Once your specialist team have received the results of your tests and fully understand the extent of the cancer, they will be able to discuss your diagnosis and what your treatment options might be. There are three main types of treatment for bowel cancer:

Depending on the stage and location of your cancer, you may be recommended either one or a combination of these treatments. Bowel cancer patients may also receive targeted therapies if the bowel cancer has spread to other parts of the body.


Bowel cancer is the general term for cancer found in the large bowel and can be divided into:

  • Colon cancer which develops in the colon (large bowel)
  • Rectal cancer which develops in the rectum (the very last part of the bowel before the anus)


There are slight differences in the treatment pathway depending on whether your cancer is in the colon or rectum, illustrated in these flowcharts:


Anal cancer is a very rare form of cancer and the treatment for this is different from colon or rectal cancer. Please see our Anal Cancer Factsheet for more information.