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most often, anal cancer first spreads to the lungs, liver, brain, or bones, but it can spread anywhere. Treatment is aimed at controlling the disease for as long as possible and relieving symptoms as much as possible. Chemotherapy, sometimes along with radiation, is usually the standard treatment. Anal cancer treatment options include radiation therapy, chemotherapy, andor surgery. Get detailed information about newly diagnosed and recurrent anal cancer including risk factors, symptoms, diagnosis, prognosis, and treatment in this expert-reviewed summary. The treatment you have for anal cancer depends on where in your anus the cancer is, how big it is and whether it has spread to anywhere else in your body. after the cancer is found and staged, your cancer care team will talk with you about treatment options. A key goal of treatment is saving the anal sphincter muscles so you have bowel control and theres less impact in your overall quality of life. Anal cancer is different from colon and rectal cancer and has a different treatment pathway. The health professionals looking after you meet regularly as a team, called a multi-disciplinary team (mdt). Historically, all but the smallest anal cancers were treated with a radical surgery called abdominoperineal or ap resection, leading to a permanent end colostomy. About 70 of patients survived more than 5 years in limited studies of this approach. This is no longer the primary anal cancer treatment of choice. Chemotherapy and radiation without radical surgery are now favored. If caught early, anal cancer is highly treatable - with high survival rates. Read more from webmd about anal cancer, including symptoms and treatments. anal cancer is a rare form of cancer that affects the tissues of the anus. We explain what you need to know about its causes and how its diagnosed.