoors. The OPODD is an instrument with two flat rollers that clamps onto your pouch when you want to empty. With one downward motion, the device pushes all pouch contents swiftly out of the tail. Though it took a few tries to get used to the OPODD, once I had the hang of it I found myself reaching for the tool again and again. It is especially useful on those days when my output is thick and difficult to push out of the pouch. One quick swipe of the device and the output is forced out — no matter what its consistency.

I liked the device so much that I was soon using it every time I emptied at home. Though I usually leave the device at home because I seldom carry a purse, the slim design of the OPODD makes it easy to fit in a handbag or tote to be carried anywhere you go.

The OPODD clamps on the pouch. Emptying the contents only takes one smooth downward swipe.

After trying it out, I was convinced that the OPODD was great to use at home. Now it was time to take it into the wilderness with me. Ever mindful of my pack weight, I am very picky about what I choose to bring on backpacking trips. Something has to be highly useful to make the cut. It didn’t take long to realize how happy I was to have the OPODD along on my first backpack adventure of the season. In the middle of cooking dinner on our first night, the sky darkened and big heavy raindrops spilled from the sky. We swiftly donned our rain gear and dashed under the trees with our dinner. Despite being covered by tree branches and Gore Tex, my clothing soaked up the dampness and my teeth began to chatter from the chill. Leave it to my ostomy to decide that this was the best time to produce ample amounts of output. I had to make a trek to the camp privy in a full-on rain storm.

When I got to the backcountry restroom facilities (a pit toilet sitting out in the middle of the woods with no walls or roof), I quickly grabbed my OPODD, clamped it on my pouch, slid it down and had the contents emptied within seconds. Normally it would have been hard to manually work output to the tail-end of my pouch with such cold hands, but maneuvering the device was easy even with the chill-induced clumsiness.

Heading to the privy with my OPODD on a very chilly evening.

That night, the handiness of the OPODD proved itself again. When I do strenuous exercise such as backpacking during the day, my output often slows down or stops almost entirely. That means everything comes out later — often in the middle of the night. Getting up at 2 a.m and walking five minutes away from camp alone is unnerving.  Sitting down to empty my appliance by headlamp while surrounded by miles and miles of pitch black wilderness  spooks me out. It is one of those times when I swear twigs are being stepped on all around me, and I imagine mountain lions behind every boulder. Pulse racing and goosebumps fully engaged, I want to purge the contents of my pouch as fast as possible and get back to the tent. This particular night, I ended up having to endure this experience a couple of times. It was wonderful to be able to clamp the OPODD on my pouch, slide the contents out quickly and return to the comfort of my sleeping bag and the company of a snoring Doug.

My positive experiences that first day made the device completely worth its weight — and that is really the only issue with bringing the OPODD on outdoor trips. For those who try to backpack on the ultra-light side, the OPODD weighs in at 3.6 ounces. Not heavy by any means, but when one is trying to get their pack weight as low as possible, every ounce counts. Personally I feel that the extra weight is a small price to pay for the ease the device adds to emptying my pouch in the wilderness.

The only challenge I noticed with the OPODD was that it couldn’t slide over the Velcro at the end of my Convatec Pouches. This didn’t end up being an issue though. I would just push the output as far as the Velcro with the OPODD and then drain out the rest manually. This actually worked great because it prevents any output from getting on the device.

You can’t see my OPODD, but it is tucked in my pack as I head out on a backpacking  trip in the Mt. Massive Wilderness two weeks after the one in Rocky Mountain National Park. I plan to bring the OPODD on every wilderness excursion in the future.

As I continued to test out the OPODD, I  realized that it was going to become an indispensable piece of outdoor gear. Two weeks after the Rocky Mountain National Park trip, Doug and I were out in the backcountry again on a hike up Mt. Massive which included two nights of camping in the wilderness. This time the challenge was mosquitoes which swarmed around me every time I tried to empty.  One plus of having an ostomy is that you don’t have to expose your bum when emptying like you would when having a normal bm. Still, the skeeters were happy to attack the uncovered skin on my hands instead. The speed at which the OPODD allowed me to empty prevented me from getting many itchy bites.

From cold hands, to scary dark nights and blood-thirsty insects, the OPODD came to the rescue and allowed me to empty quickly and easily. I never plan to hit the trail without it again.

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9 thoughts on “The One Pass Ostomy Draining Device: a great product for the outdoors

  1. Hiedi,

    Have you tried the Colo-Majic liners? I have been using them since one week and I really like them a lot. They work with any kind of two pouch systems and all you have to do is insert a liner in the pouch and when you have to change have another pouch ready with the liner and swap the pouch . After swapping you can take the liner out of pouch and flush it out and put a new liner and have that pouch ready for next change. It is really mess free and so far I am loving those liners. Good thing is these liners are flushable and so far I didn’t encounter any bad liners and it is saving on pouches.

    For anyone who are interested to try these I would say it is worth giving a try and see if you like them.

    Have a great week.

    Thanks!

    1. Bhavana,

      I bought some of the liners a while back, but have yet to try them. It looks like they might be very useful for outdoor adventures where it would be difficult to empty. Right now I just use closed-end pouches in these instances and pack out the full ones. With the liners, I wouldn’t have to toss the pouch… just the liner. I will have to give them a try in the future and write about my experiences.

      Cheers,
      Heidi

      1. I have tried the ColoMagic liners and like them for outdoor adventures. I plan to use them during my Nepal2012 trip this October-November. Makes disposals much more convenient, its less gear to carry, and a small stack of these is a nice contingency if i lost my ‘pouches kit’.
        The liner makes the flange-to-pouch seal slightly less effective, so there can be some smell on some occasions … with outdoor activities, and the people i travel with, this is not a problem at all. (but i wouldn’t use the liners for airline travel 🙂

      2. Hi Paul,

        Thanks for the letting me know about the smell possibility. I really do need to try the liners that I bought. I am just putting it off because the closed-end pouches have been working so well for me on adventures. (And I usually only use them for the times when I absolutely can’t empty since ileostomies make so much liquid-like output… is heavy to pack out!!!) You are right that the ColoMagic liners are much smaller to pack though. Your post makes me eager to give them a try.

        -Heidi

  2. Thank you for the wonderful review.As the inventor of this device I know how much freedom it gave me during the four years of my ostomy. I am so pleased that it is helping you in some small way to cope. Phil Rondeau inventor OPODD.

    1. Thanks for inventing such a great tool! Recently I have discovered one other situation when I really like using the OPODD. After I shower or swim and my pouch is all wet, I always find it difficult to slide my fingers down the appliance to empty it. I love how the OPODD clamps on and easily drains my pouch in these cases. I think I will be finding more reasons that I like this device for months to come!
      -Heidi

  3. Just found your site. I am a big camper, and love the outdoors. And I have a four month old ileostomy. This is my second one, and I did camp with the other one as well. I think I am going to find a lot of ideas on your blog to help when I am ready to go camping and hiking once again. I also joined your Facebook page.

    1. Welcome to the site! I hope you find it helpful. Feel free to post questions, stories, and any tips you discover while out on your adventures on the Facebook page.too. Other followers would love to read hem. Happy camping!

      -Heidi

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