- How is colorectal cancer treated?
- Surgery for colorectal cancer
- Radiation therapy for colorectal cancer
- Chemotherapy for colorectal cancer
- Targeted therapies for colorectal cancer
- Clinical trials for colorectal cancer
- Complementary and alternative therapies for colorectal cancer
- Treatment by stage of colon cancer
- Treatment by stage of rectal cancer
- More treatment information about colorectal cancer
How is colorectal cancer treated?
Making treatment decisions
The first part of this section describes the various types of treatments used for colon and rectal cancers. This is followed by a description of the most common approaches used for these cancers based on the stage of the cancer.
The main types of treatment that can be used for colon and rectal cancer are:
Depending on the stage of the cancer, 2 or more of these types of treatment may be combined at the same time or used after one another.
After the cancer is found and staged, your cancer care team will discuss your treatment options with you. It is important to take time and think about your possible choices. In choosing a treatment plan, one of the most important factors is the stage of the cancer. Other factors to consider include your overall health, the likely side effects of the treatment, and the probability of curing the disease, extending life, or relieving symptoms.
When considering your treatment options it is often a good idea to seek a second opinion, if possible. This may provide you with more information and help you feel more confident about the treatment plan you have chosen. It is also important to know that your chances for having the best possible outcome are highest in the hands of a medical team that is experienced in treating colorectal cancer.
Last Medical Review: 05/24/2012
Last Revised: 01/17/2013