The CentraState Colon and Rectal Cancer Program Advantage
The Colon and Rectal Cancer Program at CentraState Medical Center offers state-of-the-art services, expertise, and technology for detecting, diagnosing, treating and helping patients recover from colon cancer or rectal cancer. Because our focus is on the whole person, not simply the disease, we also offer guidance on maintaining colon and rectal health—including complementary therapies to support self-healing and emotional well being, while helping patients maximize the benefits of conventional treatment.
Our multi-disciplinary, integrated approach assures colon and rectal cancer patients, as well as their families, continuity of care and the convenience of finding everything under one roof in a friendly, attentive environment.
The Colon and Rectal Cancer Team
The colorectal cancer team is led by an outstanding group of board-certified physicians specializing in Medical Oncology, Gastroenterology, Surgery, and Radiation Oncology.
Trained at leading academic medical centers, these colon and rectal cancer specialists combine their expertise to evaluate and treat all stages of colon cancer and rectal cancer. The team also includes Magnet-designated nurses credentialed in chemotherapy and certified in cancer care, and other professionals focused on patients’ physical, emotional and spiritual needs.
Colon and Rectal Diagnosis and Staging
To verify the existence of colon cancer or rectal cancer, a biopsy will be done on any part of the colon or rectum that does not look normal. For a biopsy, the doctor removes a small piece of the tissue from the area of concern. This is done during a colonoscopy, which is performed as a same-day procedure in our Ambulatory Services Department.
Tissue samples are promptly analyzed on site in our Pathology Department. If colon cancer or rectal cancer is found, further sample analysis will help predict how aggressively it may behave and how to direct therapies to stop it.
Additional imaging tests may be needed to determine the stage (extent) of the colon cancer or rectal cancer. All are performed on site in the Radiology Department at CentraState Medical Center.
Colon and Rectal Cancer Treatment Options
At CentraState, colorectal cancer patients receive an individualized treatment plan based on his or her unique age, life expectancy, health status, lifestyle and personal preference; the severity of the colon cancer or rectal cancer, and whether it is a recurrence of a pre-existing cancer; and potential complications or side effects of each therapeutic approach.
The Colon and Rectal Cancer Program at CentraState Medical Center offers these leading treatments for colon cancer and rectal cancer:
- Radiation Therapy—External beam radiotherapy, including 3D conformal radiotherapy, intensity-modulated radiation therapy, and image-guided radiation therapy.
- Surgery—For early stage colon cancer, a colectomy or segmental resections are often performed. Usually the cancer and a piece of normal colon on either side of the cancer (as well as nearby lymph nodes) are removed. The two ends of the colon are then sewn back together. This procedure can be performed through an incision in the abdomen or depending on the cancer stage, a laparoscopic-assisted colectomy (a series of smaller incisions, which produces less scarring and faster healing). For rectal cancer, there are several surgical procedures that may be performed. It depends on the rectal cancer location and stage.
- Chemotherapy—Medicines that kill or halt the growth of cancer cells. This approach generally is used to relieve symptoms and prolong survival when the cancer has spread from its place of origin.
Some patients may be eligible to participate in a clinical trial in which they receive the latest treatments for colon cancer or rectal cancer before it becomes publicly available.
Complementary, Supportive Services
Patients may find dealing with the emotional and physical effects of colon cancer and rectal cancer to be stressful, even isolating. To help them cope, CentraState Medical Center offers an array of supportive services, including wellness programs and support groups.