Colorectal Cancer Surgery
The following describes surgical methods for treating colorectal cancer. For specific information regarding your health and medical care options, please contact your Hurley physician or medical professional.
Several surgery options
When polyps or small colorectal cancer tumors are detected in their early stages, it is often possible to remove them using the colonoscope, the same tool that is used to visually detect abnormal growths in the lower intestine and rectum. This eliminates the need for a surgeon to create an incision in the abdomen. Typically, for early stage cancers, the cancerous tissue is removed along with a small section of the surrounding colon. Polyps are removed by cutting across the base of the polyp’s stalk, or portion of the polyp that connects it to the intestine.
For other cancers, minimally invasive surgery may provide an effective approach to physical removal of the cancer. Using a laparoscope, a small tube with a lens on the end, the surgeon can enter the bowel through a small incision and remove the cancerous tumors and tissue. This form of surgery typically results in less post-operative pain and scarring, reduced need for pain medication, a quicker return to normal bowel function, and better cosmetic results.
Not every patient or cancer is an ideal candidate for minimally invasive surgery. For more advanced cancers, certain types of cancer, and cancers that have spread to other areas of the colon or rectum, surgery is often the recommended method for removing diseased tissue. The more extensive form of colorectal cancer surgery is called a bowel resection. In a bowel resection procedure, the surgeon cuts into the abdomen to reach the portion of the intestine or rectum in which the cancer is found. The surgeon will remove the cancer and nearby areas of the bowel. Afterward, the remaining ends of the colon or rectum are sewn back together to form a continuous section of bowel.
Your surgeon and oncologist will consult with you to determine the most appropriate surgical options for your individual situation, and to provide you with information on pre-operative preparation and post-operative care and recovery.