New drugs and combinations in the palliative treatment of colon and rectal cancer

G. D. Beretta, M. A. Pessi, P. Poletti, S. Mosconi, R. Labianca

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Colorectal cancer (CRC) is a common disease. The overall survival has improved only marginally in recent decades despite advances in surgery and early detection. Potentially curative resection at disease presentation can be performed only in 70-80% of the patients, and overall survival at 5 years is less than 60%. Advanced disease is associated with a poor prognosis. Treatment for advanced colorectal cancer has nevertheless made progress in the last few years. Systemic chemotherapy doubles the survival of these patients compared to untreated controls. Chemotherapy has demonstrated effective palliation, improvement of quality of life (QoL) and symptom improvement in such patients. For nearly four decades, fluorouracil (5FU) has been the mainstay of treatment. New compounds active against colorectal cancer are now available. Several studies on this topic are ongoing.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)595-600
Number of pages6
JournalEuropean Journal of Surgical Oncology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2001


  • Chemotherapy
  • Colorectal cancer

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Surgery


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