Physicians in the GI Neoplasia Clinic specialize in the prevention, early detection, diagnostic evaluation and integrated management of luminal gastrointestinal pre-cancers and cancers. Physicians discuss several different ways to diagnose and determine risk of gastrointestinal cancers.
I think there are many exciting new things on the horizon for the care of patients with colorectal cancers or pre cancers as well as other cancerous conditions in the gi tract. There are um several companies that have developed blood based tests to try to detect colon cancer and other forms of cancer early when patients don't have symptoms. These are biomarker based tests that could be given to patients, say at an annual physical exam. They could be involving just a simple blood draw to try to screen for multiple different cancer types in terms of the predicting genetic risk. We would recommend that if somebody comes in and they have a family history of couple relatives with colon cancer or other cancers, they can then do these now cancer gene panels and we can get back results in 5 to 10 days that tell us you don't have an inherited type of mutation in one of 87 genes or whatever panels that we do. So that's really I think been a big bonus for people. It helps us as caregivers on a lot of levels too. We specialize in seeing patients that have relatively rare or uncommon pre cancerous or cancerous growths. Things like stromal tumors, carcinoid tumors, rare histological subtypes of cancer. Rectal cancers are very needing of multidisciplinary kind of tertiary care. The care is much more complicated. It's more complicated because we may be recommending chemotherapy and radiation first for almost every new rectal cancer case that we see. They will often begin in the neo plays a clinic with a gastroenterologist. But we offer the full range of care across the cancer continuum, really under a single location, with a multidisciplinary team of experts that can work together. The important thing to help patients and providers realizes that her hereditary cancer syndrome or an increased future risk of cancers is not a doom and gloom situation. We've begun implementing important advances, like the use of total neo adjuvant treatment for patients with locally advanced rectal cancers. Hot off the presses. Coming out of our recent american Society of Clinical Oncology meeting is the use of immune checkpoint inhibitor drugs for patients that have micro satellite, unstable colon and rectal cancers. Where we're seeing incredible treatment benefits that we haven't observed with traditional chemotherapy or surgery alone. When we identify an individual who is at risk, the testing that we do is designed to try to find pre cancerous growths that can be removed or treated and prevent patients from ever getting cancer in the first place.