Depending on the type, size and stage of your colorectal cancer, we can use surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy or a combination of treatments to remove or treat it. If the cancer is too widespread to remove it in its entirety, Mount Carmel offers palliative surgery, radiation therapy and chemotherapy to relieve symptoms. No matter the circumstances, our multidisciplinary team of physicians will present you with the best possible treatment options for your specific case.
The treatment for colon, rectal and anal cancer are very different based on the type of cancer and stage of disease. Your physician will create a customized treatment plan for your cancer.
Colon Cancer Stages
- Stage 0 colon cancer is when cancer is limited to the innermost lining of the colon.
- Treatment involves surgery to remove the tumor and a small amount of surrounding tissue. If the cancer is larger, then a more extensive surgery is required to remove the diseased section of the colon.
- Surgery that removes all of the cancer is considered curative.
- Stage I tumors have spread beyond the inner lining of the colon to the second and third layers and involve the inside wall of the colon. The cancer has not spread to the outer wall of the colon or outside the colon.
- Standard treatment involves surgery to remove the cancer and a small amount of tissue around the tumor. Additional treatments are not usually needed.
- Stage II colon cancers are larger and extend through the muscular wall of the colon but do not affect the lymph nodes.
- Standard treatment is surgery to remove the cancer and surrounding tissue.
- If you have stage II colon cancer your physician may reccomend chemotherapy or enrollment in a clinical trial.
- Stage III colon cancers have spread outside the colon to one or more lymph nodes. Tumors within the colon wall are classified as Dukes Stage C1 and those that have grown through the colon wall and spread are called Dukes Stage C2 cancers.
- Treatment involves surgery to remove the tumor and affected lymph nodes. After surgery, you will receive chemotherapy and possibly radiation therapy.
- Stage IV colon cancers have spread outside the colon to other parts of the body, commonly the liver or lungs. The tumor can be any size and lymph nodes may be affected.
- Treatment may include surgery to remove the tumor and surrounding tissue in the colon and may parts of other organs where the cancer may have spread.
- Chemotherapy or radiation may also be given to relieve symptoms.
- Monoclonal antibodies may also be used to target and destroy tumors.
Recurrent Colon Cancer
- Recurrent colon cancer is cancer that returns after treatment, either near the area of the initial cancer or in other organs, which is more likely in patients with more advanced cancer.
- Treatment may involve surgery to remove the cancer or chemotherapy.