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Ileostomy Closure


An ileostomy closure is surgery to close your temporary ileostomy. Your healthcare provider will reattach your ileum to your colon. He will also close your stoma.


Before your surgery:

  • Informed consent is a legal document that explains the tests, treatments, or procedures that you may need. Informed consent means you understand what will be done and can make decisions about what you want. You give your permission when you sign the consent form. You can have someone sign this form for you if you are not able to sign it. You have the right to understand your medical care in words you know. Before you sign the consent form, understand the risks and benefits of what will be done. Make sure all your questions are answered.
  • Medicines may be given to prevent a bacterial infection.
  • Anesthesia is medicine to make you comfortable during the surgery. Healthcare providers will work with you to decide which anesthesia is best for you.
    • General anesthesia will keep you asleep and free from pain during surgery. Anesthesia may be given through your IV. You may instead breathe it in through a mask or a tube placed down your throat. The tube may cause you to have a sore throat when you wake up.
    • Spinal anesthesia is put into your back through a shot to numb you below the waist. The feeling in your legs will return in about 2 hours.
    • Local anesthesia is a shot of medicine put into the skin of your abdomen. It is used to numb the area and dull the pain. You may still feel pressure or pushing during surgery.

During your surgery:

  • Your healthcare provider will make an incision around your stoma. He will bring the ends of your ileum and colon out of your abdomen. He will connect them with stitches or staples. He may inject saline (salt water) to check for leaks.
  • Your healthcare provider will place your reattached ileum back into your abdomen through the incision. He will close the opening on your abdomen with stitches. He may place a drain under your skin to remove extra fluid. He may also leave part or all of your skin open to heal on its own. Your wound may be covered with a bandage.

After your surgery:

You will be taken to a room to rest until you are fully awake. Healthcare providers will monitor you closely for any problems. Do not get out of bed until your healthcare provider says it is okay. When your healthcare provider sees that you are okay, you will be taken to your hospital room.

  • You will be able to drink liquids and eat certain foods once your stomach function returns. You may be given ice chips at first. Then you will get liquids such as water, broth, juice, and clear soft drinks. If your stomach does not become upset, you may then be given soft foods, such as ice cream and applesauce. Once you can eat soft foods easily, you may slowly begin to eat solid foods.
  • Medicines:
    • Pain medicine may be given. Do not wait until the pain is severe before you ask for more medicine.
    • Antinausea medicine helps calm your stomach and prevents vomiting.
    • Antidiarrheal medicine is given to decrease diarrhea.


  • You may bleed from where your ileum is stitched or stapled. After surgery, bowel contents may leak into your abdomen and cause an infection. You may also get an infection or abscess where your stoma was closed. You may have narrowing in your intestine that makes it difficult to have a bowel movement. Your intestines may also stop working for a short time after the surgery.
  • A fistula (abnormal tissue opening) may form between your intestines and a nearby organ. You may get a hernia (part of your intestine pushes through weak muscle in your abdomen). You may get a blood clot in your leg or arm. This may become life-threatening.
  • If you do not have your ileostomy closed, you may have an increased risk for infection, dehydration, or intestinal narrowing. Your stoma may come too far out of your abdomen, or sink inside your abdomen.


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.

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.

Learn more about Ileostomy Closure (Inpatient Care)

Micromedex® Care Notes