DR BARRY SLAVEN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DR BARRY SLAVEN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Distended colon explorative laparotomy. Surgeons performing an exploratory laparotomy to assess a distended (enlarged) colon caused by ischaemic colitis. A laparotomy involves making a large incision in the abdominal wall to gain access to the abdominal cavity. Here, it is being performed to examine the patient's colon (large intestine), which has become distended due to ischaemic colitis. Ischaemic colitis is the inflammation and injury of the large intestine as a result of inadequate blood supply. Here, a loop of the abnormal colon (dark, lower centre) can be seen. The small bowel (pink, left) is normal.
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