The rectum is the last 8 to 10 inches of the colon. It also called the large intestine or the large bowel.
Conditions of the Rectum
Some of the common conditions of the rectum that may require rectal surgery are:
- Rectal cancer and polyps
- Inflammatory bowel disease
- Ulcerative colitis
- Anal problems such as hemorrhoids, fistula, and fissures
- Rectal prolapse
- Rectal abscess
- Fecal incontinence
Rectal and colon cancer is one of the most common cancers.
Adenomatous polyps are groups of benign (non-canercous) cells that form on the rectum, and they are the beginning stage of most rectal cancers. For this reason, polyps are often removed before they become cancerous.
To diagnose rectal cancer, techniques used by your surgeon include:
- MRI (magnetic resonance imaging)
- Endorectal ultrasound
- PET (positron emission tomographic) scans
Rectal surgery may be used with radiation treatment and/or chemotherapy to treat cancer, such as when cancer is extensive and has spread beyond the anus, rectum or colon into other internal organs.