What is the Anus?
The anus is the opening at the lower end of the intestines. The anal opening is connected to the rectum by the anal canal. The anal canal is about an inch and a half long and goes from the rectum to the outside skin at the anus.
What is Anal cancer?
The inner lining of the anal canal is the mucosa. Most anal cancers start from cells in the mucosa. There are several types of anal cancer:
Squamous cell carcinomas: Most anal cancers in the United States are squamous cell carcinomas. These tumors come from the squamous cells that line most of the anal canal and the anal margin. Squamous cell carcinomas in the anal canal have grown beyond the surface and into the deeper layers of the lining.
Adenocarcinomas: A small number of anal cancers are known as adenocarcinomas. These can develop in cells that line the upper part of the anus near the rectum, or in the glands under the anal mucosa that release their secretions into the anal canal.
Basal cell carcinomas: Basal cell carcinomas are a type of skin cancer that can develop in the perianal skin. These tumors are much more common in areas of skin exposed to the sun, such as the face and hands, and account for only a small number of anal cancers.
Melanomas: These cancers develop from cells in the skin or anal lining that make the brown pigment called melanin. Only a very small portion of anal cancers are melanomas. Melanomas are far more common on the skin in other parts of the body.
Gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GISTs): These cancers are much more common in the stomach or small intestine, but rarely they can start in the anal region.
Signs and symptoms of Anal cancer
Symptoms could include:
• Anal bleeding
• Persistent or recurring anal itching
• Persistent or recurring pain in the anal area
• The feeling of a lump or mass in the anus
• Change in bowel habits (going to the bathroom more or less frequently) or increased strain during bowel movement
• A narrowing of the diameter of stool
• Abnormal discharge from the anus
• Swollen lymph nodes in the anal or groin areas
Traditional treatment options for Anal Cancer
There are various treatment options for Anal Cancer including surgery, chemotherapy and radiation.
Utopia Wellness’ Intensive Medical Program for Anal Cancer
Anal Cancer is a very stressful diagnosis and your Utopia Wellness team understands this. We work with you to design a customized holistic plan to ensure you have the most effective alternative treatments for your specific cancer.