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Cancer Treat Rev. 2002 Aug;28(4):181-8.

Adjuvant therapy of resectable rectal cancer.

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Department of Radiation Oncology, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, 1275 York Avenue, New York, NY 10021, USA.


The two conventional treatments for clinically resectable rectal cancer are surgery followed by postoperative combined modality therapy and preoperative combined modality therapy followed by surgery and postoperative chemotherapy. Preoperative therapy (most commonly combined modality therapy) has gained acceptance as a standard adjuvant therapy. The potential advantages of the preoperative approach include decreased tumor seeding, less acute toxicity, increased radiosensitivity due to more oxygenated cells, and enhanced sphincter preservation. There are a number of new chemotherapeutic agents that have been developed for the treatment of patients with colorectal cancer. Phase I/II trials examining the use of new chemotherapeutic agents in combination with pelvic radiation therapy are in progress.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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