Removing the Colon?

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New Member

Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 13
   Posted 3/21/2008 10:30 PM (GMT -6)   
I am 31 year old male that has had UC for about 10 years now and had a colonoscopy today.  Turns out that my left side of the colon is really a problem.  Severe colitis with the inside of the colon "carpeted with polyps".  The doc said that based on the severity we may have to move to take my colon out...
Does anyone have experice on this front?  At first I was like, "okay"...but now I am starting to freak out on the surgery....My doc says they would have to remove the whole colon?  I guess good new is that I am "cured" of colitis but bad news is that there are possiblites of complications due to the surgery.
Did anyone here go trough the same thing or have "the surgery"?  Thanks in advance.

Elite Member

Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 20577
   Posted 3/21/2008 11:55 PM (GMT -6)   
You should also post your question at the ostemy forum here at healingwell.

I hope you find what's best for you, it's different for everyone but from the majority of what I've read from peoples experiance it seems no one that I've come across has any regrets from having their colon removed, with the exception that they wished they'd done it sooner.

Keep in mind, there are also many emotional factors involved for many people too which for the most part seems to revolve around intimacy, clothing (bathing suits, tight clothing, ect) and how they veiw themselves physically so it is alot to have to weigh those things to being able to have your life back and not being totally controlled by BM's, pain, meds and such.

good luck with your decision, because ulitimately it is up to you.

My bum is broken....there's a big crack down the middle of it!  LOL  :)

Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 184
   Posted 3/22/2008 1:33 AM (GMT -6)   
There's a great site with message board dedicated to the j-pouch surgery:

I have crohn's and had my colon removed 3 years ago and I live with an illeostomy. Since you have UC you are propably going to have a 3 step surgery and the end result is a j-pouch. This is not a cure rather it is cutting out the disease. You are left with 2 centimeters of rectum and that means you still have uc and can still get rectal cancer. that is why patients are told to get an annual sigmoidoscopy and pinch for biopsy every 3 years. I have an aunt who had this surgery 15 years ago and has had no problems. Her son-in-law also had the surgery and he is doing well and it's been 3 years.

Where do you live? there are many excellent hospitals in the country that specialize in this surgery.

Crohn's and Ostomy in 2004

Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2006
Total Posts : 5698
   Posted 3/22/2008 9:47 AM (GMT -6)   

You aren't necessarily left with 2cm of rectal tissue of your surgeon opts for a mucosectomy.  I had the rectal tissue stripped from the cuff and have no disease.  Yes, I do have to get annual scopes and biopsies but I consider that reassurance and my risk for colon cancer is far less than it would have been had I kept my colon and rectum.

The number of steps for the surgery is dependent on your health and whether or not the patient is on prednisone.  If you go into surgery in good health and no recent prednisone usage it can be done in 1 step.  Two steps is for those who are ill and on prednisone and 3 steps are for those who are seriously ill or it's done in an emergency basis.  No surgeon can promise which surgery you will have, but can only make the decision when you are in the OR.


dx proctitis in 1987
dx UC in 1991, was stable until 1998

1998 started prednisone, asacol, pentasa, nortriptylene, ativan, 6MP, rowasa enemas and suppositories, hydrocortisone enemas, tried the SCD diet, being a vegetarian, omega 3s, flax, pranic healing, yoga, acupuncture, probiotics

2000 lost all my B-12 stores and became anemic

2001 opted for j-pouch surgery- now living life med-free

Regular Member

Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 459
   Posted 3/23/2008 2:04 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Viking
3 years ago I had the same problem as you are having. No medications were working. My bleeding could not stop. My doctor strongly advised me to have my colon removed. I was scared of the consequences and I followed Sheldon's vitamin E therapy and my bleeding stopped within 2 days.
I have not taken medications since and I feel great. I have mainly 2 bowel movements a day with a reasonable stool formation within minutes after I wake up in the mornings.
The following keeps me going
1) I take 200mcg of a combition of selenium and vitamin E in the morning.
2) One cup of cinnamon tea in the mornings and another cup in the evenings.
3) On glass of saffron immediately after tea
4) One glass of water with psyllium after everty 3 days
The saffron solution is for reducing my waist and moon face I got after taking pred.
My life has taken a 360 turn for the better since I stopped taking drugs.

Regular Member

Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 31
   Posted 3/23/2008 6:35 PM (GMT -6)   
VIKING...hi, hows it going.....
I have severe colitis...this is probably going to sound really silly - but with colitis - when you take pills (mouth) it treats the right side of the bowel - to treat the left side of the bowel - it has to be taken up the rear....
I think majority of people with colitis have most problems with the left side.
When mine flared up = i was treated with "ive gone blank" will find it out - and it was a liquid that you squirted into your rear end - I had to lay there for 30mins with legs higher then the rest of the body - and it worked - amazingly so - it was like a liquid to your specialist about it - surgery to me would always be the last resort.

New Member

Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 13
   Posted 3/23/2008 7:13 PM (GMT -6)   
sorry i meant to say my right side has the severe colitis. for those of you all that have lots of polyps is it possible to subside the polyps? or are they basically there for good.

Eva Lou
Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 3442
   Posted 3/24/2008 7:57 AM (GMT -6)   
I'm pretty sure the polyps ae there for good- they can only be surgically removed. Which probably isn't an option in your case, like mine, as removing all the polyps basically means removing the colon! What you shoudl ask your doctor is if the polyps are pseudopolyps or true polyps. I have tons of pseudopolyps, which is basically scar tissue that forms after a period of ulceration/inflammation. They are not cancerous, or precancerous. A true polyp is ...well, you know, precancerous, I think! However, the big problem with the pseudopolyps is that they make cancer detection virtually impossible.

diagnosed with UC '02
Asacol- 8 tabs/day
Remicade infusions
Imuran- 100mgs/day

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