Anal cancer

Anal cancer overview

You are at the center of everything we do at Seattle Cancer Care Alliance (SCCA). Here, we surround you with a team of specialists who work together closely to provide expertly targeted, complete care and compassionate support throughout your treatment and beyond.

We guide you every step of the way, combining our deep clinical expertise in anal cancer with a commitment to meet your unique needs.

Why choose SCCA?

  • True team care
    A team of medical oncologists, radiation oncologists and colorectal surgeons cares for people with anal, colon or rectal cancer, from diagnosis through follow-up, in our Colorectal Cancer Specialty Clinic. We support you with a range of other healthcare professionals, such as dietitians, pharmacists, genetic counselors and social workers.

  • Experienced anal cancer specialists
    SCCA patients receive state-of-the-art treatment from some of the world’s leading doctors who focus on treating cancers of the gastrointestinal system, even rare diseases like anal cancer. In fact, our doctors help define the national standards for anal cancer care. 

  • Comprehensive anal cancer treatment 
    Our doctors provide in the full spectrum of treatments anal cancer may require. Based on the unique characteristics of your tumor, your team may recommend radiation therapy, chemotherapy, surgery or a combination, all available here.

  • Where you're treated first matters most
    Studies have shown that patients evaluated and treated at a multidisciplinary cancer center, like SCCA, have better outcomes and that the first treatment you receive for cancer is by far the most important. Patients who begin treatment at SCCA often have better outcomes than those who started treatment elsewhere.

  • A national leader in cancer care
    SCCA is the leading cancer treatment center in the region and among the top nationally, according to U.S. News & World Report. 

  • NCI comprehensive cancer center
    We are a comprehensive cancer center, a designation from the National Cancer Institute that reflects our scientific leadership and the depth and breadth of our research to prevent, diagnose and treat cancer.

Chemotherapy Treatment that uses drugs to stop the growth of cancer cells, either by killing the cells or by stopping them from dividing. It may be given alone or with other treatments. Treatment that uses drugs to stop the growth of cancer cells, either by killing the cells or by stopping them from dividing. Chemotherapy may be given by mouth, injection, infusion or on the skin, depending on the type and stage of the cancer being treated. It may be given alone or with other treatments, such as surgery, radiation therapy or biologic therapy. Gastrointestinal Refers to the stomach and intestines. Also called GI. Radiation oncologist A physician who has special training in using radiation to treat cancer. Radiation therapy The use of high-energy radiation from X-rays, gamma rays, neutrons, protons and other sources to kill cancer cells and shrink tumors. The use of high-energy radiation from x-rays, gamma rays, neutrons, protons and other sources to kill cancer cells and shrink tumors. Radiation may come from a machine outside the body (external-beam radiation therapy), or it may come from radioactive material placed in the body near cancer cells (internal radiation therapy or brachytherapy). Systemic radiation therapy uses a radioactive substance, such as a radiolabeled monoclonal antibody, that travels in the blood to tissues throughout the body.
Second opinions

If you’ve been diagnosed with anal cancer, we recommend getting a second opinion before choosing where you’ll be treated. 

Though you can benefit from a second opinion at any time, it is most valuable when you are first diagnosed and have the widest array of treatment options. 

Seattle Cancer Care Alliance (SCCA) is home to the region’s only Colorectal Cancer Specialty Clinic, where our medical oncologists, surgical oncologists, radiation oncologists and supportive care professionals come together weekly to discuss and care for people with colorectal or anal cancer as a team. During a single visit you get the second opinion of not one doctor but an entire group of specialists.

Based on your unique situation, we might schedule you with a single specialist who is best qualified to provide an opinion about your options — for example, if you have metastatic cancer. 

Talk with anal cancer experts who understand your disease in greater depth than the general oncologists in your local community.

Call us at (855) 557-0555 to request an appointment for a second opinion.

How a second opinion can help

Getting a second opinion from doctors who specialize in anal cancer can help you:

Feel confident that your cancer has been accurately diagnosed and staged

There are several types of anal cancer, and evaluating the stage of these tumors can be complex. Pathologists, radiologists and gastroenterologists from SCCA are experts in diagnosing anal cancers and have access to the latest technologies to help ensure we know as much about your cancer as possible.

Consider state-of-the-art treatment options

A second opinion may identify better, more advanced or more aggressive options, including the latest radiation therapies, such as proton therapy, or surgical techniques. 

Understand the benefits of specialized, multidisciplinary care

The team of anal cancer specialists from SCCA offers in-depth understanding of the full spectrum of treatments. We have first-hand knowledge of current research and a wealth of treatment experience.

Start with a course of therapy tailored to you

We focus on you, not just your cancer, when developing a treatment plan. We consider your goals, plans, beliefs, values and preferences to design your treatment holistically.

Learn whether genetics play a role

Your genetic make-up may have played a role in the development of your cancer, and it might impact your treatment. Depending on our findings, you and your family may benefit from SCCA’s Gastrointestinal Cancer Prevention Program.

Request a second opinion

We recognize that anal cancer is serious. Getting a second opinion does not have to delay the start of your treatment. We aim to see you quickly.

Metastatic A metastatic cancer is a cancer that has spread to other areas of the body by way of the lymph system or bloodstream. Pathologist A physician who has special training in identifying diseases by studying cells and tissues under a microscope. Radiation oncologist A physician who has special training in using radiation to treat cancer. Radiologist A physician who has special training in creating and interpreting pictures of areas inside the body. The pictures are made with X-rays, sound waves or other types of energy. Stage The extent of a cancer in the body. Staging is usually based on the size of the tumor, whether lymph nodes contain cancer and whether the cancer has spread from the original site to other parts of the body. Treatment plan A detailed plan with information about a patient’s disease, the goal of treatment, the treatment options for the disease and the possible side effects and expected length of treatment. A detailed plan with information about a patient’s disease, the goal of treatment, the treatment options for the disease and the possible side effects and expected length of treatment. A treatment plan may also include information about how much the treatment is likely to cost and about regular follow-up care after treatment ends.
phone (855) 557-0555 
Call us to schedule a second opinion with an SCCA doctor.
Second opinions

If you’ve been diagnosed with anal cancer, we recommend getting a second opinion before choosing where you’ll be treated. 

Facts

Most people with anal cancer are cured, especially if their cancer is diagnosed early. No matter what type or stage of anal cancer you have, treatments are available. SCCA offers comprehensive anal cancer treatment from a team of experts who specialize in gastrointestinal cancers.

Treatment

Seattle Cancer Care Alliance (SCCA) experts offer comprehensive care for Anal cancer, including advanced treatments and new options available only through clinical studies. Although anal cancer is uncommon, we treat it regularly here.

Clinical trial A type of research study that tests how well new medical approaches work in people. These studies test new methods of screening, prevention, diagnosis or treatment of a disease.

Providers

At SCCA, you receive care from a team of providers with extensive experience in your disease. Your team includes physicians, a patient care coordinator, a registered nurse, an advanced practice provider and others, based on your needs. You also have access to experts like nutritionists, social workers, acupuncturists, psychiatrists and more who specialize in supporting people with cancer or blood disorders.

Clinical trials

For some people, taking part in a clinical study may be the best treatment choice. Access to clinical studies by researchers at SCCA and our founding organizations Fred Hutch and UW Medicine is one reason many patients come to SCCA. 

Our research interests also include studies to better understand the basics of the disease and its risk factors and to help more patients receive a diagnosis earlier.

Clinical trial A type of research study that tests how well new medical approaches work in people. These studies test new methods of screening, prevention, diagnosis or treatment of a disease. Clinical trial A type of research study that tests how well new medical approaches work in people. These studies test new methods of screening, prevention, diagnosis or treatment of a disease.

Resources

There are many resources online for learning about your disease, as well as organizations that provide community and support for your cancer diagnosis. Health educators at the SCCA Patient and Family Resource Center have compiled a list of trusted sources to help you get started.