Treatment for Metastatic Rectal Cancer

Metastasis is the spread of cancer cells to other organs. It’s common in patients with advanced rectal cancer. Rectal cancer usually spreads to the lungs but can also spread to the liver. About 60 to 70 percent of people whose disease returns after surgery for colon cancer develop a tumor in the liver..

To treat metastases, the rectal cancer experts at Memorial Sloan Kettering use a variety of treatment approaches, including:

  • surgery
  • image-guided therapies, such as MRI and CT
  • chemotherapy
  • biologic therapies, such as immunotherapy and targeted therapies
  • radiation therapy

When possible, our surgeons remove primary rectal tumors and liver metastases during the same operation. This can significantly reduce your recovery time and risk for complications.

Learn more about how we care for people with liver metastases.