It is a descriptive study, with a qualitative approach, carried out in 2007 with 23 nurses, students of the Post Graduate Course in Nursing of a private University in Greater São Paulo. It uses a two-part questionnaire: 1st socio-demograhic profile of the nurses and 2rd a guiding question: “nurses’ perceptions of nursing care for the patient with intestinal stoma”. The data from the 1st part were explained in a quatitative way, and in the 2rd part, the data were organized according to Minayo’s thematic analysis, based on the theoretical framework of Sister Callista Roy`s Conceptual Adaptation Model. The nurses’ adaptation models on nursing care for patients with intestinal stoma emerged in the categories of individual coping behavior; coping with family, social and work aspects, and coping with attitudes and previous experience. The data obtained was classified and analyzed, identifying and reporting the stimuli that constitute the process of coping, generated by the modes of adaptation, using cognitive mechanisms that enable the difficulties affecting the nurses’ adaptation responses to be identified. The nurses’ states of adaptation were determined, as well as the establishment of goals which favor the elaboration of proposals for nursing intervention.