What is an intestinal anastomosis?

An intestinal anastomosis is a surgical procedure in which the surgeon connects to parts of the intestines after removing a portion that has been damaged, diseased, necrotized or perforated.
Damage to a part of the intestines can occur from a variety of reasons, including neoplasia, trauma, volvulus, intussusception, abscesses, foreign bodies (pets love to swallow non-edible objects), hernia, chronic constipation, ulcerations, and other conditions. It is very important to determine the primary cause of the damage to the intestines in order to prevent events like these from ever happening again.

How is an intestinal anastomosis performed?

This surgery can be performed with staples, sutures or even anastomotic devices. It can also be fortified with graft techniques to reduce the chance of post-op complications and leakage into the peritoneum.

The post-surgical complications can be expected in the form of dehiscence, peritonitis due to a leakage at the anastomosis site or necrosis of the connected intestinal tissue, short-bowel syndrome or a recurrence of the clinical symptoms.

In the video below, you can watch Dr. Knopp perform an intestinal anastomosis on a cat.

If you liked this veterinary surgery video, visit our blog and watch “Thoracic wall repair in a dog – Surgery Video“.