Most people have surgery for colon cancer that hasn't spread. The operation you have depends on the position of the cancer in the bowel.
This section is about surgery for cancer that starts in the large bowel (colon cancer) that hasn't spread to another part of the body.
The type of surgery you have for cancer of the large bowel (colon) depends on the position and the size of the cancer in the bowel.
You have an appointment at the pre assessment clinic 1 or 2 weeks before your operation. You have tests to check you are fit for surgery and meet the team who will be looking after you.
Local resection is for small, early stage colon cancers. Your surgeon removes the cancer from the bowel lining, along with a border of healthy tissue (margin).
Your surgeon might remove part of the colon containing the tumour. This is called a colectomy.
A colostomy is an operation to create an opening (stoma) of the large bowel (colon) onto the surface of the tummy (abdomen).
An ileostomy is an opening (stoma) of the small bowel (ileum) onto the surface of the tummy (abdomen).
After a big operation, you might wake up in the intensive care unit (ICU) or high dependency unit (HDU). You are likely to have a drip into your arm to give you fluids until you are eating and drinking again.
There is a risk of problems or complications after any operation for bowel cancer including: infections, blood clots and bleeding.
You might have surgery if advanced bowel cancer blocks your bowel and causes symptoms. Sometimes you can have surgery to remove cancer that has spread to your liver or lungs.