Colorectal Cancer: Metastatic (Palliation)

  • Elisabeth C. McLemore
  • Sonia Ramamoorthy


Approximately 20% of colorectal cancer patients present with established distant metastases.1 Metastases are often detectable with noninvasive imaging such as CT scan and MRI that are performed for staging of cancer. A diagnosis of stage IV disease then allows for appropriate operative and oncologic planning. Among these patients there is enormous heterogeneity with respect to sites of disease, extent of disease, symptoms, performance status, and comorbidities. The clinical spectrum at the time of diagnosis ranges from the asymptomatic patient with a single metastatic lesion to the rapidly deteriorating patient with colon obstruction and advanced, multiorgan metastases. While treatment algorithms may exist for some forms of metastatic disease such as a solitary liver lesion, others are still being defined.


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Copyright information

© ASCRS (American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons) 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Elisabeth C. McLemore
    • 1
  • Sonia Ramamoorthy
    • 2
  1. 1.Colon & Rectal Surgery, Moores Cancer CenterUniversity of California, San DiegoLa JollaUSA
  2. 2.Colon and Rectal SurgeryRebecca and John Moores Cancer CenterLa JollaUSA

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