get ready for a rollercoaster of pain, annoyances and then recovery and back to your normal self, well close to your normal self.
Let me explain. I had rectal cancer 9cm from anal verge. The first thing they do is what they did to you. Biopsy find out if its benign or malignant. Once that is done, then the surgeon will explain to you surgery or neoadjuvant therapy, which means Radiation plus chemo pills typically pill named xeloda. Radiation is usually for 30 days and the first 2 weeks not bad, the day right after two weeks you might feel like your shitting glass. It is extremely painful to have a bowel movement. You will be using all kinds of lotions, sitz baths, etc...The chemo pills I really had no side effects other then my hands and feet pigmentation turning dark. It cleared up after like 2-3 months. The Butt Burn from RAdiation (sunburn in your anus basically) subsides about 2-3 weeks after finishing radiation. Most people come out with the tumor totally gone, meaning disappeared. But that doesn't mean its gone and there could be microcells so listen to your doctors.
Usually after a month rest, they do surgery. Usually its called a LAR (Lower Anterior Resection or TME Total Mesorectal Excision combined). This means they remove your entire rectum and will give you an ileostomy bag for the joined colon to anus (called colo-anal anastomosis) to heal. I had the bag for 6 months, it was a piece of cake, the first 2 month was a little annoying just getting accustom to it and figuring out the ups and downs and how to cope/work around them. It's really very easy. After six month you will be giving the option to reverse the bag and poop the normal way. Once you losing your rectum pooping is a whole different ball game, it is not as much fun for the first couple weeks, I went 25-40 times for the first week or two and then it gradually got better. The biggest issue is the unpredictability of when I need to go to the bathroom. Clustering is another annoyance of not having a rectum. You poop then go back tot he bathroom for like 10 more times every 5-30 minutes. Taking Metamucil or a fiber supplement plus Imodium will be your friend, but you will never be normal in the pooping arena again. You will have a new normal.
Once surgery is done, your hoping for clean margins and usually your cured. Sometimes your not and its unfortunate and it metastasize, but it is still beatable at stage 4. Typically at your situation you might be stage 3, but don't worry its beatable.
Keep us posted. Keep in mind everyone is different sometimes what happens to others won't happen for you. Like your pain with Radiation might not be bad, chemo pills might affect you more, etc....
Good Luck Brother and keep us posted.
RC T3N1M0 12/16
MSS - NRAS Mutation
Chemo Rad, CCR - W&W 5/2017
CT Scan 11/2017 Liver Met 5.5cm Stable, Stage IV
Port Scheduled for 12/2017, folfox - avastin 12/2017
Blood Clot in Neck 1/2018, stop avastin, continue FolFox
LAR/Liver Resect 4/2018
Chemo Finish 8/2018
CEA highest 500, lowest .8 throughout process, waiting for latest
Recurrence left seminal vescial/pelvic sidewall - 10/7/2019 resection surgery, perm bag, requested
FolFiri 11/6 - 5 rounds