Colorectal Cancer Program
Richard Fortunato, DO, FASCRS, FACS
Surgical Chair, MWHC Regional Cancer Center Colorectal Cancer Program
Dr. Richard Fortunato is a board-certified colon and rectal surgeon specializing
in advanced minimally invasive, single-incision,laparoscopic and robotic
surgeries, and hasperformed nearly 1,000 such procedures.
Surgery for Colorectal Cancer
The goal of surgery for early stage colorectal cancer is to take out the
tumor, often along with the section of your colon or rectum where the
tumor is located. It's the most common treatment for early stage colorectal
cancer and offers the best chance for a complete cure.
Many patients who have colorectal surgery are able to return to an active
lifestyle in a short period. Surgery for early-stage colorectal cancer
offers the best chance for a cancer-free life.
Surgery for colon and rectal cancers may include:
- Local excision
The type of surgery you have depends on your health and the stage and location
of the tumor.
We offer two dedicated locations for radiation therapy - one on the Mary
Washington Hospital Medical Campus and one on the Stafford Hospital Medical
Campus. Both centers offer the most advanced technology available today.
Radiation therapy is a major part of the treatment for rectal cancers.
It’s also sometimes used as a treatment for colon cancers.
There are several reasons your doctor may recommend this therapy:
- To reduce the size of the tumor prior to surgery
- To attempt to eliminate cancer cells left post-surgery
- To lessen symptoms due to tumors that can’t be treated with surgery
- To lessen symptoms due to tumors that have spread to other organs
Our radiation therapy centers are accredited by the American College of
Radiology, which demonstrates that our centers meet the most stringent
criteria for quality. We also have the highest scores possible for patient
satisfaction, consistently ranking in the top 5% nationwide.
Chemotherapy for Colorectal Cancer
Chemotherapy is the use of drugs to kill cancer cells. Your doctor has
options for how to give you chemotherapy drugs. Depending on the specific
drugs you are taking, you may get them either intravenously or in pill form.
You may have it for any of the following reasons.
- To help shrink a tumor before surgery
- To reduce the chance that the cancer will come back after surgery
- To treat cancer that has spread to other parts of your body
- To make radiation therapy more effective by making cells more sensitive
to the radiation
- To treat cancer that has come back
We are here to help
For more information or to talk with a Cancer Nurse Navigator, please call