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J-Pouch Surgery

J-Pouch surgery treats severe disease or injury to the large intestine (colon). This complex procedure is also called proctocolectomy and ileal-anal pouch surgery. Surgeons remove the large intestine and most of the rectum.

The surgery treats severe ulcerative colitis, colorectal polyps or other digestive conditions – including some that are cancerous or can lead to cancer. If you have this procedure, doctors remove diseased or damaged parts of your colon.

J-pouch surgery leaves the anus and anal sphincter muscle in place. This enables bowel movements through the anus. Because it’s an involved surgery, you may have two separate procedures.

The Procedure

Your doctor will discuss procedures, benefits and risks. Your care team provides further instructions and answers. Before surgery, a doctor administers general anesthesia so you sleep through the procedure.

Surgery includes these stages:

  • Your surgeon makes a cut on your abdomen to remove your large intestine first and then the rectum. The anus and anal sphincter remain in place.
  • Your surgeon makes a pouch from the last section of your small intestine and attaches this to your anus.

Temple Health surgeons may do this procedure laparoscopically. Using a few small incisions, doctors insert tiny camera-guided instruments. Recovery is faster with less discomfort. Doctors sometimes make a larger cut so a surgeon can assist by hand.

If you have an ileostomy (surgically created opening), your surgeon closes it during the last stage of J-pouch surgery.

Temple Health Expertise

At Temple Health, our specialists work together to manage severe digestive conditions, including precancerous or cancerous disease. With decades of experience in gastroenterology and surgery, we understand the complex problems of digestive and related conditions. Our highlights include:

  • Leading doctors – “Top Doctors” and Best Doctors in America® rank Temple Health physicians among the region’s most outstanding healthcare providers. Learn about your doctors and care team.
  • Acute-care hospitalTemple University Hospital (TUH) is one of the region's most respected academic medical centers. As Temple Health’s acute-care cornerstone, TUH provides exceptional cross-specialty care. Jeanes Hospital provides advanced surgical services in a convenient, community-based setting.

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Find a doctor near you, request an appointment, or call 800-TEMPLE-MED (800-836-7536) today.