Anal cancer

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If anal cancer spreads

Cancer cells can spread from the anus to other parts of the body. This spread is called metastasis.

Understanding how a type of cancer usually grows and spreads helps your healthcare team plan your treatment and future care. If anal cancer spreads, it can spread to the following:

  • lymph nodes around the rectum (called the perirectal lymph nodes)
  • lymph nodes in the groin (called the inguinal lymph nodes)
  • lymph nodes in the pelvis (called the internal iliac lymph nodes)
  • rectum
  • bladder
  • urethra
  • vagina or prostate
  • liver
  • lungs
  • bone

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Making progress in the cancer fight

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The 5-year cancer survival rate has increased from 25% in the 1940s to 60% today.

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