1. What is your background as a patient?
a. My background as a patient started when I was 11 it was a long period of time dealing with symptoms and finally being diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis in June of 2000. I went through many different treatments and trials before finding Remicade when I was 19. Remicade was a miracle to me. Once I started it I was in remission for 11 years. Summer of 2019 I had noticed I wasn’t feeling well and had signs of an Ulcerative Colitis flare but it felt worse to me than ever before. The doctors had gotten me back on Remicade and when it wasn’t really working, Amy the N.P sent me for a baseline colonoscopy where it was discovered that I had colon cancer. I was diagnosed with colon cancer December 4th of 2019 and each doctor visit after that I would be given increasingly bad news. I was told I had stage IV colon cancer metastasized to my liver and right ovary. Meeting with my surgeon he had explained to me that they would be removing my large intestine and give me an ileostomy to decrease the risk for my cancer to ever come back.
2. How did you get involved with 11 Health?
a. I was introduced to 11 health by my G.I nurse practitioner Amy. She had sent me a message that the company was offering support for IBD and ostomy patients. In the message she included Rena’s contact email. After receiving the message, I immediately started to research the company and sent an email to Rena.
3. What led you to wear the SmartBag?
a. When I first started to research 11 health I was surprised to see that a smart bag existed and all the information I found was about the SB1, so when I was able to discuss with Rena about the services offered and the SB2, I was hooked I wanted to know how I could wear one. I led to wear the SB2 because I was readmitted to the hospital 71 hours after discharge and was terrified to go back to the hospital during COVID because I couldn’t have any visitors. I was also starting chemo therapy very soon after I recovered from surgery and was fear full of the dehydration risks. The chemo rounds before surgery made me so sick so I was very prepared for a similar outcome and felt that SB2 would give me data I could monitor. The app also helps to keep track of the hydration intake as well which is super helpful.
4. What features of the bag stand out to you as a patient?
a. The features that stood out the me were the output monitoring. I felt like it was important for me to know how much output I was having. I like the shape and size of the bag and wafer as well.
5. How has wearing the SmartBag enhanced your life and experience as a patient?
a. Wearing the Smart Bag 2 enhanced my life in many ways and as a patient gave me confidence. Wearing the SB2 it didn’t show contents which was nice and the bag structure felt better and more comfortable as I was getting used to having a bag hanging off my abdomen. It also enhanced my life by making me more aware and accountable for my daily hydration.
6. Tell us about your lifestyle. Are you active, or more homebound?
a. I am a very active person I love to travel, work out, do yoga and hike but I am also a homebody. I work as a nurse so after a long week of working there is nothing better than just lounging on the couch and watching Netflix.
7. What do some of your daily or weekly activities include?
a. My daily activities include working out, walking and yoga. Since my surgery I
have been very scared that I wouldn’t be able to do things I was doing before like inversions (headstands/ handstands). So, I have been slowly working back up to that. I also cook most of my meal since surgery because I try to follow a strict diet and add new foods in slowly. I also make sure to read for a period of time each day.
8. How often do you go to the doctor or see a nurse?
a. I see a doctor every two weeks at this point in time. I was having a home care nurse come every week but have recently been discharged because I have been cleared to go back to work.
9. What data insights are most useful from the SmartBag or SmartCare app?
a. I found everything very useful but the data I found most useful was my daily output, the health check and the hydration tracker. The output was very interesting because depending on what I was eating it could cause an increase which helped with my food log. The health check feature was great to help monitor hydration and also see how different my heart rate could be in different positions.
10. How does your doctor or nurse team feel about this tech?
a. My doctors and nurses always seemed interested and thought it was a useful tool. My visiting ostomy nurse and homecare nurse thought it was the most interesting thing and could see how this could benefit so many patients.
11. Would you recommend this product? If so, why? If not, why?
a. I would recommend this product. I think it gives peace of mind to individuals like myself who want to feel in control of somethings. Being a new ostomate it can be hard to know if what we’re doing is right, if were hydrated, or if our skin is okay. Having the smart bag and SmartCare app allowed me to feel a bit more confident. I also really appreciated having a support person to contact when I had no idea what I was seeing and who can help me trouble shoot different methods to care for my stoma. I also would recommend this bag because I never really had any issues with leaking. So, I would 100% percent recommend this product. With the bag aside, I would recommend the company based on the support I have received from my patient coach. She put me in contact with a fellow colon cancer survivor and ostomate which has helped me so much. My patient coach has been there for me weekly with up and downs and struggles that without her I don’t think I would be as confident and upbeat about my situation. I was having skin issues and sent pictures to my patient coach and the issue was escalated to a wound ostomy nurse
and in a day had a telehealth visit to address the issue and, in that visit, I had my patient coach with me who helped by asking questions that I would not have even thought about in the moment.
12. Who do you think benefits most from this type of product?
a. I think any new ostomate can benefit from this bag. I also think ostomates who may be struggling with multiple admission for issues can benefit. A big part of this service is physicians can have access to the data the bag provides so if a patient is in the hospital they can almost see real time data versus waiting for nurses to chart the information or if there is concerns about output they can be monitoring it on the fly.
13. What do you wish to see next from 11 Health?
a. A few things I’d like to see from 11 Health would be a maintenance bag, a bag that is water proof and can be an extension, so no worries about submerging or showering and lastly a convex wafer so that more people can benefit from what 11 Health is offering.