LifeCare ABS laparoscopic surgery for colorectal cancer
Rectal or colon cancers involve the large intestine. The last 10-15 inches of the large intestine, called the rectum is a hollow organ. Its basic function being housing of stool, waiting to be evacuated from the body via the anus. Rectal tumors occurring in this part usually spread locally. This implies thay they can affect the tissues of the anus, pelvis and even the neighboring organs such as the bladder, pelvic bones or reproductive organs.
Rectal cancers usually start appearing as a polyp in the rectum. The symptoms vary depending upon the size of the growing mass. As it grows, following symptoms are felt
- Fullness in the rectum
- Constant urge to have a bowel movement
- Pressure in the rectum
- A blockage that makes the stool thin or ribbon-like as they pass the tumor
- Blood in the stool
- Feeling of incomplete bowels after a bowel movement
- A painful spasm or cramping sensation in the anus
Common diagnosis and tests for rectal cancer include
Digital rectal examination or DRE where your doctor uses gloved finger to feel for masses in the rectum. However, not all lumps and masses felt are cancerous and on the other hand, some cancerous masses may get missed during a DRE. Hence more affirmative tests become necessary. These include
- X-ray, such as a barium enema
- Colonoscopy (virtual or endoscopic)
Laparoscopic surgery for colorectal cancer
Treatment of rectal cancer is usually focused on restoring or maintaining the bowel function if possible. Surgery is the foremost option. It can be used in combination with radiation and chemotherapy in case of large rectal cancers, where these treatments can help reduce the size of the tumour before removal. Small, non-invasive tumors can simply be removed through a colonoscopy or sigmoidoscopy.
Laparoscopic surgeries to remove rectal cancers include
- Anterior resection
- Abdominoperineal resection
A resection is opening and cutting the tumor out. Many different types of resection surgeries are performed for rectal cancer depending upon the size, location of the cancer and the approach taken to get to the rectum. The surgeon might have to cut out the entire rectum as well as the final portion of the colon (anal sphincter ). If this must be removed, an artificial opening is created in the abdomen, called stoma, where stool can be expelled.
- Pelvic exenteration is the term given to removal of affected pelvic organs during surgery. If the bladder, colon or reproductive organs are diseased, they can be removed during the abdominal resection.
Contact us today to know more about laparoscopic surgery for colorectal disorders.