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Colorectal cancer is one of the most common cancers in both men and women. Surgery is the main treatment for colorectal cancer, especially for patients diagnosed in the early stages. During surgery, part of the colon and sometimes rectum that has the tumor is removed, along with some of the nearby healthy tissue and lymph nodes.

Colorectal tumors can be removed through open surgery, where a  surgeon makes one large cut in the abdomen (10-25 cm) to reach the colon. Now there are new and less invasive surgical procedures that are improving safety and recovery time. 

Laparoscopic surgery is a type of minimally invasive surgery where the surgeon uses several small cuts in the abdomen (0.5-1 cm) to insert surgical instruments, including a long and thin tube with a light and a camera on the end called a laparoscope. A larger cut, about 3-5 cm wide, is made to remove the cancerous part of the colon or rectum. The laparoscope shows images on video monitors in the operating room. During the operation, the surgeon moves the instruments by watching the monitors. 

Robotic surgery is a newer type of laparoscopic surgery. In this procedure, the surgeon makes several small cuts in the abdomen. A camera and other surgical instruments are placed in this procedure too, but in robotic surgery, the surgeon controls the instruments using a computer. The camera sends 3D images to a high-definition computer monitor.

Are you a candidate for minimally invasive surgery? Learn more and find out here


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