Colectomy refers to surgical removal of the colon or the large intestine. A colectomy is necessitated by abnormal conditions/diseases that affect the colon, such as colon cancer, polyps of colon, Crohn's disease, diverticular disease, traumatic damage to the colon, etc. Based upon the condition of the patient, the surgeon may go for a partial or a complete colectomy. A partial colectomy is the removal of a part of the colon that has been affected by the disease. In extreme conditions, the physician may decide to remove the complete colon. Once the colon or a part of it is removed, the remaining ends of the gastrointestinal canal are stretched and connected together. In some cases, when the remaining ends cannot be connected, the physician makes an anastomosis (artificial passage) by connecting the remaining part of the colon to a surgical opening in the abdomen. This opening passes the excreta out of the body into a bag attached to the patient's body. A laparoscopic colectomy is a minimally invasive procedure that removes a part or the whole of the colon through a couple of smaller incisions compared to an open procedure that requires larger incisions. One of the small incisions is used to insert a scope (camera) while the other incisions are used to access, excise, and remove the excised parts of the colon with the help of the view provided by the camera. Because the incisions are very small (0.25 –0.5 inch), they heal faster and the patient can be released after a short hospital stay.
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