Human body consists of the digestive system whose main function is of digestion and absorption. The role of digestive system is to breakdown food into smaller molecules and then it gets absorbed by the body. It is made up of the gastrointestinal tract along with the organs that are needed for digestion such as tongue, salivary glands, pancreas, liver, gallbladder etc. There are various conditions that may affect the working of our digestive system. The branch of medicine that focuses on the digestive system and its disorders is known as Gastroenterology.
Diseases that affect our gastrointestinal tract are the focus of this specialty. Doctors practicing in this field are known as Gastroenterologists. The surgery that is related to these disorders is known as gastrointestinal surgery. Our digestive system is convoluted but even small issues like stress can disrupt its functioning. There are different reasons which can disrupt functioning of our digestive system. Some of the reasons are –
1. Constipation – in this condition, it is difficult to have a bowel movement. Strain is caused due to constipation.
2. Irritable bowel syndrome – it is a condition in which our colon muscle contracts more often in people than in people without IBS.
3. Structural gastrointestinal disorders – Hemorrhoids, diverticular diseases, colon polyps, colon cancer, inflammatory bowel diseases etc. are some of the examples of gastrointestinal disorders. In this, bowel looks abnormal and doesn’t work properly.
4. Anal fissures – these are splits or cracks in the lining of the anal opening. It is one of the most painful problems.
5. Colon polyps and cancer is one of the most common forms of cancer. Polyp is the term which is used to describe a growth on the inner surface of the colon.
To treat problems of our digestive system, there are several different surgeries. Some of the surgeries are –
1. Laparoscopic surgery – it is a minimally invasive form of surgery in which small incisions are made in the abdomen to allow access ports to be inserted. Laparoscope is then inserted through these ports. The images are then transmitted on the video monitor. There are different functions that are performed with this type of surgery –
a. Proctosigmoidectomy – it is the surgical removal of a diseased section of the rectum and sigmoid colon is used to treat cancerous and non cancerous growth.
b. Ileocolectomy – in this, the last segment of the small intestine which is attached to the right side of the colon is also removed.
c. Rectopexy – in this procedure, stitches are used to secure the rectum in its proper position in cases of rectal prolapse.
2. Transoral Incisionless Fundoplication – it is an incision-less procedure for treating people with gastroesophageal reflux disease. To prevent reflux, a special device is used by the surgeon to reconstruct the anti-reflux valve at the entrance of the esophagus into the stomach to prevent reflux.
3. Halo ablation – this is a procedure which is used to treat Barrett’s esophagus, a condition which has the potential to turn into cancer. In this procedure, patient is under conscious sedation. An endoscope is then inserted into the patient’s mouth. Depending on the extent of the diseased tissue, one of an ablation catheter will be selected – a balloon mounted catheter or an endoscope mounted catheter.
It is used to examine the lining of the colon and rectum for the presence of colorectal cancer or polyps.
Small polyps are destroyed by fulguration. Larger polyps are removed with the help of a technique called snare polypectomy.
The procedure takes around 15-20 minutes. Pre and post operative care will take around 1.5-2 hours.
Unless there are any dietary restrictions, normal diet can be taken after the procedure.