Uruguay revive World Cup hopes
With two games to come in October, Uruguay climbed back to sixth in the South American group, within reach of the four automatic qualifying berths and one place shy of fifth, which is valid for a last-chance playoff against a CONCACAF team.
The loss left Colombia sagging at seventh, a point behind Uruguay.
The Colombians started in a flurry with a clear chance to striker Adrian Ramos in the first minute, but five minutes later Uruguay took the lead through striker Luiz Suarez, who scored on a defensive error, lifting the ball with the inside of his foot to the right hand corner over keeper Agustin Julio.
Uruguay were reduced to 10 men when defender Carlos Valdez was dismissed for a harsh tackle on John Viafara in the 30th minute.
Colombia took advantage and picked up the pace controlling the ball in midfield but could not capitalise on several chances before the end of the first half.
Only a minute into the second, Colombian striker Teofilo Gutierrez was sent off, but his team mates rallied to score a 63rd-minute equaliser through a Jackson Martinez header.
Andres Scotti restored Uruguay's advantage in the 76th minute, however, and an 87th minute goal by substitute Sebastian Eguren sealed the win.