A colostomy is a surgical procedure performed when the remaining healthy portions of the intestine and rectum is not able to reconnect to make a passage to eliminate the waste from the body. The procedure involves the creating of a stoma in the abdomen. A stoma is an opening in the abdominal wall that acts as a pouch to collect the feces. Stoma is the inner lining of the intestine. It appears pink to red in color and is mucus filled and moist surfaced with a round or oval shape. The type of colostomy decides the size of the stoma and varies on individuals. After the surgery, the stoma appears large but eventually, it shrinks and disappears.
Colostomy procedure reroutes the normal method of waste elimination. The procedure is performed alone or in combination with other surgical procedure that requires rerouting the waste elimination system in the body. This procedure is performed in individuals who had undergone large intestine repair surgery and not able to reconnect the intestine or colon to the rectum or anus. The procedure does not cause pain as there are no nerve endings in the stoma and there is no storage of stool as the connection between the colon and rectum is terminated and redirected to the colostomy bag attached to the abdomen.
Why is a Colostomy performed?
A Colostomy is done to correct and redirect the bowel movements. This procedure can be temporary or permanent to divert the stool from the intestine. A permanent colostomy is performed when the intestine is affected by colon cancer and not able to reconnect the healthy portion of the intestine and the rectum to form a passage after removing affected segments of the intestine.
A permanent colostomy is performed when following conditions occur:
- a blockage or injury in the intestine
- inflammatory bowel disease
- colorectal cancer and colonic polyps
- imperforate anus or other birth defects
- irritable bowel syndrome
- ulcerative colitis
At Kims hospital, we perform the minimally invasive laparoscopic colostomy surgery. The surgery is performed as a single process or in combination with other surgery performed in the intestine. The surgeon initiates the procedure by administering a dose of general anesthesia to relax the muscles and to reduce the pain and discomfort during the surgery. The surgeon makes an incision in the abdomen and inserts a laparoscope (an instrument with a camera attached at the end) to view enlarged images of the abdominal cavity and intestine. After the investigation and repair of the intestine an ideal location of the intestine is figured to form a stoma. Next a ring is implanted to hold the intestine in place to hold the stoma in the abdomen. This ring can be temporary or permanent. After creating the stoma, the incisions are closed and sutured.
After a colostomy, the colon and rectum are diverted to the colostomy bag and feces are removed from the stoma attached.
Laparoscopic colostomy procedure is gaining popularity because of the many advantages of this technique and these include:
- Few small wounds
- Shorter hospital stay
- Less pain and discomfort after the surgery
- Faster recovery to normal activity
- Lower incidence of infections and complications
- Minimal scarring