Colon & Rectal Surgery

Rectal Cancer

Delta Medix Patient General Information

Low Anterior Resection (LAR)

The colon, sometimes referred to as the large intestine, has six sections. It begins after the small intestine ends, and is divided into the cecum, ascending colon, transverse colon, descending colon, the sigmoid colon, and the rectum. The anus is not part of the colon and is where the colon ends and the stool is evacuated from the body. Removal of one or more sections of the colon may be required due to a disease process, tumor, or mass. In certain operations, after the diseased part of the colon is removed, the remaining ends will be sewn together. In other operations, the end of the colon will come out through the abdominal wall through a small hole in the skin. The hole itself is called a stoma and the section of colon coming out through the stoma is referred to as a colostomy. A colostomy requires a drainage bag to be applied over it. Certain colostomy procedures can be reversed. The bowel is reconnected and the bag can be taken away with a second operation in the future.

A Low Anterior Resection (LAR) requires the removal of part or most of the rectum, which is the last segment of the colon before the anus. The intent of this procedure is to be able to reattach the remaining ends of the colon after a section of bowel is removed. Almost all LAR procedures are done in an attempt to cure or locally control cancer of the rectum.

When this surgery is performed for cancer, it is often necessary to remove some of the surrounding lymph nodes in that area. Lymph nodes are small glands that filter bacteria, infections and cancer cells out of the blood stream. After removal, the lymph nodes are examined microscopically to see if any of the cancer has spread.

A bowel prep is necessary to clean out the entire colon, minimize the chance of infection and safely perform the surgery.