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EUS: An Effective New Tool for GI Tumors

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Role of EUS in Outcome of GI Diseases

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The colon and rectum make up the large intestine, the last part of the intestinal tract. The main function of this organ is to remove water from intestinal contents. It is the most common site of intestinal cancer, with more than 150,000 new cases a year. If the tumor can be removed surgically, the chances of being cured are better than 50%. If the tumor is confined to the intestine, the potential for cure approaches 90%. For a more advanced tumor, which has broken through the intestinal wall or spread to lymph nodes, post-operative chemoradiotherapy is now standard treatment. However, studies have shown that pre-operative chemoradiotherapy causes fewer side effects than post-operative chemoradiotherapy for these advanced localized tumors. Accurate staging is therefore very important to determine which patients should receive treatment before surgery. EUS is the best test for this local regional staging. It allows doctors to shrink advanced tumors before attempting to remove them. Removing smaller size tumors also expedites patient recovery. Pre-operative treatment now achieves better cure rates than chemoradiotherapy after surgery.

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