Rectal Cancer

Rectal cancer is a cancer located in the last several inches of the large intestine. At Mount Sinai, our surgeons believe rectal cancer is best treated with a multidisciplinary approach, in which our colorectal surgeons work closely with other specialists, such as medical oncologists and radiation oncologists, to customize the right care plan for you. We also focus on the newest minimally invasive techniques—including a robotic approach to transanal resection available only through clinical trials —which not only treat the cancer, but also help restore regular function of the rectum.

Surgery for Rectal Cancer

Factors including the stage of the rectal cancer and where it is located will help your surgeon determine what type of procedure is best for you.

Polypectomy: Performed during a colonoscopy in order to treat early cancers, a polypectomy is a procedure in which polyps are removed from the inner wall of the colon.

Local excision: This is a surgical procedure to remove early stage cancer as well as a small portion of surrounding tissue.

Transanal resection: Also called transanal excision, this procedure involves inserting surgical instruments into the anus and cutting through the rectal wall in order to remove the cancer. Mount Sinai is one of a small number of sites in the United States involved in a clinical trial examining the efficacy of the Flex® Robotic System for this transanal procedure, which allows surgeons to reach areas higher in the rectum, often requiring zero incision.

Transanal total mesorectal excision (taTME): This newly available, laparoscopic procedure uses a novel method (involving small, abdominal incisions as well as surgery through the anus) that more accurately and completely removes rectal cancer. To be involved in the clinical trial of taTME, click here.