If not properly recognized, the normal postoperative appearance of the pelvis following colorectal surgery can be misinterpreted as disease, including infection or recurrent tumor. However, multidetector computed tomography (CT) with the supplemental use of multiplanar reformation clearly demonstrates the expected postoperative anatomic changes in this setting. The high-resolution images achievable with multidetector CT enable the radiologist to play an important role in the postoperative assessment of patients following colon surgery. Whenever possible, the radiologist should be aware of the specific indication for the study, the type of surgery that was performed (ranging from segmental bowel excision to more extensive radical resection), and what anastomoses were created. This knowledge, as well as familiarity with the normal multidetector CT appearances of various postoperative complications, is critical for prompt diagnosis and appropriate management of these complications and for better differentiation of complications from normal findings.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging