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A 35-year-old member asked:

how does surgery for stage 1 rectal cancer work?

2 doctor answers8 doctors weighed in
Dr. Joseph Woods
Pathology 28 years experience
Through abdomen/anus: This is where the cancer does not go past the muscle layer. Surgery can cure this but there are risks. Surgery can be through the abdomen with or without surgery on the anus. The first way might need a temporary or permanent colostomy, an opening for expulsion of waste. The other way requires a permanent colostomy. Surgery may be done that just involves the anus, but that risks recurrence.
Dr. Prashant Sinha
General Surgery 19 years experience
Removal of the tumor: If the rectal cancer is very small and near the anus, some specialized surgeons can remove the tumor through the anus with special instruments - this is unusual to do. Most will use open or laparoscopic surgery to remove the piece of colon containing the tumor and reconnect the colon to itself using stitches or staples. If the tumor is too close to the sphincter it may not be reconnected.

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A 33-year-old member asked:

How does surgery affect people who have stage 3 rectal cancer?

2 doctor answers6 doctors weighed in
Dr. Paul Harper
General Surgery 52 years experience
Hard to say: Some people are cured and some are not. You can't predict who will be in each catergory. My dad had stage 3. Best chance for survival at that time was 5% for 5 years. He lived 25 years after surgeryand died at age 95. Go figure. All is not lost with the diagnosis of cancer.

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Last updated Mar 31, 2016
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