Laparoscopic Colostomy Reversal

What you should know

Laparoscopic colostomy reversal is surgery to close your colostomy and reconnect your colon.

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your caregivers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment.

Risks

  • You may bleed more than expected during or after your surgery. There is a chance that your ureters, bladder, or bowels may be damaged during surgery. You may have problems that require open surgery. Your caregiver may not be able to reconnect your colon. If this happens, you will need to keep your colostomy. You may get an infection of the skin and other tissue around your wounds. Your colon may leak or pull apart around the area where it was put back together. This can cause a serious infection. The carbon dioxide used during your surgery may rise and cause shoulder or chest pain for up to 2 days after your surgery.

  • You are at risk for skin damage around your stoma. You may get an itchy rash and your skin may become red, swollen, and sore. You may get a blood clot in your leg or arm. The blood clot can break loose and travel to your lungs. This can be life-threatening.

Getting Ready

The week before your surgery:

  • Write down the correct date, time, and location of your surgery.

  • Bring your medicine bottles or a list of your medicines when you see your caregiver. Tell your caregiver if you are allergic to any medicine. Tell your caregiver if you use any herbs, food supplements, or over-the-counter medicine.

  • Ask your caregiver if you need to stop using aspirin or any other prescribed or over-the-counter medicine before your procedure or surgery.

  • You may need to have an EKG, or blood or urine tests. Ask your caregiver for more information about these and other tests that you may need. Write down the date, time, and location of each test.

  • Follow the directions your caregiver gives you to prepare your bowels for surgery. You may be told to drink only clear fluids and to eat no solid foods for a few days before surgery. Clear liquids include water, broth, apple juice, and lemon-lime soft drinks. You may also suck on ice chips or eat gelatin. You may need to drink a special fluid or take medicine to empty your bowels the day before your surgery.

The night before your surgery:

  • You may need to check into the hospital the night before your surgery. You may be given medicine or an enema to help empty your bowels. An enema is liquid medicine put into your rectum (last section of your bowels) to prepare your bowels for surgery.

  • Ask caregivers about directions for eating and drinking.

The day of your surgery:

  • You or a close family member will be asked to sign a legal document called a consent form. It gives caregivers permission to do the procedure or surgery. It also explains the problems that may happen, and your choices. Make sure all your questions are answered before you sign this form.

  • Ask your caregiver before you take any medicine on the day of your surgery. Bring a list of all the medicines you take, or your pill bottles, with you to the hospital. Caregivers will check that your medicines will not interact poorly with the medicine you need for surgery.

  • Caregivers may insert an intravenous tube (IV) into your vein. A vein in the arm is usually chosen. Through the IV tube, you may be given liquids and medicine.

  • An anesthesiologist will talk to you before your surgery. You may need medicine to keep you asleep or numb an area of your body during surgery. Tell caregivers if you or anyone in your family has had a problem with anesthesia in the past.

  • You may get antibiotics before your surgery to help prevent an infection caused by bacteria. You may also get antibiotics during and after your surgery.

Treatment

What will happen:

Your caregiver will make 2 to 5 small incisions in your abdomen. The laparoscope and other small tools will be passed through these incisions. Your abdomen will be filled with a gas to lift the abdominal wall away from your organs. Your caregiver will cut away your colostomy from the skin. He will reconnect the cut ends to the rest of your colon with staples or stitches. The incisions on your abdomen will be closed with stitches and covered with a bandage.

After your surgery:

You will be taken to a room to rest until you are fully awake. Caregivers will watch you closely for any problems. Do not get out of bed until your caregiver says it is okay. When your caregiver sees that you are okay, you will be taken to your hospital room. You may have a plastic tube coming from your nose. This tube helps keep your stomach empty while your bowels start to work again after surgery. Do not remove this tube.

Contact a caregiver if

  • You cannot make it to your surgery.

  • You have a fever.

  • You are constipated and the medicines are not helping to empty your bowels.

  • You have questions or concerns about your surgery.

Seek Care Immediately if

  • You feel lightheaded during your bowel preparation. This may happen when you get up from lying down.

  • Your vomit or bowel movements look black, or you see blood in them.

© 2014 Truven Health Analytics Inc. Information is for End User's use only and may not be sold, redistributed or otherwise used for commercial purposes. All illustrations and images included in CareNotes® are the copyrighted property of A.D.A.M., Inc. or Truven Health Analytics.

The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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