Both the colon and the rectum are parts of the large intestine, an important organ in the digestive system. Your colon is 5 feet long with the function to absorb water from stool. Colon cancer occurs anywhere in the colon. Rectal cancer starts in the rectum which forms about 5 inches of the colon and is where stool is stored in your body until a bowel movement takes place. The rectum is located near the bladder and other important organs such as the uterus in women or the prostate in men. Although similar symptoms occur as a result of colon or rectal cancer, the location of the cancer is important because it impacts the treatment options available and the approach to surgery.

Symptoms of Colon or Rectal Cancer

  • Stomach or Gas Pains
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Bloody Stool
  • Persistent Fatigue or Weakness

Laparoscopic Surgery

This advanced technology eliminates the need for a large incision. Instead, several small incisions are made in the abdomen which allows for special instruments to be inserted. One of these instruments is a camera with a light called a laparoscope which displays images on a monitor. The surgeon uses this visual to move his or her instruments and remove the cancerous part of the colon or rectum.

It has shown to be just as effective as conventional surgery with fewer side effect and an overall faster recovery. Additional benefits include:

  • Reduction in Blood Loss
  • Shorter Hospital Stay
  • Less Risk of Infection
  • Minimal to No Scarring
  • Less Pain Following the Procedure
  • Swifter Recovery

Robotic Surgery

Also known as robot-assisted surgery, this form of laparoscopic surgery enables your doctor to have more precision and control. Just like with laparoscopic surgery, small incisions are made in the abdomen. The difference is that the surgeon uses a computer to control the instruments.


Surgery is never an easy decision, which is why we provide patients and their families with education regarding the risks and benefits of all the surgical procedures we offer. Whenever possible, our surgeons take the least invasive approach necessary, through minimally invasive laparoscopic surgery, endoscopic procedures and robotic-assisted procedures.

Robotic Surgery

Below is an overview of the da Vinci Si System.