Surgery explained

  • Rectal cancer

    Types of surgery for rectal cancer

    An operation to remove the cancer is the most common treatment for rectal cancer.

  • Rectal cancer

    What happens before the surgery?

    A member of the surgical team will talk to you about your operation and make sure you understand what’s going to happen.

  • Rectal cancer

    What happens after surgery?

    Your specialist nurse will help you recover after surgery and you’ll probably be ready to go home after 3–7 days.

  • Rectal cancer

    Bowel function after surgery

    If you have problems with bowel function after surgery, talk to your surgeon or nurse. There are treatments that can help.

  • Rectal cancer

    If you have a stoma

    Adjusting to a stoma takes time but most people manage well with support from their stoma care nurse.

  • General information

    Follow-up care after surgery

    You will have follow-up appointments after your surgery to check on your recovery and any new symptoms.