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Darm / Intestine

In this section you will be able to find information the surgical procedures for colorectal cancer. This information is organized according to the subheadings with links on this page.

Anatomy of the intestine

Anatomy of the intestine

Anatomy and function of the intestine
The small intestine is made up of three segments, which form a passage from your stomach (the opening between your stomach and small intestine is called the pylorus) to your large intestine:
– The duodenum, a short section that takes the semi-digested food from the stomach. The secretion of bile and pancreatic fluids here continues the digestion of proteins and fats.
– The jejunum, middle part of the small intestine
– The ileum, where most of the nutrients from your food are absorbed before emptying into the large intestine. A valve prevents a backflow from the large intestine to the small intestine.
The total length of the small intestine is 4 to 5 meters.

The large intestine is made up of the following parts:
– The cecum is located in right lower quadrant of the abdomen and is a pouch-like structure that receives the digested liquid from the ileum and passes it on to the colon. The appendix is connected to this part of the large intestine.
– The colon travels from the right lower quadrant of the abdomen up to the liver, ascending colon, where it makes a curve to the left. This part is the transverse colon which will curve downwards when near the spleen towards the left lower quandrant, descending colon. Here it will become the sigmoid, which is the s-shaped end of the colon and empties in the rectum.
– The rectum is the last part of the digestive tract with a length of approximately 20 cm. Leftover waste collects here, expanding the rectum until you go to the bathroom.
The total length of the large intestine is approximately 1,5 meter and is situated in the abdomen. Most of it is covered with peritoneum and therefore lays intra-peritoneal. The rectum is situated in the pelvis and lays retro-peritoneal.

The wall of the intestine consists of several layers. The most inner layer of the intestine is the mucosa, where glands produce mucus. This mucosal layer is surrounded by connective tissue with vessels for a good vascularization. The outer layer consists of two muscular layers.
Digestion of food mainly takes place in the small intestine, nevertheless fibers, water and salts cannot be processed here. These will be digested in the large intestine. Fibers are digested with the help of bacteria and nutrients, water and salts are taken up via the mucosal layer of the intestine. This leads to thickening of the feces.