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Types of Colon Resections

In colon resection, a part of the colon is taken out (resected) during surgery. The most common types of colorectal resection are listed below. Your surgeon will explain the one that is right for you.

Outline of adult abdomen showing large and small intestines. Shaded area on right colon shows right hemicolectomy. Outline of adult abdomen showing colon and small intestine connected after right hemicolectomy.
Part or all of the ascending colon and cecum are removed. The colon is then reconnected to the small intestine.

Outline of adult abdomen showing large and small intestines. Shaded area on left colon shows left hemicolectomy. Outline of abdomen showing transverse colon attached to sigmoid colon after left hemicolectomy.
Part or all of the descending colon is removed. The transverse colon is then reconnected to the rectum.

Outline of adult abdomen showing large and small intestines. Shaded area on sigmoid colon shows sigmoidectomy. Outline of adult abdomen showing descending colon attached to rectum after sigmoidectomy.
Part or all of the sigmoid colon is removed. The descending colon is then reconnected to the rectum.

Outline of adult abdomen showing large and small intestines. Shaded area on sigmoid colon and rectum shows low anterior resection. Outline of adult abdomen showing descending colon attached to rectum after low anterior resection.
The sigmoid colon and a portion of the rectum are removed. The descending colon is reconnected to the remaining rectum.

Abdominal perineal resection

Outline of adult abdomen showing large and small intestines. Shaded area on sigmoid colon, rectum, and anus shows abdominal perineal resection. Outline of abdomen showing stoma after abdominal perineal resection.
Part or all of the sigmoid colon and the entire rectum and anus are removed. A colostomy is then performed.

Colostomy

After certain types of surgery, the colon and rectum may need to be kept clear of stool while they heal. In other cases, the rectum has been taken out. Or it can’t be reconnected to the rest of the colon. In either case, you need a colostomy. This makes a new opening in the belly so waste can leave the body. You may need the new opening for a short time, or permanently. If you had a colostomy during colorectal surgery, your healthcare providers will help you learn how to care for it.

Online Medical Reviewer: Jen Lehrer MD
Online Medical Reviewer: Kenny Turley PA-C
Online Medical Reviewer: L Renee Watson MSN RN
Date Last Reviewed: 6/1/2019
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