M At The Doctor

Colon cancer surgery, colostomy

In case of colon cancer, a surgical operation is usually the reference solution to treat it.

The management of colon (or large intestine) cancer requires the intervention of a multidisciplinary team specialized in oncology (surgeon, oncologist ...). Because once the diagnosis and all the balance made, a real therapeutic strategy will be proposed to the patient. Surgery is often one of the main treatments for colon cancer.

The surgical operation can be carried out in a public hospital, or in a clinic where there are digestive surgery services, with surgeons who predominantly work with cancer.

Before the intervention

Before the surgical operation, it is of course necessary to plan a consultation with an anesthesiologist. In the past, patients were asked to swallow a "cleansing" bowel preparation; now, it is thought that this is no longer of interest.
So nothing specific is to be done before the intervention; it's better to just avoid being constipated.

The operation

Depending on the location of the cancer and the portion of the intestine to be removed: on the rectum, the left colon, the right colon, or the transverse part, the intervention and the consequences will not be quite the same.
The procedure is mostly done under laparoscopy because the repercussions are limited: the surgeon passes a mini-camera and very fine instruments through small holes in the lower abdomen.
The goal is to take off the intestine to cut off the area where the tumor is, the connected vessels and the lymph nodes if they are affected by the cancer. The surgeon can remove about half of the colon. To restore continuity, it will then suture by connecting the remaining part to the other end of the colon or to the rectum (if it is the left colon).
The operation lasts about 2 hours 30 to 3 hours.

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