Cancer Treatment Centers of America
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Colostomy for colorectal cancer

Colostomy for colorectal cancer

This procedure may be necessary, depending on the type and extent of colorectal surgery performed. A colostomy may be temporary or permanent.

At Cancer Treatment Centers of America (CTCA), we understand you may have a lot of questions and concerns about living with a colostomy. Your care team at CTCA will educate you and your loved ones about how to care for your colostomy. We will also be here to discuss any lifestyle changes you may be concerned about, and will support you before, during and after your cancer treatment.

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What is a colostomy?

If your surgical oncologist is unable to reconnect the healthy portions of the colon and rectum, he or she may perform a colorectal cancer colostomy procedure to create an artificial opening (called a stoma) in the lower abdomen to allow the body to eliminate waste.

During this surgical procedure, a segment of the colon is attached to the skin of the abdomen. Your surgical oncologist then makes the stoma on the outside of the body. An odor-free pouching system (colostomy bag) is worn around the stoma to collect waste.