Types of Anal Cancer Surgery
Anal cancer is anal canal cancer. However, combination therapy enhances the possibilities of side effects.
Anal cancer is anal canal cancer. The anal canal is a tubular organ situated at the rectum’s end via which stools pass out of the body. It is an uncommon kind of cancer. Its signs and symptoms include anal pain, anal itching, abnormal growth in the anal canal, and rectal bleeding.
Generally, a combination of radiation and chemotherapy is used for treatment. However, combination therapy enhances the possibilities of side effects.
Surgery: The ideal treatment for any stage of anal cancer
Anal cancer specialist recommends surgery in stage 1 of cancer or after an unsuccessful chemo-radiotherapy.
Several kinds of surgeries are performed for the removal of anal cancer. They include,
• Local excision- removal of the area containing cancerous cells
• Abdominal-perineal resection (APR)- removal of the rectum, anus, and colon (a portion of the large bowel)
Local resection: Removal of cancer of the anal margin in initial stages
The removal of early cancer from the anal margin is known as local resection. The surgeon does not disturb the anal sphincter (muscle surrounding the anus) that facilitates bowel control.
The tissues are examined by a pathologist who determines the presence or absence of cancer cells on the tumor’s border. It is known as the clear margin.
Abdominoperineal resection (APR): Removal of rectum, anus, and a portion of the large bowel
APR is indicated where chemo-radiotherapy fails to offer desired results or if cancer has recurred.
In APR surgery, the rectum, the anus, and a portion of the colon are removed. In some instances, a part of lymph nodes situated in the proximity of the anus and lymph nodes of the groin are also excavated. The patient has to undergo a permanent colostomy as a part of the procedure.
The removal of the cancer is done either by keyhole, robotic, or open surgery.
Keyhole surgery or laparoscopic surgery is a surgical process whereby the surgeon makes very small cuts in the abdomen and passes a laparoscope that captures the pictures of the inside and shows them on a video screen. Other instruments are also passed through the cuts.
This surgery's benefit is that no large cut is made in the abdomen, except one, which is slightly larger than the others. The large cut facilitates surgery and removal of the tumor. It doesn't cause severe pain, and the patient recovers faster.
In this, a robotic machine is used for keyhole operation. The surgeon controls the machine. It facilitates a better view of the inside and allows for precise movements.
As the name says, in this kind of anal cancer surgery, a long cut is made down the abdomen, and cancer is removed through this cut.
The bottom line
Though uncommon, anal cancer is dangerous. However, surgical procedures help the patients to get rid of cancer and lead a healthy life. These surgeries are performed by expert and experienced cancer surgeons in well-equipped hospitals and other healthcare facilities.