The use of a temporary loop ileostomy for fecal diversion in 15 patients with Crohn's disease is discussed. The indications for the use of ileostomy included both emergency and nonemergency situations. Emergency indications included cases of acute peritonitis secondary to perforated bowel or abscesses, and intestinal obstruction. In nonemergency settings ileostomy was used either in conjunction with other surgery that was thought to have a significant risk of anastomotic leakage or to prepare a patient for major resectional surgery. It was the impression of the author's that temporary loop ileostomy was a helpful adjunct in the management of certain difficult cases of Crohn's ileocolitis.