Further evaluation of colostomy in penetrating colon injury

Richard P. Gonzalez, Mark E. Falimirski, Michele R. Holevar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

44 Scopus citations


Our objective was to compare, in a randomized prospective format, complication rates associated with primary repair versus fecal diversion in penetrating colon injury. During a 72-month period, 181 patients with penetrating colon injuries were entered in a randomized prospective study at an urban Level I trauma center. After intraoperative identification of colon injuries, patients were randomized to a primary repair or a diversion group. Randomization was independent of previously identified risk factors, including severity of colon injury, presence of hypotension, blood loss, extent of fecal contamination, and time from injury to operation. Five patients initially entered in the study protocol were removed because they died in the immediate postoperative period (< 24 hours). One hundred seventy- six patients were studied, of which 89 were randomized to primary repair and 87 to diversion. The average age in the diversion group was 26.4 years and it was 28.0 years in the primary repair group (P > 0.05). The average Penetrating Abdominal Trauma Index for the diversion group was 22.3, and it was 23.7 for the primary repair group (P > 0.05). There were 18 (21%) septic related complications in the diversion group and 16 (18%) in the primary repair group (P > .05). With respect to risk factors, complication rates were not higher in one study group versus the other. We conclude that, in the civilian population, all penetrating colon injuries should be managed with primary repair.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)342-347
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Surgeon
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1 2000
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery

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