Why choose us for rectal cancer care?
Rectal cancer requires specialized care from multiple specialists, and you’ll find it at Mays Cancer Center, home to UT Health San Antonio MD Anderson. Our team, which includes highly skilled colorectal surgeons and medical oncologists, uses the latest techniques for exceptional care close to home. These capabilities help you achieve the best possible results – even for rare cancers and growths in hard-to-reach areas.
Rectal cancer is one of many forms of gastrointestinal cancer we treat. Read more about our gastrointestinal cancer program.
What you need to know about rectal cancer
- Your rectum is part of the large intestine. It stores solid waste (stool) between bowel movements.
- Rectal cancer can be challenging to treat because the rectum is so close to other organs, such as the bladder.
- This type of cancer is more likely than colon cancer to spread to other organs or return after treatment.
- Mays Cancer Center has experience with difficult-to-treat rectal cancers, giving more patients hope for healing.
How to talk to your doctor about rectal cancer
A rectal cancer diagnosis causes some people to feel self-conscious. But don’t let this stop you from pursuing treatments that can save your life. Talk to us about these feelings, and we can help you put them to rest.
We also have detailed conversations with you about which therapies and services are best for your needs. Asking questions helps you learn what to expect and get the most from your care. You might want to ask your doctor about:
- Additional testing you may need to confirm a rectal cancer diagnosis or guide care decisions
- Cancer stage, the size of the cancer and whether it has spread, and what it means for your long-term health
- Treatment options, including any rectal cancer clinical trials you may be eligible for
- Potential treatment side effects and therapies to lessen their impact on your daily life
- Support to help you cope with the ways cancer may affect your mind, body and spirit
Bringing loved ones with you to appointments can lessen some of the stress you may be experiencing. They can assist you in making important decisions and help you remember care instructions.
Our team treats a broad range of rectal cancers, including:
- Adenocarcinoma affects the cells lining the surface of the rectum. This form of rectal cancer is common.
- Carcinoid tumors are a type of neuroendocrine tumor (NET). They can occur in many areas but often affect the lower intestines, including the rectum.
- Gastrointestinal stromal tumors form in cells lining the digestive tract. These tumors are a rare type of rectal cancer.
- Hereditary rectal cancer stems from abnormal gene changes (mutations) that are passed down in families.