Read our introductory guide to treatment for bowel cancer, including how you may be able to claim compensation for inappropriate care.

What treatment options are available for bowel cancer?

Receiving a diagnosis of bowel cancer can understandably be the start of a very daunting time. However, if bowel cancer is detected in good time, there are a number of treatments that can cure the condition and, in many cases, prevent it from returning in the future.

Bowel cancer treatments

The most appropriate treatment will usually depend on which part of the bowel is affected and how far the cancer has spread; this is influenced by the stage at which the cancer is diagnosed. Usually, surgery is the main option; however, this may be accompanied by radiotherapy, chemotherapy or biological treatments.

Sadly, in advanced cases of bowel cancer, where the cancer cannot be completely removed surgically, a cure is unlikely. However, the symptoms of the condition and the spread of the disease may be managed using some or all of the therapies listed above.

Bowel cancer specialists

Treatment of bowel cancer is managed by a multi-disciplinary team of doctors, which will generally include; a specialist cancer surgeon, an oncologist (radiotherapy and chemotherapy specialist), a radiologist and a specialist nurse.

In order to determine the best treatment, the team should consider the type and size of the cancer, the patient's general health, whether the cancer has spread to other parts of the body and how aggressive the cancer is.

What if my diagnosis or treatment were inappropriate?

Delays in diagnosing bowel cancer, and misdiagnosis of the disease, can have very serious consequences. Mistakes do occur in the diagnosis of bowel cancer and, on occasion, people may be told that they have bowel cancer when in fact they do not. This can lead to unnecessary treatment.

For example, if the cancer is misdiagnosed, or there is an avoidable delay in diagnosis and, as a result, the cancer is diagnosed at a more advanced stage, the appropriate treatment may be more invasive and unpleasant than it would have been had the cancer been properly identified earlier.

Sadly, in some cases, a misdiagnosis or delay in the diagnosis of bowel cancer could mean that the treatment options are limited, as the cancer has spread and a cure is highly unlikely.

Bowel cancer compensation

If it appears that your bowel cancer treatment was inappropriate, we can help you to investigate whether you are entitled to compensation. We approach the best medical experts, who provide their opinions on whether the misdiagnosis or delay in diagnosing bowel cancer has made a difference to the overall treatment and/or chances of the condition being cured.

When someone has required more extensive treatment or, sadly, died due to misdiagnosis or a delay in diagnosis of bowel cancer, they or their families may be entitled to compensation.

Bowel cancer compensation can help meet the costs of specialist care, make up for lost earnings, buy aids and equipment and meet any other needs that may have developed. In the event of death, compensation can also provide a family with financial help.