Colostomy surgery

A colostomy is created out of the end of the large intestine to divert waste from your digestive system. After you have this surgery, you will pass waste through a stoma that is located on your abdomen. The location of your colostomy is determined by the location of the damaged portion of your colon. The pictures below demonstrate the different areas in which a colostomy can be placed. Depending on placement and reason for the stoma, these can be permanent or temporary.1 2

  • In the ascending colon
  • Uncommon type of colostomy
  • Output is liquid to semi-liquid and very irritating to the skin2,3


  • In the transverse colon
  • Output is liquid to semi-formed
  • Usually constructed as a loop
  • Usually temporary1,2,3

Transverse Colostomy

  • In the descending colon
  • A more common type of colostomy
  • Output is semi-formed to formed due to more water being absorbed while in the ascending and transverse colons1,2,3

Descending Colostomy

  • In the lower left portion of the large intestine just before the rectum
  • Output is formed. All water has been absorbed in the previous areas of the intestines1,2,3

Sigmoid Colostomy

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