We are asked quite regularly what is the best option between a one-piece appliance (the pouch is fixed to the skin barrier) or a two-piece appliance (the pouch is separated from the skin barrier). No matter which company designs the product you are currently using, it can offer both options. So, how to choose?

As I explained in my first contribution on this blog a few months ago, the best fit combined with an optimal skin barrier formulation should mainly guide your choice. However, these two primary needs can be met by using a one-piece appliance, as well as a two-piece appliance. The choice then depends on your preferences.

The one-piece appliance offers a better flexibility and a greater discretion than a two-piece appliance since it doesn’t require a coupling mecanism between the pouch and the skin barrier. This type of appliance is available with many options (flat, convex, drainable, disposable, etc.) to fit your needs. So, if flexibility and discretion are your priorities, you may want to focus on a one-piece appliance. It should be noted that this option is widely used by people having a urostomy. On the other hand, the pouch maintenance, the system application and the need to change the entire appliance every time can cause certain inconvenience to the people living with a stoma. In such cases, it is likely that they will prefer to use a two-piece appliance.

For its part, the two-piece appliance is by far the most widely used system in Quebec where most hospitals have chosen this option. A two-piece appliance offers several benefits to the user. It is easy to prepare and to install and it simplifies pouch maintenance, as well as offering a wide range of collecting pouch options. Indeed, some people will opt for a two-piece appliance for a greater versatility. It is easy to replace a 30-cm collection pouch by a disposable or a smaller drainable pouch for a few hours, depending on the current activity, without having to change the skin barrier. Moreover, it is easy to temporarily replace a two-piece pouch when it is wet after bathing, for example. Once dried, it can be used again, which can be advantageous from a financial point of view. However, as previously mentioned, a two-piece system will be less flexible and discreet than a one-piece appliance.

In conclusion, it is important to remember that each option has advantages and disadvantages. The final decision is up to you. To learn more about these two types of appliances, I encourage you to consult your healthcare specialist, a detailer specializing in the sale of ostomy products, or to contact the Customer Service of the manufacturer of the product you are currently using. 

Dany Lamontagne
Quebec Business Manager
Hollister Limited  

Brought to you by : Premier Ostomy center