Surgery for Colorectal Cancer

Henry Ford Health is nationally ranked for our expertise in colon cancer surgery. We’re often the first to introduce new surgical techniques to Michigan and the U.S. We use our surgical expertise to preserve your quality of life during colorectal cancer treatment.

Surgery for colorectal cancer: the Henry Ford difference

Col Rec SurgeryWe are one of the oldest and most respected colorectal surgery programs in the state. Advantages of our program include:

  • Team approach: Surgeons, medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, pathologists and other experts collaborate on your care. They select the right sequence and combination of treatments for your needs. Meet our colorectal cancer specialists.
  • Enhanced recovery after surgery: We help you recover as quickly as possible after surgery and minimize your hospital stay. Preoperative bowel prep, nutritional support, on-site physical therapy and personalized pain management help you achieve the best possible outcome.
  • Comprehensive support: People with temporary or permanent ostomies after surgery find support from certified nurses at our ostomy clinic. You can also get same-day care at our OncoStat clinic for treatment side effects. Learn more about our support services for colorectal cancer.

Take the next step

Contact the colorectal cancer care team 24/7 by calling (888) 777-4167 or request an appointment online.

Laparoscopic and robotic surgery for colon and rectal cancer

Our surgeons excel in minimally invasive surgeries for colorectal cancer. In fact, Henry Ford was among the first programs in Michigan to offer robotic-assisted colorectal surgery.

We remove tumors without damaging nearby structures, greatly reducing the risk of bowel, urinary or sexual dysfunction. Minimally invasive surgery also helps you recover faster and with less pain.

We offer:

  • Laparoscopic surgery: We operate through tiny incisions to avoid large scars and damage to healthy tissue.
  • Robotic-assisted surgery: Your surgeon controls a robotic arm that removes tumors with incredible precision.
  • Transanal surgery: We remove hard-to-reach tumors from your rectum or lower colon entirely through your anus.

Sphincter-sparing surgery for colon and rectal cancer

Your anal sphincter is a muscular ring around your anus that contracts and relaxes (closes and opens) to let stool leave your body. In the past, colorectal cancer surgery often damaged or removed the sphincter, resulting in bowel dysfunction and a permanent colostomy.

However, surgical advances now make it possible to safely remove tumors without damaging the sphincter. This means most people won’t need a permanent colostomy after surgery and can continue using the bathroom normally. Sphincter-sparing surgery requires special expertise. The surgeons at Henry Ford are leaders in this technique.

Sphincter-sparing procedures we offer include:

  • Coloanal anastomosis: If we remove your rectum, we connect your colon to your anus. We make a pouch using part of your colon to hold stool until you’re ready to use the bathroom.
  • Ileoanal anastomosis (J-pouch surgery): If we remove your rectum and colon, we connect your small intestine to your anus. We create a pouch for stool using part of your small intestine.
  • Transanal endoscopic microsurgery (TEM): We insert a scope and surgical tools through your anus to remove early-stage rectal cancer, so we don’t have to remove your rectum.
  • Transanal total mesorectal excision (TaTME): We remove part or all of your rectum, along with the fatty tissue and lymph nodes around it, through your anus. We attach your colon to the remaining part of your rectum. TaTME is for select patients with hard-to-reach tumors in the mid to lower rectum.
How Minimally Invasive Surgery Is Making Colorectal Cancer Treatment Easier
Quality of Life After Colorectal Cancer Surgery
Maintaining quality of life is at the forefront of our approach to care.

Surgery for metastatic colorectal cancer

Metastatic colorectal cancer is cancer in the colon or rectum that has spread to other parts of your body. The most common places for colorectal cancer to spread are the liver, lungs, peritoneum and distant lymph nodes.

At Henry Ford, our colon and rectal surgeons collaborate with highly skilled hepatobiliary and thoracic surgeons to perform complex surgeries for advanced colorectal cancer. They remove tumors from your colon, liver, lungs or other areas during a single procedure. We offer combined procedures at several Henry Ford hospitals, so you can get the care you need close to home.

Newly diagnosed?

Contact the cancer team 24/7 by calling (888) 777-4167.


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