Type of Surgery

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Doctor Certified

Last updated: 11/24/2009

Aftercare

Postoperative care for the patient who has undergone a bowel resection, as with those who have had any major surgery, involves monitoring of blood pressure, pulse, respiration, and temperature. Breathing tends to be shallow because of the effect...

of anesthesia and the patient's reluctance to breathe deeply and experience pain that is caused by the abdominal incision. The patient is instructed how to support the operative site during deep breathing and coughing, and is given pain medication as necessary. Fluid intake and output is measured, and the operative site is observed for color and amount of wound drainage. The nasogastric tube will remain in place, attached to low intermittent suction until bowel activity resumes. Fluids and electrolytes are infused intravenously until the patient's diet can gradually be resumed, beginning with liquids and advancing to a regular diet as tolerated. The patient is generally out of bed approximately eight to 24 hours after surgery. Most patients will stay in the hospital for five to seven days, although laparoscopic surgery can reduce that stay to two to three days. Postoperative weight loss follows almost all bowel resections. Weight and strength are slowly regained over a period of months. Complete recovery from surgery may take two months. Laparoscopic surgery can reduce this time to one to two weeks.

The treating physician should be informed of any of the following problems after surgery:

  • increased pain, swelling, redness, drainage, or bleeding in the surgical area
  • headache, muscle aches, dizziness, or fever
  • increased abdominal pain or swelling, constipation, nausea or vomiting, rectal bleeding, or black, tarry stools

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Other Information

Definition

A bowel resection is a surgical procedure in which a part of the large or small intestine is removed.

Description

The preferred type of bowel resection involves removal of the diseased portion of intestine, and surgically re-joining the remaining ends. In this procedure, the continuity of the bowel is maintained and normal passage of stool is preserved. When deemed necessary by the surgeon, the diseased portion of the bowel may be removed, and the functioning end of the intestine may be brought out onto the surface of the abdomen, forming an temporary or permanent ostomy. Use of the large intestine to form the ostomy results in a colostomy; use of small intestine to form the ostomy results in an ileostomy.


From http://www.answers.com/topic/bowel-resection

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