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Rectal cancer

28. Feb 2017
Analysis for improved treatment of rectal cancer of the upper third.

Treatment of rectal cancer of the upper third
Rectal cancer develops in the last section of the intestine and is with the cancer of the remaining large intestine (colon cancer) summarized under the term bowel cancer. According to the German Cancer Society rectal cancer is the second most common malignant tumors in the gastro-intestinal tract.
The benefits of radiotherapy in the treatment of cancer of the upper third of the rectum are currently not entirely clear. Generally, any institution treating patients with rectal cancer recommends either surgery followed by chemotherapy (treatment as for colon cancer) or radiotherapy with concurrent chemotherapy (radio(chemo)-therapy) followed by surgery and subsequent chemotherapy (as for rectal cancer of the middle and lower third).

Course of the study
In this study, data from patients who were treated for rectal cancer of the upper third between 2005 and 2015 at the hospitals involved in the project in Germany and Denmark will be analyzed. The study compares the two forms of treatment in terms of the survival of patients, as well as with regard to the control of the disease.

Objectives
This study aims to contribute to improvement of the treatment of future patients with cancer of the upper third of the rectum. In addition, it should pave the way for a subsequent trial.

Coordinating investigator
Prof. Dr. med. Dirk Rades, Department of Radiation Oncology, University of Lübeck / University Medical Center Schleswig-Holstein Campus Lübeck (Germany)