Sigmoid colon

Medical Specialties: Family practice

Clinical Definition

Sigmoid colon is the section of the colon that leads to the rectum and anus. It makes an S-shaped curve. The colon's other segments are the cecum, ascending colon, transverse colon, and descending colon, with the entire length typically about six feet.

In Our Own Words

The sigmoid colon is the part of the colon, or large intestine, that is located right before the rectum. It looks like an S-shaped curve.


Digested food comes from the small intestine, enters the large intestine at the cecum, moves up the ascending colon, across the transverse colon, and down the descending colon, and then into the sigmoid colon and rectum. All the while, water is removed from the stool. The average colon is about six feet long, including all parts. 

Relevant Conditions
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  • Harvard Medical School. "Medical Dictionary of Health Terms." 2013. Accessed September 2013.
  • American College of Gastroenterology. "Colorectal Cancer Screening." Accessed September 2013.
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. "Colorectal Cancer Glossary." Accessed September 2013.
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