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Dr. Arora talking to a patient
Dr. Arora talking to a patient

Gastrointestinal (GI) Cancer Program

We offer an uncommon level of gastrointestinal (GI) cancer care in South Texas. Our expertise spans rare and common forms of the disease, allowing more people to receive care close to home.

GI cancer affects the organs of your digestive system, such as the stomach, liver, colon and rectum. At Mays Cancer Center, home to UT Health San Antonio MD Anderson Cancer Center, our doctors are helping more patients reclaim wellness with a personalized approach that includes advanced therapies. And because we treat a high volume of patients, many with complex cancers, you can rely on us for precise care that brings healing. 

Gastrointestinal cancers we treat

Why choose us for gastrointestinal cancer care?

Highlights of our program include: 

  • Expertise in rare cancers: Because many of our doctors have specialized training in GI cancer, we skillfully treat rare conditions, like peritoneal carcinomatosis. We diagnose and treat problems such as anal cancer, neuroendocrine cancer and bile duct cancer. As a result, you’ll find more care options. Find out more about the cancer types we treat.
  • Advanced therapies: We offer cutting-edge treatments, including minimally invasive and robotic surgery, that protect nearby healthy tissue. These techniques remove cancer through small incisions and with a high degree of precision. We also deliver lifesaving procedures such as transplants for liver cancer.
  • Genetic testing and counseling: Some GI cancers, including certain types of colorectal and pancreatic cancer, are passed down in families. Genetic testing and counseling enable us to deliver care and services that are most appropriate for your needs. For example, we may recommend chemotherapy drugs that are more effective in genetic cancers or screening tests to check for signs of other cancers. 
  • Specialized care for older adults: As people age, they may respond differently to cancer treatments or have other health challenges that complicate their recovery. Our GI cancer experts understand and meet those needs. We adjust care plans to prevent setbacks and coordinate additional support when necessary. Find out more about geriatric oncology.

Leading GI cancer care in San Antonio

Our partnership with MD Anderson Cancer Center brings the highest levels of cancer expertise to San Antonio and 38 counties in South Texas. MD Anderson is one of the world’s most respected cancer programs. 

Your doctors at Mays Cancer Center partner with MD Anderson experts to develop care plans for complex cancers. This level of coordination helps you get second opinions from renowned gastrointestinal cancer specialists close to home.

Get more information about our partnership with MD  Anderson

Our team approach to GI cancer

Our highly skilled GI cancer team coordinates your treatment, with therapies tailored to your needs. For some cancers, including pancreatic, liver and stomach, you may see several specialists in a single clinic visit. 

Our gastrointestinal cancer team includes:

  • Gastroenterologists evaluate suspicious growths and treat complications without surgery, using instruments we pass through your throat or rectum.
  • Interventional radiologists use imaging technology to help diagnose cancer and perform nonsurgical treatments, such as ablation and endoscopic mucosal resection. These therapies safely remove early-stage cancers that have not grown past the surface layer of tissue.
  • Medical oncologists deliver cancer-fighting drugs (chemotherapy), targeted therapy or immunotherapy. We stay current on advancements in the field and offer years of experience. That means you can be confident you’ll receive the medications that are most appropriate for your diagnosis. 
  • Dietitians can help you get proper nutrition, especially if you are having difficulty eating. We may suggest special foods or liquid nutrition to support your well-being and keep your care moving forward. 
  • Pathologists, doctors who specialize in diagnosing medical problems, confirm or rule out a GI cancer diagnosis. These specialists also determine the cancer type by examining tissue under a microscope.
  • Radiation oncologists use the latest techniques to destroy cancer cells with radiation. You have access to technologies that deliver focused treatments and protect healthy tissue, so you experience fewer side effects.
  • Surgeons remove cancer using the latest available techniques. Our team includes surgeons who specialize in procedures to treat liver, pancreatic and colon cancer.

Research and clinical trials for gastrointestinal cancer

Our research efforts give you access through clinical trials to new cancer drugs and innovative care methods, such as targeted therapy. Targeted therapy attacks only cancer cells while preserving healthy ones.

We are the only National Cancer Institute (NCI)-designated cancer center in Central and South Texas. This recognition means you can trust our commitment to a safe clinical trial experience. 

Our team includes GI cancer clinical trial coordinators. These experts explain the clinical trials you are eligible for and how they can help you get better. 

Learn more about cancer research and clinical trials

Care location

Zeller Building

  • Gastrointestinal Oncology | 6th Floor
  • Colon and Rectal Surgery | 6th Floor 

Urschel Building

  • University Health Liver Tumor and Pancreas Tumor Center | 2nd Floor