What is Colorectal Cancer?

Colorectal Cancer is the #1 cancer in Singapore and it refers to cancer that arises from the colon or rectum.

Most colorectal cancers start as a growth in the large intestine known as a polyp. Over time, polyps can transform into cancer. As such, detecting and removing polyps help prevent colorectal cancer. 

Often, polyps don’t cause any symptoms. Undergoing regular screenings, such as through colonoscopies, is essential for early detection and removal of polyps.

Dr Ng’s Expertise in Colorectal Cancer Surgery

When To Seek Medical Advice?

Symptoms and signs of possible colorectal cancer include blood in stools, change in bowel habits, abdominal pain or bloating, unexplained weight loss or appetite, fatigue and anaemia. Should you experience any of these symptoms, please consult our colorectal surgeons.

In addition, if you are over the age of 50 or have a family history of colorectal cancer, regular screening is recommended.

Colorectal cancer is highly treatable with good long term outcomes especially when it is detected at an early stage.  

At One Surgical, our team is here to provide medical advice and comprehensive care. Your health is our priority.

What Causes Colorectal Cancer

While there is no definite cause of colorectal cancer, there are a number of factors that can increase the risk of developing colorectal cancer. These include:

  • Age - Though it can affect people of any age, most cases of colorectal cancer appear in those over the age of 50. Family History - A family history of colorectal cancer can increase the risk of developing the disease.
  • Inflammatory Bowel Disease - IBD such as Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis can increase the risk of colon cancer over time. 
  • Smoking - As with many other cancers, smoking increases the chance of colorectal cancer forming.
  • Lack of Regular Exercise
  • Diet High In Red Meat and Fat

 

Symptoms of Colorectal Cancer

Common symptoms of colorectal cancer include:

  • Constipation 
  • Change in consistency, size or shape of stool 
  • Blood in stool 
  • Anaemia 
  • Unexplained weight loss 
  • Poor appetite
  • Abdominal pain 
  • Fatigue and weakness 

However, in the early stages, colorectal cancer is a silent disease and may not present with any symptoms. If you notice any of these symptoms, do approach our team at One Surgical for a comprehensive health evaluation.

Diagnosing Colon Cancer

Colorectal cancer is diagnosed through a colonoscopy, 

During this procedure, a specialist inserts a fiberoptic tube with a camera (known as a colonoscope) into the patient’s back passage. The colonoscope is advanced through the entire colon and rectum and this allows the colon and rectum to be evaluated.

Should any abnormal findings be found, such as polyps or tumours, they can be biopsied or removed during the colonoscopy for further examination.This allows the exact nature of the abnormal tissue to be determined, and tells the specialist if there is any cancer present in the tissue.

 

Treatment: Colorectal Cancer Surgery

For colorectal cancer, surgery is the primary treatment. It involves removing the cancer-affected part of the colon or rectum. Sometimes, radiation or chemotherapy is needed, especially for advanced cases.

Advanced techniques like keyhole or robotic-assisted surgery are often used, making the procedure less invasive. If these methods aren't suitable, traditional/open surgery is an option. In some cases, a stoma (or stoma bag) is created during surgery, but it is usually temporary. 

In the past, patients with rectal cancer near the anus might have needed the anus removed, resulting in a permanent stoma. Now, thanks to improved techniques, there's a higher chance of preserving the anus, offering a better quality of life after surgery.

OUR DOCTORS

One Surgical Hernia Surgeons

Dr Ng Chee Yung
Senior Consultant Colorectal Surgeon
Adjunct Asst Professor
Mount Elizabeth Novena Hospital, Singapore
Former President, Society of Colorectal Surgeons Singapore

Dr. Ng Chee Yung  is an authority in the area of minimally invasive colorectal cancer surgery, and is regionally recognised for his techniques in laparoscopic and robotic assisted colorectal surgery. Dr Ng’s mastery of the Da Vinci robotic platform is widely recognised as he has undertaken numerous challenging operations and brought about excellent clinical results for his patients. Dr Ng is frequently on the list of invited speakers at regional and international conferences. In addition, Dr Ng is often called upon to perform live surgery to showcase his surgical technique as well as to proctor other specialists in MIS/robotic colorectal surgery.

Dr Leonard Ho
Senior Consultant Colorectal Surgeon

Dr. Leonard Ho is the latest member to join the One Surgical family. He is a colorectal surgeon with subspecialty interest in the art of minimally invasive colorectal surgery. While in public service, Dr Ho was a senior consultant surgeon in Sengkang General Hospital, and was one of the lead surgeons in performing Transanal Total Mesorectal Excision (TaTME) and minimally invasive surgery (MIS) for colorectal resections. Through specialisation in advanced surgical techniques and meticulous conduct of surgery, Dr Ho firmly believes that better care and outcomes can be delivered to patients.

The Philippine Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons 2016

8th Biennial Congress of ASEAN Society of Colorectal Surgeons (ASCS) in Bali 2016

8th Biennial Congress of ASEAN Society of Colorectal Surgeons (ASCS) in Bali 2016

Shanghai International Colorectal Cancer Symposium 2017 Speaking on "Technique and Outcomes following colonic stenting for large bowel obstruction"

Shanghai International Colorectal Cancer Symposium 2017 Speaking on "Technique and Outcomes following colonic stenting for large bowel obstruction"

Merck GP Symposium 2017 Speaking on "Colon Cancer – Painful Diagnosis to Painless Treatments"

Merck GP Symposium 2017 Speaking on "Colon Cancer – Painful Diagnosis to Painless Treatments"

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