Laparoscopic Colon Surgery

The need for the removal of the colon is due to multiple reasons. The most common two are for Colon Cancer, and Diverticulitis. Colon Cancer, which is usually diagnosed with a Colonoscopy (or a Sigmoidoscopy), almost always requires a surgical removal of the colon, as the cancer must be removed. The treatment, depending upon the stage of the colon cancer, may involve other moralities in addition to the surgery, such as Chemotherapy or Radiation Therapy.

Diverticulitis is not a cancer, and therefore in and of itself does not dictate that the colon be removed surgically. Many people have diverticuli, or outpouchings of the colon wall, which cause them intermittent pain, usually on the lower left side of their abdomen. The pain comes and goes, and often people can live with this condition. Diverticulitis, however, occurs when the outpouching bursts and becomes inflamed. This can present as a mild form of inflammation, or it can be extensive and very serious.

In both cases, Cancer or Diverticulitis, if and when surgery is indicated, the options tend to be either Open Colon Resection, or Laparoscopic Colon Resection (otherwise known as Minimally Invasive). Both operations have advantages and disadvantages, but the trend, for good reason, is toward the Laparoscopic option. Choosing a surgeon is extremely important, as the level of training, experience, and expertise in advanced laparoscopic maneuvers is critical.

In the right hands, with the right team, the Laparoscopic Colon Surgery uses small incisions, and does the least amount of abdominal wall damage. This can translate into lower risk of hernias of the abdominal wall in the future, and lower risk of scar tissue, known as adhesions, which can cause problems in the abdomen. As the procedure has become the standard of care in many situations, the overall results have continued to progress.

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