Colorectal Surgery

Outpatient Ostomy Clinic

The URMC Division of Colorectal Surgery Outpatient Ostomy Clinic provides comprehensive enterostomal therapy services for patients with wound, ostomy and continence issues. Our holistic approach to care meets each patient’s physical, emotional, social and psychological needs. We also collaborate with referring physicians to help ensure the most positive outcomes for the patients we treat.

Services We Provide

Our Outpatient Ostomy Clinic offers expert care, education and support. We provide a full range of services for patients with a stoma (colostomy, ileostomy and urostomy), as well as fistula management.

Preoperative Services


  • Basic ostomy education and answers to questions such as surgical procedures, living with a stoma, pre- and post-op diets, concerns re: returning to work, etc.
  • Familiarize patients and their families with various types of ostomy appliances and supplies that are available.
  • Assist patients in selecting a reliable pouching system/appliance, keeping their personal needs and choices in mind.

Stoma Site Marking(s):

  • A preoperative assessment of the abdomen is performed to determine the best location for stoma placement (more than one site may be marked).
  • Stoma site marking(s) may be done during an outpatient pre-op visit, in the hospital pre-op holding area, or in a patient’s hospital room.
  • Proper stoma placement helps patients avoid post-op wound and skin complications caused by leakage.

Postoperative Services

Education on Stoma Management:

  • Patients are instructed on self-care, proper hygiene and how to maintain skin health.
  • Along with patients, families and/or caregivers learn proper stoma care to help prevent common problems from occurring.

General WOC Nursing Care:

  • Care coordination and management for patients with a new or existing ostomy, with or without complications.
  • Determine if patient’s current pouching system/appliance is adequate/ reliable and obtain new appliance if it needs to be updated.
  • Assess patient’s clothing and provide recommendations if needed for undergarments, support belts, etc.
  • Arrange for visit(s) by a home health agency prior to patient discharge and work in conjunction with this agency care and staff for a seamless continuum of care.

Problem Solving & Ongoing Support:

  • Provide assistance with pouching system/appliance failures, such as leaks.
  • Refit pouching system/appliance to provide proper seal and optimum comfort as needed.
  • Assist with short-term care and/or long-term management for patients with peristomal skin loss, infections, ulcers, and/or rashes.
  • Ensure that the patient is coping with lifestyle changes, help to alleviate anxieties associated with the ostomy, providing support as needed.

About Christa M. Heinsler, RN, NP-CWOCN

Christa M. Heinsler, our Outpatient Ostomy Clinic’s certified wound, ostomy and continence nurse, is dedicated to helping patients adjust and care for their ostomy with confidence. Christa earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from St. John’s University, a Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing from Columbia University, and a Master of Science in Nursing/Oncology from the University of Rochester. She then went on to complete the Enterostomal Therapy Nurse Education Program at Albany Medical Center and additional clinical experience as a Nurse Practitioner at St. John Fisher College.

Christa is a member of the URMC Division of Colorectal Surgery Outpatient Ostomy Clinic as well as the in-patient WOC Nurse Team. Prior to working at SMH, she was employed at Rochester General Hospital as their WOC Nurse, caring for in-patients as well as out-patients throughout this healthcare system. These positions included Nurse Practitioner, Clinician V for the Department of Surgical Nursing as well as WOC Nurse Educator. She was also employed as a Wound/Ostomy Nurse for Lifetime Care, WOC Nurse consultant for local nursing homes, and a Nursing Supervisor at Upjohn Healthcare Services. Christa also served as Adjunct Clinical Professor at St. John Fisher College from 2008 to 2009. She is currently the president of the Central-Western NYS WOCN affiliate and has lectured locally & nationally on various WOCN topics.

Contact Us

The goal of our Outpatient Ostomy Clinic is to help patients heal, return to normal daily activities faster, and enjoy the best possible quality of life. For information or to schedule an appointment, please call (585) 242-1380.

Convenient Location:

Colorectal Office at URMC Surgery Center

180 Sawgrass Drive, Suite 220
Rochester, NY 14620


Free parking is available directly outside our building.

Hours (by appointment only):

Tuesday & Wednesday: 8:45-11:15 a.m. and 12:45 - 3:45 p.m.

Thursday: 12:45 - 3:45 p.m.

Insurance: We accept most major insurances. Some insurance carriers require a referral from your primary care physician; please refer to your plan’s coverage. All co-pays/payments are due when services are rendered.

Make an Appointment

By Phone: (585) 273-2727
By Fax: (585) 276-2203

By Email:

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