Colon resection surgery, which is clinically referred to as a colectomy, is sometimes necessary when treating colorectal cancer, colonic diverticular disease, trauma, inflammatory bowel disease or uncontrollable bleeding, as stated by the University of Chicago Medical Center. The procedure is sometimes also employed to remove large polyps lining the colon.
When a colon resection is performed because of a noncancerous growth, it is typically because the growth is causing a blockage or bleeding. It might also be necessary to resection the colon to remove the growth to prevent it from turning into cancer. When a colon resection is used to treat cancerous tumors, the tumor and all surrounding lymph and vascular structures are removed. The use of chemotherapy may be used in conjunction with the colectomy as part of a treatment plan.
If the colectomy is performed to treat diverticulitis or inflammatory diseases such as Crohn's disease, the infected or inflamed segment is removed. The bowel may be routed to empty into a bag outside the stomach wall, at least for a time, following the surgery.
During the colectomy, part or all of the colon is removed, depending on whether the procedure is a total or partial colectomy. The nature of the disease dictates the extent of the removal. Traditional open surgery or less-invasive laparoscopic surgery may be employed during the colectomy.