Colorectal surgery

We offer a comprehensive range of services for the management of colorectal disease.

Colorectal cancer

The Surrey and Sussex Colorectal Cancer team is led by Mr John Grabham. The team comprises surgeons, radiologists, pathologists, oncologists and specialist nurses who are sub-speciality trained in the management of colorectal cancer.

We are the busiest unit in the region and deliver high quality clinical care. The rate of positive surgical margins (where there is a risk that the primary disease has not been completely removed) is less than 1%.

Similarly, local recurrence following curative surgery (for T1 – T3 tumours) is less than 1%. Our cancer specific, disease-free survival rates are consequently comparable to the best units in the country.

Laparoscopic colorectal surgery

The laparoscopic colorectal service is led by Mr Neil Smith. Selected patients requiring treatment for either malignant (cancer) or benign (non-cancer) diseases may be suitable for laparoscopic (key-hole) surgery. This involves the use of a fibre optic camera and specialised surgical instruments introduced through very small (1cm) incisions. One of these incisions is then enlarged to allow the operative specimen to be removed.

The operation time for key-hole surgery is often longer but patients will usually have smaller scars contributing to a faster post-operative recovery and shorter hospital stay. Not every patient is suitable for a laparoscopic approach and some laparoscopic procedures may need to be converted to open surgery.

Benign ano-rectal problems

We have well-developed services for the management of patients with haemorrhoids, fissures, fistulas and pilonidal disease. Patients with rectal bleeding are often initially assessed by direct access flexible sigmoidoscopy. Patients who have been referred will be contacted to arrange a convenient appointment.

Simple treatments, such as banding of haemorrhoids, can often be administered at the same appointment without the need for subsequent follow-up.