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Colorectal Cancer Specialists at the Cancer Institute at GMC

After your doctor makes a diagnosis of colorectal cancer and determines the stage or extent of the disease, he or she will talk with our entire team of cancer specialists at the Cancer Institute at Gwinnett Medical Center. We have access to the most advanced colon and rectal cancer treatments due to our partnership with the Duke Cancer Network so our patients have more options, including clinical trials, to fight cancer.

Once a treatment plan is determined by our team of cancer specialists, your doctor will talk through next steps with you. Depending on the stage of your cancer, that may include surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy or a combination of treatments. Your colorectal cancer specialist will explain potential side effects, as well as the pros and cons of each treatment.


Understanding Your Treatment Options

Knowing more about your specific cancer diagnosis will help you better understand your treatment options. Our cancer specialists will make sure you have the necessary facts to make the most informed decisions about your colon or rectal cancer treatment plan. The following questions may be helpful to guide your decisions when talking with one of our cancer specialists:

  • What stage is my colorectal cancer?
  • Has the cancer spread to any other parts of my body?
  • Are there any other tests I will need before deciding on a treatment path?
  • What treatment plan do you recommend?
  • Are clinical trials available for my type of cancer?
  • Should I consider a second opinion?


Colorectal Surgical Treatment at Gwinnett Medical Center

Surgery is the most common treatment for most early stages of colorectal cancer. The goal of surgery is to remove the entire tumor and any cancer cells that may have spread to nearby tissue. Depending on the stage of the cancer, surgery may be all that's needed. Or surgery may come before or after another treatment is used. Surgical treatment for colorectal cancer can vary, depending on the extent of disease, and may include:

  • Local excision and polypectomy: early-stage removal of colon or rectum polyps with colonoscope rather than open surgery
  • Colectomy or Colon resection: surgical removal of all or part of the colon to remove diseased tissue
  • Colostomy: the temporary or permanent surgical placement of an opening in the abdominal wall to add an ostomy pouch
  • Proctectomy: surgical removal of the rectum 


Chemotherapy Services within your Community

Chemotherapy is a type of cancer treatment that uses IV or oral drugs to destroy cancer cells to stop the cancer from growing or spreading. Chemotherapy can be used before surgery to shrink tumors or after surgery to kill or control any remaining cancerous cells. At the Cancer Institute at Gwinnett Medical Center, our chemotherapy services are provided at the Center for Cancer Care, by oncologists rated among the top in the state. Right here – within your own community – our highly trained cancer specialists bring experience and expertise to help our patients achieve positive outcomes.


Radiation Therapy Services

Radiation therapy uses high energy x-rays to kill cancer cells. Like chemotherapy, is often used before surgery to shrink tumors and after surgery to kill or control remaining cells and reduce the likelihood of recurrence. Depending upon your individual treatment plan, our team of cancer specialists at the Cancer Institute at Gwinnett Medical Center will determine the appropriate treatment or combination of treatments for you.


Targeted Therapy for Cancer Causing Cells

Targeted therapy is often used in addition to chemotherapy. Targeted therapy is a type of treatment that uses medication to target proteins or cell functions that encourage cancer cell growth. The goal is to prevent the cancer from growing.


Ablation and Embolization

Both of these methods can be used to treat tumors that have spread to other parts of the body, such as the liver or lungs. Ablation is the use of radiofrequency or heat to kill tumors or cryosurgery or cold to freeze tumors. Other methods can also be used to destroy tumors rather than removing them. For embolization, a substance is injected into a blood vessel to try to cut off a tumor's blood supply.


Early detection saves lives. To request a FREE colorectal cancer screening kit, complete our convenient online form or call 678-312-5000 and select option 1.