Bowel Resection is removal of some or all of the large bowel. There are also occasions where some small bowel is removed as well as some large bowel. We are not considering operations for removal of small bowel only as these tend to be less common and done as emergencies.
Bowel Resection is often performed for cancer of the colon (large bowel) and also for other conditions such as diverticulitis. It is a major procedure and the exact details of which part of the bowel is removed varies, depending of the exact location of the problem and other patient-related factors.
A colostomy is an opening on the abdominal wall where the bowel has been brought out and is often performed as part of aBowel Resection. It means that the patient will have to wear a bag to collect faecal material. Colostomies are usually temporary, but may be permanent. A temporary colostomy is done to protect the anastomosis (the area of the bowel which has been rejoined).
Your Surgeon will discuss this with you.He/she will usually be able to give you a good indication of the likelihood of a Colostomy, but the final decision is made during the operation.
Closure of a temporary colostomy is usually done a few weeks later, it requires readmission to hospital, but it is usually a straightforward operation without complications and with a shorter hospital stay. Rarely, problems develop with the colostomy closure. This can lead to protracted hospital stays.
It is worth thinking in advance about the costs of a second procedure. There may be a second excess payable to the hospital for the readmission, depending on the details of your private insurance cover.
Your surgeon will usually tell you in advance about his/her likely of out of pocket charges for the first procedure, it is worth asking if that would also cover any second operation if he has said that is possible.
Many surgeons will only charge one lot of out of pocket fees to each patient, but that does not tend to apply to anaesthetists and assistants who may not be the same as you had for the first procedure.