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Pre-operative Preparation for a Colostomy procedure

There is some important information about the pre-operative preparation for this procedure. It is imperative that you read this.

Read about Bowel Pre-operative Preparation


About colostomy

A colostomy is performed to divert the faecal stream away from the site of an abnormality downstream such as a blockage. It is also performed where the bowel is resected usually for a tumour and it is not safe or it is deemed that the patient will have unacceptable function if a join up is attempted. The other main reason is for incontinence that cannot be corrected by any other means.


A colostomy is either an end colostomy where the colon is completely divided and the upstream end is brought out on the left side below the level of the belly button. Alternatively it is a loop colostomy whereby a loop sigmoid colon is brought out and both ends are effectively opened up, with intention of closing this and restoring normal bowel function at a later date.

Anaesthesia and antibiotics

The operation will be performed under a general anaesthetic, administered by an anaesthetist. Antibiotics will be given in the operating room.

Operative procedure

The bowel will be operated on using keyhole surgery through several small incisions made in the abdomen. Occasionally the procedure is an integral part of another procedure such as a bowel resection which is usually done laparoscopically but occasionally as an open operation.

Post-operative Care following a Colostomy procedure

There is some very useful information regarding your care following this procedure and it is important that you take time to read it.

Read about Bowel Post-operative Care

Related Information

Read about Laparoscopy