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Randomized clinical trial comparing loop ileostomy and loop transverse colostomy for faecal diversion following total mesorectal excision. BJS 2002; 89: 704-708.

Published: 5th November 2002

Authors: W. L. Law, K. W. Chu, H. K. Choi


The aim of this study was to compare loop ileostomy and loop transverse colostomy as the preferred mode of faecal diversion following low anterior resection with total mesorectal excision for rectal cancer.


Patients who required proximal diversion after low anterior resection with total mesorectal excision were randomized to have either a loop ileostomy or a loop transverse colostomy. Postoperative morbidity, stoma‐related problems and morbidity following closure were compared.


From April 1999 to November 2000, 42 patients had a loop ileostomy and 38 had a loop transverse colostomy constructed following low anterior resection. Postoperative intestinal obstruction and prolonged ileus occurred more commonly in patients with an ileostomy (P = 0·037). There was no difference in time to resumption of diet, length of hospital stay following stoma closure and incidence of stoma‐related complications after discharge from hospital. A total of seven patients had intestinal obstruction from the time of stoma creation to stoma closure (six following ileostomy and one following colostomy; P = 0·01).


Intestinal obstruction and ileus are more common after loop ileostomy than loop colostomy. Loop transverse colostomy should be recommended as the preferred method of proximal faecal diversion. © 2002 British Journal of Surgery Society Ltd

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