A colostomy is a surgical procedure to divert one end of the large intestine (colon) through an opening in the abdominal wall(tummy).
The end of the bowel is called a stoma.Apouch is placed over the stoma to collect waste products that usually pass through the colon and out of the body through the rectum and anus (back passage).
A colostomy can be permanent or temporary.
It's estimated that around 6,400 permanent colostomies are carried out each year in the UK.
A colostomymay beusedwhen there's a problem with an area of the colon. The colostomy diverts digestive waste away from the affected area, to give it a chance to heal.
In other cases, a colostomy is formed after a section of the colon has been removed and the bowel can't be joined back together. This may only be temporary, with a further operation to remove the colostomy at a later date, or it may be permanent.
A colostomy may be used to treat the following conditions:
There are two main ways a colostomy can be formed:
Loop colostomies tend to be temporary and require a further operation at a later date to reverse the procedure. It's also possible to reverse an end colostomy, but this is less common. You'll usually have to stay in hospital for 3-10 days after a colostomy or colostomy reversal.
A similar procedure, known as an ileostomy , is sometimes used as an alternative to a colostomy. This involves creating a stoma by diverting the small intestine instead of the large intestine.
Specialist stoma nurses can offer support and advice to help you adapt to life with a colostomy.
A colostomy is a surgical procedure to divert one end of the large intestine (colon) through an opening in the abdominal wall (tummy).
There are several different ways a colostomy can be formed. The specific technique used will depend on your circumstances.
After a colostomy, you'll need to stay in hospital for a few days while you recover.
Complications of a colostomy can include rectal discharge, a parastomal hernia or a stoma blockage.
It can be difficult to adjust to a colostomy at first, but it doesn't mean you can't have a full and active life.
If your colostomy is intended to be temporary, further surgery will be needed to reverse it at a later date.