Laparoscopic Sigmoid Colectomy
The colon, or the large intestine, is the rear end of the digestive tract and it works by soaking moisture and to store food waste from your diet. It is a tube-shaped hollow muscle with a very smooth interior lining made of epithelial cells. An adult has a 4-6 ft long colon with the last 6 inches forming the rectum.
A laparoscopic sigmoid colectomy is a comprehensive surgical procedure to remove all, or part, of the colon using minimally invasive (laparoscopic) surgical methods. This is a more efficient surgical method for most surgical treatments and is also more advantageous as it reduces the period of time required for the incision wound to heal which in turn speeds-up the recovery process significantly. The laparoscopic surgical method is continuously being adapted for use in various surgical treatments in other medical specialties along with gastroenterology too.
Types of Colectomy surgeries
The surgical procedures for removal of the colon varies according to the portion of colon removal as well as the type of reconnection are performed in the surgery. These are the common types of colectomy surgical treatments that are performed:
- Right Hemicolectomy – This surgical procedure requires the removal of a part, or all, of the ascending colon and rectum and reconnecting the colon to the small intestine.
- Left Hemicolectomy – This surgical treatment involves removal of part, or all, of the descending colon. The transverse colon is then reconnected with the small intestine.
- Sigmoid Colectomy – In this surgery a part, or all, of the sigmoid colon is removed and the descending colon is then reconnected with the rectum. Another variation of this surgery is the ‘low anterior resection’ which requires removal of the complete sigmoid colon and a part of the rectum. The remaining rectum is then reconnected to the descending colon.
- Abdominal Perineal Resection – This is a more extensive colectomy surgery and requires removing a part, or all, of the sigmoid colon as well as the entire anus and rectum. A colostomy will be performed next to create an opening into your abdomen (stomach)for attaching a surgical pipe to allow the excretion of waste from your body.
Who are the ideal candidates for a Laparoscopic Sigmoid Colectomy?
An ideal candidate for a laparoscopic sigmoid colectomy is a person of overall good health and sufficiently fit to undergo a surgical procedure. The candidates are such persons who suffer from various different medical disorders or problems that cause the painful symptoms. Problems such as:
- Irritable Bowel Disease
- Rectal prolapsed
A laparoscopic sigmoid colectomy is mostly successful in removing, ore reducing, several of the painful symptoms caused by such medical disorders.
Such types of mostly colorectal and bowel diseases result in abdominal pain, change in bowel habits, bleeding from the rectum, weight-loss, anemia, vomiting, fever, cramping and other similar symptoms.
The specialists will perform diagnostic tests such as detailed blood tests, colonoscopy, CT scan, barium enema, etc to determine the need of laparoscopic sigmoid colectomy.
What is a Laparoscopic Sigmoid Colectomy treatment?
A laparoscopic sigmoid colectomy is a minimally invasive surgical procedure that uses very small, thin and flexible surgical tubes (trocars) that are inserted into the body from a few very minute (keyhole) incisions. Carbon dioxide gas needs to be pumped into the abdominal cavity so that the laparoscope can be used better for getting a clear view of the colon. The other trocars are used to insert specialized surgical instruments required for the procedure.
This surgery is performed under general anesthesia to avoid any discomfort to you. A nasogastric tube will be inserted through your nostril into the throat and till your stomach. This tube helps clear any secretions that may be seen for a few days after surgery.
Compression devices are continuously used to keep your blood circulation functioning in your legs to avoid blood clots. The minimally invasive surgical instruments will then be used to perform the required surgical procedure with more efficiency and accuracy than a traditional open-type of colectomy surgical treatment.
What are the complications associated with a Laparoscopic Sigmoid Colectomy?
As is seen in many surgical procedures there are a few complications that might arise in rare cases after a laparoscopic sigmoid colectomy, such as:
- Anesthetic reaction
- Abdominal bleeding
- Abdominal (incision) wound infection
- Scar tissue intestinal obstruction
- Bowel leakage
- Heart attack
- Blood clots
- Organ injury
The doctors/surgeons will take every possible precaution to prevent these complications from arising using the latest preventive methods.
What are the advantages of a Laparoscopic Sigmoid Colectomy?
Although post-surgery results may vary slightly for individual patients, the laparoscopic sigmoid colectomy surgery is more advantageous than a tradition type of colectomy or a similar procedure as it:
- Is less painful
- Has shorter recovery period
- Has a shorter nursing care time period
- Allows faster resuming of normal diet
- Provides faster return to regular activities
- Also allows for better cosmetic healing of scars