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Rectal Cancer Treatment (Patient) (cont.)

Treatment Options by Stage

A link to a list of current clinical trials is included for each treatment section. For some types or stages of cancer, there may not be any trials listed. Check with your doctor for clinical trials that are not listed here but may be right for you.

Stage 0 (Carcinoma in Situ)

Treatment of stage 0 may include the following:

  • Simple polypectomy.
  • Local excision.
  • Resection (when the tumor is too large to remove by local excision).
  • Internal or external radiation therapy.

Check for U.S. clinical trials from NCI's list of cancer clinical trials that are now accepting patients with stage 0 rectal cancer. For more specific results, refine the search by using other search features, such as the location of the trial, the type of treatment, or the name of the drug. General information about clinical trials is available from the NCI Web site.

Stage I Rectal Cancer

Treatment of stage I rectal cancer may include the following:

  • Local excision.
  • Resection.
  • Resection with radiation therapy and chemotherapy before or after surgery.

Check for U.S. clinical trials from NCI's list of cancer clinical trials that are now accepting patients with stage I rectal cancer. For more specific results, refine the search by using other search features, such as the location of the trial, the type of treatment, or the name of the drug. General information about clinical trials is available from the NCI Web site.

Stage II Rectal Cancer

Treatment of stage II rectal cancer may include the following:

  • Resection plus a combination of chemotherapy and radiation therapy before or after surgery.
  • Resection with or without chemotherapy after surgery.
  • A clinical trial of a new treatment.

Check for U.S. clinical trials from NCI's list of cancer clinical trials that are now accepting patients with stage II rectal cancer. For more specific results, refine the search by using other search features, such as the location of the trial, the type of treatment, or the name of the drug. General information about clinical trials is available from the NCI Web site.

Stage III Rectal Cancer

Treatment of stage III rectal cancer may include the following:

  • Resection plus a combination of chemotherapy and radiation therapy before or after surgery.
  • Resection with or without chemotherapy after surgery.
  • A clinical trial of a new treatment.

Check for U.S. clinical trials from NCI's list of cancer clinical trials that are now accepting patients with stage III rectal cancer. For more specific results, refine the search by using other search features, such as the location of the trial, the type of treatment, or the name of the drug. General information about clinical trials is available from the NCI Web site.

Stage IV and Recurrent Rectal Cancer

Treatment of stage IV and recurrent rectal cancer may include the following:

  • Resection with or without a combination of radiation therapy and chemotherapy before surgery.
  • Resection or pelvic exenteration, as palliative therapy to relieve symptoms and improve the quality of life.
  • Radiation therapy, chemotherapy, or a combination of both, as palliative therapy to relieve symptoms and improve the quality of life.
  • Chemotherapy to control the growth of the tumor.
  • Placement of a stent to help keep the rectum open if it is partly blocked by the tumor, as palliative therapy to relieve symptoms and improve the quality of life.
  • Systemic chemotherapy with or without monoclonal antibody therapy, such as bevacizumab.
  • A clinical trial of a new anticancer drug.

Treatment of rectal cancer that has spread to other organs depends on which organ the cancer has spread to.

  • Treatment for areas of cancer that have spread to the liver includes the following:
    • Cryosurgery or radiofrequency ablation.
    • Chemoembolization or systemic chemotherapy.
    • Internal radiation therapy.
    • Surgery to remove the tumor. Chemotherapy may be given before surgery to shrink the tumor.
    • A clinical trial of chemoembolization combined with radiation therapy to the tumors in the liver.
  • Treatment for areas of cancer that has spread to the lung or ovaries is surgery.

Check for U.S. clinical trials from NCI's list of cancer clinical trials that are now accepting patients with stage IV rectal cancer and recurrent rectal cancer. For more specific results, refine the search by using other search features, such as the location of the trial, the type of treatment, or the name of the drug. General information about clinical trials is available from the NCI Web site.

eMedicineHealth Public Information from the National Cancer Institute

This information is produced and provided by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National Cancer Institute via the Internet web site at http://cancer.gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER

This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

Some material in CancerNet™ is from copyrighted publications of the respective copyright claimants. Users of CancerNet™ are referred to the publication data appearing in the bibliographic citations, as well as to the copyright notices appearing in the original publication, all of which are hereby incorporated by reference.





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