Current Oncology Reports

, 20:3 | Cite as

Role of Chemotherapy in the Neoadjuvant/Adjuvant Setting for Patients With Rectal Adenocarcinoma Undergoing Chemoradiotherapy and Surgery or Radiotherapy and Surgery

  • Shahab Ahmed
  • Cathy EngEmail author
Gastrointestinal Cancers (J Meyer, Section Editor)
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on Gastrointestinal Cancers


Rectal cancer has been successfully managed in the last couple of decades. In the USA, as the initial approach, neoadjuvant concurrent chemoradiation has been associated not only with decrease in tumor size and recurrence but also with higher resection rate with minimal side effects. Data support that addition of chemotherapy to radiotherapy is superior to radiotherapy alone in the neoadjuvant setting. Recent debates have addressed the question of administration of adjuvant chemotherapy following surgery. In this article, we discuss the role of chemotherapy in both the neoadjuvant and the adjuvant settings for locally advanced rectal cancer.


Colorectal cancer Rectal cancer Locally advanced rectal cancer Neoadjuvant chemoradiation Adjuvant therapy 


Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

Shahab Ahmed and Cathy Eng declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Gastrointestinal Medical OncologyThe University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer CenterHoustonUSA

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