Colon cancer is one of the leading types of cancer found in adult men and women in the United States. Most cases of colon cancer begin as small polyps (clumps of cells), which produce few symptoms. This is why regular screening tests to help prevent colon cancer are extremely important. At the UVM Cancer Center, our expert physicians are specially trained in advanced technology to diagnose and treat colon cancer.
Colon Cancer Care at UVM Medical Center
Our gastrointestinal cancer clinic provides a complete evaluation of each patient and quickly develops a personalized treatment plan.
- Our physicians serve as faculty at the Larner College of Medicine at UVM and are on the forefront of colon cancer diagnosis and treatment options.
- We provide services for your colon cancer treatment and diagnosis in a confidential and comforting environment.
Colon Cancer Diagnosis
Our team of specialists will come to an accurate and quick diagnosis of your colon cancer (often in one day), using one or more of these tests:
- A colonoscopy, which is an examination of the large intestine (colon) using a flexible scope (called colonoscope) that is attached to a video camera and monitor. If any suspicious areas are found, your doctor will then pass surgical tools through the tube to take tissue samples (called biopsies) for later analysis.
- A barium enema uses dye and X-rays to take a picture of your colon.
- A virtual colonoscopy uses X-rays and computers (computed tomography [CT or CAT] scan or magnetic resonance imaging [MRI]) to take two- or three-dimensional pictures of the inside lining of your colon and rectum.
Colon Cancer Treatments
Depending on the severity (stage) of your colon cancer, our specialists at the UVM Cancer Center will recommend a variety of treatments:
- Colonoscopy or Endoscopic Removal of Colorectal Polyps - If your colon cancer is early-stage, small and confined to a polyp, your doctor may be able to remove it completely during a colonoscopy or endoscopy.
- Chemotherapy - Chemotherapy treats colon cancer by destroying cancer cells using different types of medication.
- Radiation Therapy - Radiation therapy uses high-energy beams, such as X-rays and protons, to destroy cancer cells.
- Surgery - Colon removal surgery (called colectomy) may be recommended if your colon cancer has grown into or through your colon. A partial colectomy removes the cancerous part of your colon and some normal tissue on either side of the cancer as well as nearby lymph nodes.
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