Importance: Bridge to elective surgery using self-expandable metal stent (SEMS) placement is a debated alternative to emergency resection for patients with left-sided obstructive colon cancer because of oncologic concerns. A decompressing stoma (DS) might be a valid alternative, but relevant studies are scarce. Objective: To compare DS with SEMS as a bridge to surgery for nonlocally advanced left-sided obstructive colon cancer using propensity score matching. Design, Setting, and Participants: This national, population-based cohort study was performed at 75 of 77 hospitals in the Netherlands. A total of 4216 patients with left-sided obstructive colon cancer treated from January 1, 2009, to December 31, 2016, were identified from the Dutch Colorectal Audit and 3153 patients were studied. Additional procedural and intermediate-term outcome data were retrospectively collected from individual patient files, resulting in a median follow-up of 32 months (interquartile range, 15-57 months). Data were analyzed from April 7 to October 28, 2019. Exposures: Decompressing stoma vs SEMS as a bridge to surgery. Main Outcomes and Measures: Primary anastomosis rate, postresection presence of a stoma, complications, additional interventions, permanent stoma, locoregional recurrence, disease-free survival, and overall survival. Propensity score matching was performed according to age, sex, body mass index, American Society of Anesthesiologists score, prior abdominal surgery, tumor location, pN stage, cM stage, length of stenosis, and year of resection. Results: A total of 3153 of the eligible 4216 patients were included in the study (mean [SD] age, 69.7 [11.8] years; 1741 [55.2%] male); after exclusions, 443 patients underwent bridge to surgery (240 undergoing DS and 203 undergoing SEMS). Propensity score matching led to 2 groups of 121 patients each. Patients undergoing DS had more primary anastomoses (104 of 121 [86.0%] vs 90 of 120 [75.0%], P =.02), more postresection stomas (81 of 121 [66.9%] vs 34 of 117 [29.1%], P <.001), fewer major complications (7 of 121 [5.8%] vs 18 of 118 [15.3%], P =.02), and more subsequent interventions, including stoma reversal (65 of 113 [57.5%] vs 33 of 117 [28.2%], P <.001). After DS and SEMS, the 3-year locoregional recurrence rates were 11.7% for DS and 18.8% for SEMS (hazard ratio [HR], 0.62; 95% CI, 0.30-1.28; P =.20), the 3-year disease-free survival rates were 64.0% for DS and 56.9% for SEMS (HR, 0.90; 95% CI, 0.61-1.33; P =.60), and the 3-year overall survival rates were 78.0% for DS and 71.8% for SEMS (HR, 0.77; 95% CI, 0.48-1.22; P =.26). Conclusions and Relevance: The findings suggest that DS as bridge to resection of left-sided obstructive colon cancer is associated with advantages and disadvantages compared with SEMS, with similar intermediate-term oncologic outcomes. The existing equipoise indicates the need for a randomized clinical trial that compares the 2 bridging techniques.