Colon Surgery

Q: What is the colon?

A: The colon, aka large intestine, is the last part of the intestines that leads to the rectum and ultimately the anus

Q: What are the procedures Dr. Lugo performs in the colon?

A: Dr. Lugo performs two main procedures in the colon. A colectomy or colon resection and a colonoscopy or examination with a camera/scope.

Q: What are the reasons a person may need surgery on the colon?

A: Surgery of the colon can be grouped into two main groups of reasons. Infectious or due to growth or tumor. The most common infectious cause for colon resection is diverticulitis. The most common cause of colon resection due to a mass is colon cancer. 

Q: What is diverticulitis?

A: Diverticulitis is an infection of small pockets in the colon that develop as we age due to the lack of enough fiber in our diet among other causes. These pockets get impacted or filled with stool and as it decomposes, it causes inflammation of the colon wall. Most cases of diverticulitis are treated and resolve with oral antibiotics and diet restriction, but on occasions the infection is severe and the colon ruptures requiring surgery. If the surgery is done emergently then at times the patient ends up with a colostomy bag, which is reversed. If we can postpone surgery and cool off the infection then we can do only one surgery to remove the infected or affected colon. 

Q: When do I need a colonoscopy?

A: Everyone should get a colonoscopy at age 50 then every 10 years. Like with anything else there are special circumstances when the 10-year interval is reduced and we perform colonoscopy sooner. Every patient has his/her's special circumstances, so your situation may be different from the last person. We take into consideration, symptoms, history of polyps, family history of colon cancer, etc...

Q: What is a colostomy?

A: a colostomy is an opening made in the side of the abdomen to exteriorize the colon after we disconnected it due to removal and then the person will move his/her bowels into the bag until this is reversed.

Q: What is a polyp?

A: A polyp is a growth that can occur in different parts of the body. Most polyps are not cancerous, but we remove them to prevent cancer. Cancers start as a polyp and then degenerate into a malignant tumor. 

Q: Does it hurt to have a polyp removed

A: The simple answer is no.

Q: Do I need sedation for a colonoscopy?

A: Yes, it is necessary to be able to tolerate all the air that is pumped to distend the colon cs be able to see.