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Rectal Cancer Surgery

Resection and Colostomy Surgery
If the doctor is not able to sew the rectum back together, a stoma (an opening) is made on the outside of the body for waste to pass through. This procedure is called a colostomy. A bag is placed around the stoma to collect the waste. Sometimes, the colostomy is needed only until the rectum has healed, and then it can be reversed. If the doctor needs to remove the entire rectum, however, the colostomy may be permanent.
Even if the doctor removes all the cancer that can be seen at the time of the operation, some people may be given chemotherapy or radiation therapy after rectal cancer surgery to kill any cancer cells that are left. Treatment given after surgery to increase the chances of a cure is called adjuvant therapy.

Recovering From Rectal Cancer Surgery

People may feel weak or tired after surgery for rectal cancer, and the recovery time afterwards varies from person to person. The side effects will depend on the extent of the rectal cancer, the person's general health, and other factors. Most people have pain, which may be controlled with medicine, for the first few days after surgery. People should discuss their options for pain relief with their healthcare provider.
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Treatment for Rectal Cancer

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