Surgery is the primary treatment option for colon cancer, and consists of removing a piece of your colon and reconnecting the two sections. Most surgeries can be performed with minimally invasive techniques, offering the benefits of smaller incisions, less pain after surgery, a shorter hospital stay, and faster recovery. Your treatment path will depend on the extent of your cancer. If your colon cancer is advanced, you may need chemotherapy in addition to surgery. We will assemble a multidisciplinary team to care for you, using the most modern therapies and surgical skills available today.
We have a high cure rate for colon cancer that is caught early, and most patients retain their bowel function. Colostomies (“bags”) are generally not required for colon cancer. Even if your colon cancer is advanced, you can be treated successfully with our aggressive treatment approach. For example if your cancer has spread throughout your abdomen, we use a unique treatment option called hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy (HIPEC) to eliminate the majority of microscopic cancer cells that might remain after surgery.
Our physicians are faculty members at the University of Minnesota Medical School and are involved in colorectal cancer research at Masonic Cancer Center, University of Minnesota. Ask your doctor about participating in one of our clinical trials.
Early detection is important and screening tests can help detect colon and rectal polyps before they become cancerous. The American Cancer Society recommends men and women begin colorectal screening at age 50. The University of Minnesota has been a pioneer in the colorectal cancer screening, and our experts are among the region's most respected providers. You should discuss with your healthcare provider the advantages of the different screening tests and how often they should be performed. If you have a parent or a sibling who has had colon cancer or multiple polyps, your healthcare provider may want to screen you at an earlier age and more often.