Colorectal cancer is one of the most common cancers with a good prognosis if detected and treated early. It usually begins as a tissue growth, called a polyp, that grows and changes with time. Polyps are usually harmless and do not cause any symptoms when they are small, but over time they may cause problems of bleeding, obstruction and become cancerous. Detection and removal of polyps through colonoscopy may prevent the development of colorectal cancer.
If you experience changes in your bowel habits and /or symptoms, like blood in stools, diarrhoea or constipation that does not go away, it is advisable for you to undergo investigations of these symptoms. There are various methods of evaluating the colon and rectum. A colonoscopy allows both the detection of any abnormality within the colon and rectum, and also enables the removal of polyps at the same sitting. Individuals who do not have any symptoms but have a family history of colorectal or other cancers or one who is above 50 years of age are encouraged to be screened for colorectal cancer.
Colorectal cancer survival rates have increased over the past 15 years with early diagnosis, as well as improved and less invasive multidisciplinary treatment.
In some cases, chemotherapy and radiotherapy may be recommended as part of your colorectal cancer treatment. We will coordinate your treatment with specialised medical and radiation oncologists to ensure you receive the most effective management for your colorectal cancer, in order to achieve the best outcome possible.
At The Surgical Oncology Clinic, your colorectal cancer treatment is personalised to provide the best outcomes. We offer treatments for colorectal cancer, including minimally invasive laparoscopic surgery. In all cases, we strive for surgical excellence with complete tumour clearance and low post-surgical complication rates. Additionally, we have special expertise and experience in treating advanced colorectal cancer. This includes advanced primary and recurrent tumours requiring resection of multiple involved organs, as well as peritoneal disease with the use of cytoreductive surgery and hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy (CRS and HIPEC).
Stomach (gastric) cancer is the fifth leading cause of cancer deaths in males, and the sixth in females. When diagnosed at an early stage, usually through an OGD, it is often cured with adequate surgical therapy. An OGD may also detect the presence of a bacteria (Helicobacter Pylori), a known cause of stomach cancer that can be treated with oral medications.
If you experience epigastric pain, passing of black stools, vomiting and nausea, or loss of appetite and weight loss, it is advisable for you to undergo an OGD.
Surgery for stomach cancer must ensure that good surgical margins are obtained and should include adequate lymph node removal. In the early-staged disease, surgery is the only treatment that is required, whilst later-staged disease may require chemotherapy in addition.
At The Surgical Oncology Clinic, we aim to eradicate known causes of stomach cancer as well as detect any abnormalities that can be treated to prevent the development of stomach cancer. A personalised approach to the treatment of your stomach cancer is planned to ensure the best survival outcomes. In those with peritoneal disease from stomach cancer, we may employ the use of cytoreductive surgery and hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy (CRS and HIPEC) or intraperitoneal and intravenous chemotherapy (IP/IV), working closely with our medical oncologists.
Peritoneal cancers refer to a wide variety of cancers that involve the peritoneum. The peritoneum is a thin layer that covers the abdomen, pelvis and the organs within them. The cancer may arise from the peritoneum itself or may spread to the peritoneum from other organs.
Tumours that arise from the peritoneum itself, include malignant mesothelioma and primary peritoneal cancer; while tumours that commonly spread to the peritoneum include ovarian cancer, colorectal cancer, stomach cancer, appendiceal cancer and pseudomyxoma peritonei (PMP).
Patients with peritoneal cancer may present with abdominal pain and swelling, change in bowel habits, nausea and vomiting, and unexplained weight loss. In certain cases, peritoneal cancer is picked up on blood tests or scans done for other unrelated conditions. Some patients with peritoneal cancer have no symptoms at all.
Treatment includes cytoreductive surgery (CRS) and hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy (HIPEC), which involves removal of the peritoneum, any affected organ and the application of heated chemotherapy directly into the abdominal cavity. The surgical procedure aims to remove all visible tumours completely, while the chemotherapy treats any microscopic tumour that may be present.
Our doctors at The Surgical Oncology Clinic have years of experience in performing CRS and HIPEC. We will work closely with our medical oncologists to come up with a suitable, and tailored plan for you.
Melanoma is the most dangerous type of skin cancer. It typically occurs in the skin but may also occur in other areas such as in the head and neck, intestinal and genitourinary systems. Patients may present with a new mole, or changes in an existing mole such as bleeding or increase in size.
A properly executed biopsy allows diagnosis, staging and appropriate surgical planning. When diagnosed early, melanomas can be cured with just surgery. An assessment of the regional lymph nodes through minimally invasive methods (sentinel lymph node biopsy) is critical for selected melanomas. In those with obvious nodal disease, complete lymph node dissection may be considered, with the aims of improving the quality of life and survival outcomes with the aid of additional immunotherapy.
Our doctors at The Surgical Oncology Clinic take extra care in coming up with a holistic plan for you. You will be actively involved in the discussions to ensure that you are comfortable with the decision made.
Sarcoma is a rare cancer that arises from connective tissue, and usually occur in the bones, muscles, fat and blood vessels of your body. There are many types of sarcomas but can be broadly divided into two categories – soft tissue sarcoma, and bone sarcoma (osteosarcoma).
Soft tissue sarcomas (STS) begin in the soft tissues of the body. Examples of soft tissue include fat, muscle, nerves, tendons, and blood and lymph vessels. Soft tissue can also be contained within organs. Soft tissue sarcomas are harder to detect as they can appear anywhere in your body and do not cause symptoms in the early stages. Often, patients present with a painless lump which then grows bigger – this may press against the nerves or muscles and cause discomfort and pain, difficulty in breathing, or both. In some patients, they may be picked up on a scan done for other purposes.
Prior radiation and certain inherited conditions can make a person more likely to develop a soft tissue sarcoma. These include familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP), Li-Fraumeni syndrome, neurofibromatosis, and retinoblastoma. But mostly, there are no obvious reason why a sarcoma develops.
Surgery is the mainstay of treatment for localised sarcoma. However, it is important that a multidisciplinary approach, including radiation and chemotherapy, be taken for certain types of and more advanced sarcomas. This depends on many factors, for example the size, location, and type of sarcoma.
On the other hand, osteosarcoma symptoms are more obvious, and they include pain in the affected bone, swelling, or a limp if the sarcoma is in your leg.
Our doctors at The Surgical Oncology Clinic are skilled and experienced in treating soft tissue sarcoma. We work with the other sarcoma specialists in pathology, medical oncology and radiation oncology to ensure that an accurate sarcoma diagnosis is made, and will guide you through your treatment for sarcoma, taking into account all the necessary factors in order to craft a personalised treatment which will benefit you.