In order to see how to treat colorectal cancer doctors must first stage the cancer. This can be made after three systems: Dukes, Astler-Coller and AJC/TNM.
The classification of cancer after AJC/TNM is:
Stage 0: the cancerous tumor affects only the inner layer of the colon or the rectal lining. The indicated treatment is surgery, for removing tumors and polyps. No further treatment is necessary.
Stage I: the tumor has spread deeply in the inner line of the colon or rectum but has not broken through the colon wall yet. The recommended treatment is surgery with no other additional treatment after the surgery.
Stage II: the tumor has broken through the colon wall but has not spread to the lymph nodes yet. Surgery is indicated and chemotherapy or radiotherapy is needed in some cases.
Stage III: the lymph nodes are affected by the tumor. In colon cancer chemotherapy is needed after surgery; in rectum cancer chemotherapy or radiotherapy is made before or after the surgery.
Stage IV: the cancer has spread and affected other organs like lungs and liver. In this case chemotherapy and radiotherapy will be applied both in order to stop the rectum from being blocked. Sometimes surgery will be needed in order to remove the tumors from the other affected organs.
Surgery for colon cancer refers to removing the cancerous part of the colon and then reconnecting the two ends of the colon. Also, the nearby lymph nodes and a part of the normal tissue will be removed too. Some of the early stages of colon cancer can be resolved during colonoscopy. The patient will recover after a period of time that varies with age, general health and the cancer’s extension.
Surgery for rectal cancer will be made after chemotherapy and radiotherapy if the cancer is in an advanced stage.
If the cancer is caused by polyps they must be removed by a procedure called Polypectomy. A local excision can be made in other cases and will remove superficial cancers from the inner layer of rectum along with some health tissue from nearby. Frequently a low anterior resection can be made in order to treat colorectal cancers but the tumor must not be situated very close to the anal sphincter. Other solutions are the abdominoperineal resection and in the most desperate cases when other organs are involved the pelvic exenteration will be applied.
Going to regularly check-ups and seeing your doctor from the first symptoms of colorectal cancer you can treat cancer from its beginnings, avoid complications during drastic therapy and recover faster from the disease.
For greater resources on colon cancer or especially about stage3 colon cancer please visit this link http://www.colon-cancer-center.com/stage3-colon-cancer.htm