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Int J Surg Oncol. 2012;2012:247107. doi: 10.1155/2012/247107. Epub 2012 Jun 25.

Approach to rectal cancer surgery.

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1
Hepatobiliary and Surgical Oncology Unit, UNSW Department of Surgery, St George Hospital, Kogarah, NSW 2217, Australia.

Abstract

Rectal cancer is a distinct subset of colorectal cancer where specialized disease-specific management of the primary tumor is required. There have been significant developments in rectal cancer surgery at all stages of disease in particular the introduction of local excision strategies for preinvasive and early cancers, standardized total mesorectal excision for resectable cancers incorporating preoperative short- or long-course chemoradiation to the multimodality sequencing of treatment. Laparoscopic surgery is also increasingly being adopted as the standard rectal cancer surgery approach following expertise of colorectal surgeons in minimally invasive surgery gained from laparoscopic colon resections. In locally advanced and metastatic disease, combining chemoradiation with radical surgery may achieve total eradication of disease and disease control in the pelvis. Evidence for resection of metastases to the liver and lung have been extensively reported in the literature. The role of cytoreductive surgery and hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy for peritoneal metastases is showing promise in achieving locoregional control of peritoneal dissemination. This paper summarizes the recent developments in approaches to rectal cancer surgery at all these time points of the disease natural history.

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