The Barnett Continent Intestinal Reservoir (BCIR) is one type of intestinal ostomy. The BCIR was modified from the Kock pouch by Dr. William O. Barnett.

The BCIR is a surgically-created pouch, or reservoir, on the inside of the abdomen, made from the last part of the small intestine (the ileum), and is used for the storage of intestinal waste.

The pouch works by storing the liquid waste which is drained several times a day using a small silicone tube called a catheter. This catheter is inserted through the opening on the abdomen into the pouch. The capacity of the internal pouch increases steadily after surgery: from 50ccs, when first constructed, to 600cc to 1000cc (about one quart) over a period of months, when the pouch fully matures.



The pouch is attached to the wall of the abdomen, with a short segment of the intestine leading from the pouch to the stoma.

elliptical or button-hole to stoma


The external opening, called the stoma, is elliptical or button-hole in design.

opening covered with a small adhesive dressing


There is no projecting spout. The opening is covered with a small adhesive dressing.

BCIR storing waste


Because the BCIR stores waste internally, you control disposal by deciding when and where to empty the pouch.

The opening through which the catheter is introduced into the pouch is called the stoma. It is a small, flat button-hole opening on the abdomen. Most patients cover the stoma site with a small pad or bandage to absorb the mucus that accumulates at the opening. This mucus formation is natural, and makes insertion of the catheter easier.



Traditional Ileostomy

Traditional Ileostomy

The BCIR requires no external appliance and it can be drained whenever it is convenient. Most people report that they drain their pouch 2 to 4* times a day and most times they sleep through the night. Of course, this can vary depending on what kinds and quantities of food one eats. The process of draining the pouch is simple and quickly mastered. The stoma has no nerve endings, and inserting the catheter is not painful. The process of inserting the catheter and draining the pouch is called intubation and takes just a few minutes.

The BCIR should not leak fecal contents because of the self-sealing valve mechanism and the innovative 'living collar' which is constructed from the intestine.

If you'd like to find out if a BCIR might work for you, email Susan Kay, R.N or give her a ring at (800) 336-0789. She'll be happy to answer all your questions. Don't forget to ask her to send you a CD about the BCIR procedure.

* The number of daily intubations may vary, depending on types of food and quantities consumed.

Video Demonstration of BCIR Drainage