Skip to Content
Home > Wellness > Health Library > Ileostomy
An ileostomy is a surgical procedure that is used when the lower
part of the digestive system (the colon) is diseased or damaged and is not able
to function normally. An ileostomy allows body waste to leave the body through
a surgical opening.
In this procedure, a hole is made in the abdomen. Then a portion of
the small intestine (the ileum) is brought to an opening in the skin (a stoma).
Waste leaves the body through the stoma instead of the anus. The waste is collected in
a pouch attached to the stoma with adhesive.
Ileostomies may be done if all of the colon is removed
or diseased, such as from ulcerative colitis or Crohn's disease.
Current as of:
November 14, 2014
E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine & Arvydas D. Vanagunas, MD - Gastroenterology
To learn more about Healthwise, visit Healthwise.org.
© 1995-2015 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
I Want To...
Our interactive Decision Points guide you through making key health decisions by combining medical information with your personal information.
You'll find Decision Points to help you answer questions about:
Get started learning more about your health!
Our Interactive Tools can help you make smart decisions for a healthier life. You'll find personal calculators and tools for health and fitness, lifestyle checkups, and pregnancy.
Feeling under the weather?
Use our interactive symptom checker to evaluate your symptoms and determine appropriate action or treatment.