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Colon Cancer

Infection After Reversal of Colostomy

02/24/2009

Question:

My sister was diagnosed with stage 2 rectal cancer. They reversed her colostomy in October and she has had severe pain ever since. Recently an abcess appeared and they have been draining that but now they have told her there is an infection at the site of the re-connection and the only thing they do is perform a permanant colostomy. Does this sound correct? I can`t believe that is the only option available to her. I realize that is is difficult to form an opinion without knowing her history but any information you can give me would be greatly appreciated. I feel as though the doctors are giving up on her.

Answer:

Thank you for visiting NetWellness. On this site, we try to answer general questions about health but cannot diagnose or recommend treatment. You appear to have some very, very specific questions about your sister, which can only be answered properly by a physician who is familiar with her history, physical exam, and test results. Your questions about testing results, or the risks, benefits, and alternatives for proposed treatments of this condition need to be directed to your sister's treating physician(s). You should insist that they answer these questions in a way that you are both able to understand before consenting to any treatment. If her physician is unable to help her understand these issues, she should get a second opinion. Take care.

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Response by:

James I Merlino, MD James I Merlino, MD
Assistant Professor of Surgery
School of Medicine
Case Western Reserve University