Treatment Programs

photo

Colorectal Center

The Colorectal Center at the Massachusetts General Hospital Digestive Healthcare Center offers comprehensive detection, treatment and management options for patients with acute and chronic colorectal conditions.

Using state-of-the-art technology and leading-edge medical and surgical interventions, the Colorectal Center provides patients with advanced and timely diagnosis of their condition as well as individualized, ongoing care for the entire spectrum of colorectal disease.Colorectal Care With a Multidisciplinary Approach

Each patient’s treatment is overseen by a personal care team of colorectal specialists and includes:

  • Gastroenterologists
  • Colorectal surgeons
  • Gastrointestinal and interventional radiologists
  • Endoscopists
  • Oncologists
  • Radiation oncologists
  • Pathologists
  • Nurse practitioners
  • Nurses

The care team works with both the patient and the referring physician to coordinate a care plan designed to offer the best outcomes.

Innovative Colorectal Cancer-Screening Technologies

The Colorectal Center offers the most advanced colon cancer screenings and treatments currently available. In addition to standard screening procedures, including colonoscopy, we offer patients access to cutting-edge techniques, some of which we have helped to pioneer, including:

  • Virtual CT colonoscopy
  • Genetic testing patients who are at high-risk for colorectal cancer
  • Chromoendoscopy, a technique used to enhance imaging

The Center for Risk Analysis – Cancer Genetics offers genetic testing, genetic counseling and preventative treatments for high-risk patients with colon polyps and colorectal cancers. These technologies save lives by helping assess the patient’s risk for developing cancer, developing risk-reducing strategies and providing early diagnosis of cancer when it does occur.

Specialized Treatment Begins With Advanced Diagnostics

We offer inpatients a quick turnaround and expert analysis of their test findings, 24 hours a day, for a range of diagnostic and therapeutic procedures. Our endoscopists are available around the clock to confer with referring physicians.

Our diagnostic radiology team is composed of dedicated imaging specialists whose practice focuses specifically on GI scans. They are nationally recognized for expertise in all forms of sophisticated imaging, including:

  • CT - CAT scans
  • PET scans
  • MRI scans
  • GI interventional radiology

Minimally Invasive Treatment Options

Minimally invasive treatments often present additional options for patients who required traditional open surgery in the past. These new techniques have the benefit of faster recovery times, smaller surgical scars and greater nerve preservation. A leader in developing minimally invasive treatments, we were among the first hospitals in the region to offer:

  • Laproscopic colorectal surgery, surgery performed using a small camera that leaves small scars on the abdominal wall
  • Transanal endoscopic microsurgery (TEM), scarless surgery from within the rectum that could remove polyps and tumors from the lower intestine

Expertise in Treating Colorectal Cancers

The Colorectal Center has extensive experience treating colorectal disorders and cancers. We treat colorectal and anal cancers with chemotherapy and/or radiation in the Tucker Gosnell Center for Gastrointestinal Cancers. Our patients benefit from the expertise of a highly skilled radiation oncology team that makes use of the latest multimodality treatments.

Diverse Treatment Options for Pelvic Floor Disorders

Pelvic floor disorders are often under-reported and under-diagnosed because many patients feel uncomfortable talking about their symptoms or assume they can’t be corrected.

The Pelvic Floor Disorders Service offers patients sensitive evaluation of conditions such as:

  • Fecal incontinence
  • Urinary incontinence
  • Constipation
  • Rectal prolapse
  • Rectocele prolapse
  • Cystocele prolapse
  • Uterine prolapse
  • Anal pain
  • Pelvic/myofascial pain
  • Lower urinary tract symptoms

Contact the Pelvic Floor Disorders Service to schedule an appointment.

Specialized Stoma Service and Care Enterostomal therapy nurses assist in the care and instruction of patients with fistulas and draining wounds and stomas. Our nurses are certified in wound ostomy and continence.

One Call Coordinates CareWe provide patients and referring physicians with an experienced access coordinator, a clinician who is available to assess patients’ needs, coordinate appointments and begin the appropriate testing regimen. Contact the Colorectal Center’s access coordinator

The Colorectal Center at the Massachusetts General Hospital Digestive Healthcare Center offers comprehensive detection, treatment and management options for patients with acute and chronic colorectal conditions.

We treat patients for the full range of colorectal conditions including:

  • Anorectal and rectal conditions, including anal fissures, anal fistulas and rectal-vaginal fistules
  • Cancer
  • Colorectal polyps, including large polyps and multiple instances
  • Crohn’s disease and colitis
  • Diverticular disease
  • Motility disorders
  • Pelvic floor disorders, including constipation and fecal incontinence
  • Significant colonic polyps

We treat patients with Crohn’s disease and colitis through the Crohn’s and Colitis Center.

After referral and initiation of therapy, we work closely with both the patient and the referring physician on long-term care plans to ensure the best possible outcomes.

A Dedicated Referral Line for Physicians and Patients

We provide patients and referring physicians with an experienced access coordinator, a clinician who helps assess patient needs, coordinate appointments and begin the appropriate testing regimen. Contact the Colorectal Center’s access coordinator

Calls will be returned within 24 hours.

Leadership in Treating Gastrointestinal Disorders
In 2013, U.S. News & World Report ranked Mass General fourth in the nation for treating gastrointestinal disorders. Our Magnet award-winning nursing staff offer excellence in care at every step of the patient experience.

Our surgeons perform some of the highest volumes of colorectal surgery and laproscopic colorectal surgery in New England. All of the members of our world-renowned surgery staff belong to the American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgery and have held leadership positions in preeminent surgical organizations.

Our colorectal surgeons have particular expertise related to the:

  • Intestinal tract
  • Colon
  • Rectum
  • Anal canal
  • Perianal area

Learn more about colorectal surgery in the Department of Surgery

We are leaders in the diagnosis and treatment of primary motility and continence disorders and rectal/bowel problems that arise following surgery. We are a resource for patients who have had unsuccessful treatments and surgeries for conditions including diverticulitis and chronic anal disease.

Clinical Research Studies & Trials
Our physicians are active in clinical trials and research studies related to acute and chronic colorectal conditions, allowing us to bring our patients promising new treatments as quickly as possible.

Along with several area hospitals, we are part of a Specialized Program of Research Excellence (SPORE) in Gastrointestinal Cancer. Our patients may benefit from being able to take part in this multimillion-dollar National Cancer Institute-funded research program.

Patients interested in participating in clinical trials can browse online for open trials.

Colorectal Cancer

Colorectal cancer is malignant cells found in the colon or rectum.

Diverticular Disease

In the colon, some people have small pouches that bulge outward through weak spots. Diverticular disease is an inflammation or infection in the pouches, known as diverticula, which are located in the colon.

Gas in the Digestive Tract

Gas in the digestive tract is created from swallowing air or by the breakdown of certain foods by the bacteria that are present in the colon.

Hemorrhoids

Hemorrhoids are blood vessels, normally present in and around the anus and lower rectum, that have become swollen due to stretching under pressure.

Ostomy Support Group

We welcome patients with a new or existing colostomy, ileostomy or urostomy, and their family and friends, to monthly meetings of the Massachusetts General Hospital Ostomy Support Group.

The following related clinical trials and research studies are currently seeking participants at Massachusetts General Hospital. Search for clinical trials and studies in another area of interest.

Colorectal Screening Saves Lives

Colorectal cancer is the third leading cause of cancer death among men and women nationwide. But, if detected early colorectal cancer is treatable and beatable.

Commentary: What We Learned From Cutting Colon Surgery Infections

Massachusetts General Hospital surgeon Matthew Hutter, MD, explains how a quality consortium of Partners HealthCare hospitals reduced colon surgery infections by 23%.

Ostomy Support Group

We welcome patients with a new or existing colostomy, ileostomy or urostomy, and their family and friends, to monthly meetings of the Massachusetts General Hospital Ostomy Support Group.

Colorectal Center

Blake 4
55 Fruit Street
Boston, MA 02114

Phone: 617-643-5166
Hours: 8:00 am to 5:00 pm, Monday through Friday


To begin the appointment process, contact the Colorectal Center access coordinator at 617-643-5166 or request an appointment online.

Next Steps:

patient

Request an appointment at the Digestive Healthcare Center

Contact the Digestive Healthcare Center to schedule an appointment with one of our digestive health specialists

Discover the Digestive Healthcare Center patient experience

Our approach to patient care brings together a team of digestive health specialists who create a personalized treatment plan for each patient.