Anal Cancer

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At Banner MD Anderson Cancer Center, we approach your care by assembling a multidisciplinary team of doctors, experts and health care professionals to evaluate your illness, develop an individualized treatment plan and understand your needs as a patient and as a person. This approach ensures you receive comprehensive, personalized care  and are treated with compassion and understanding.

What Is Anal Cancer?

Anal cancer is a disease in which malignant cancer cells form in the tissues of the anus or anal canal, the short tube at the end of your digestive tract. It is a relatively uncommon cancer type. But, because most anal cancers are related to the human papillomavirus (HPV) infection, a sexually transmitted disease, anal cancer diagnosis rates are increasing. It is more prevalent among women than men and early detection is a key factor in successfully treating anal cancer.

What Kind of Doctor Treats Anal Cancer?

Banner MD Anderson's multidisciplinary approach to treating anal cancer brings together a team of experts that includes medical, surgical and radiation oncologists. These individuals work together to develop an individual treatment plan based on each patient's unique needs.

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What Are the Signs and Symptoms of Anal Cancer?

Sometimes anal cancer does not have any symptoms, but most cases will result in minor anal bleeding that is frequently mistaken for hemorrhoids.

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What Causes Anal Cancer?

Anal cancer doesn’t have a single cause, but the likelihood of developing anal cancer increases if you have had a human papillomavirus (HPV) infection, are infected with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), have had anal warts or a history of smoking.

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How Is Anal Cancer Diagnosed?

Most often anal cancers are found because of signs or symptoms a person is having. If anal cancer is suspected, exams and tests will confirm the diagnosis. People at high risk for anal cancer are diagnosed using screening tests such as a digital rectal exam or an anal Pap test.

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How Is Anal Cancer Treated?

There are many ways to treat anal cancer, including surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy and immunotherapy. Banner MD Anderson’s multidisciplinary team will determine the best treatment approach, and discuss your options as well as what to expect. Our compassionate team is available to offer support and answer any questions you may have.

Learn more about anal cancer treatment options.