Treatment for colorectal cancer depends on the stage at which cancer was discovered. Early stage colorectal cancer is best treated with surgery. Approximately 95% of Stage I and 65-80% of Stage II colorectal cancers are curable with surgery. Rectal cancer however, may require additional radiation therapy to minimize the risk of recurrence. Advanced stage (Stage III and Stage IV) often consists of a combination of therapies, including: surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation.
Although staging of your cancer is an important indication of the type of treatment you may receive, it is not the sole factor in defining your specific treatment. All treatment decisions at Johns Hopkins are determined on an individual basis based on discussions with surgical medical and radiation oncologists, because no two cancers and no two people are identical. Several other factors are considered in your individual assesment, including your age, general health, family history of cancer, other medical conditions, and whether it is a new cancer or one that has recurred. Since each patients situation is unique, you should ask your doctor for a detailed explanation of the implications of the stage of your cancer.
At Johns Hopkins we provide each patient with a comprehensive approach guided by the top specialists in colorectal cancer care. This ensures that patients receive treatment specifically targeted to their disease.
Explore the various therapeutic options for colorectal cancer by choosing a disease stage below. If you are unsure what stage your cancer is, ask your doctor.