How Long Will I Have to Stay in the Hospital After Colon Cancer Surgery?

Dr. Kim discusses factors that determine hospital stay after colon cancer surgery.

4510961873Surgery is the main form of treatment for colon cancer. The part of the bowel containing the cancer is removed and the two ends of the bowel are then joined together. If it is not possible to rejoin the two ends then a colostomy or ileostomy may be required. To many people, surgery can conjure up images of pain and extended hospital stays and recovery.

Every patient is different, as Dr. Kim explains in this video. There are many factors that go into the length of a hospital stay after colon cancer surgery, including overall health before surgery and bowel movements after surgery. Expect to be closely monitored and ask your doctor any questions you may have. Being an empowered patient can make the process much easier and less stressful.

Hospital stays have shortened in recent years as technology and surgical techniques have improved. For many patients, it’s very unlikely that they will spend weeks in the hospital recovering. In this video, Dr. Kim goes over some of these determining factors for the length of a hospital stay after colon cancer surgery, and what patients can expect in general.

Video Transcript

Eugene M. Kim MD:  For most patients on average that would range anywhere from three to seven days depending on their recovery, obviously every patient and every person is different, probably the number one thing that I determine when the patient is ready to go home is when their bowel function returns after colon surgery because the natural reaction of the patient’s body after their colon surgery is the bowel goes to sleep and takes some time to wake up, so when that’s functioning again most of the time, the patients were able to go home once again that’s on average three to seven days following their colon operation.


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