Experience a Cutting-Edge Approach to Colon Cancer Treatment Without Surgery

Meet Mr. Nattapong Sukhavisidh, a 77-year-old Thai gentleman who, regrettably, missed his routine health check-ups for a decade. When it was finally time to recommence his health assessments, his healthcare provider wisely recommended a colonoscopy, given his age and the importance of colorectal cancer screening. During this examination, several small colon polyps were identified. Additionally, a substantial 2 cm polyp within his colon was discovered, which could not be removed through conventional endoscopic methods. This marked the beginning of a groundbreaking treatment journey for early-stage colon cancer with the utilization of FTRD (Full-Thickness Resection Device), an innovative approach that eliminates the need for surgical incisions.

Mr. Nattapong graciously shares his remarkable experience and the exceptional care he received at Bumrungrad International Hospital.

Q: After learning about the presence of numerous colon polyps, did you have any concerns? 
A: When Dr. Nusont informed me of the presence of multiple colon polyps, I wasn't overly worried. My wife had previously undergone a similar procedure for the same condition, and her polyps were completely removed. This gave me some reassurance that the situation wasn't excessively serious.

Q: When the doctor told you about the 2 cm colon polyp that couldn't be removed with standard endoscopic techniques, what treatment options were presented to you?
A: During the colonoscopy, Dr. Nusont successfully removed multiple colon polyps, but one challenging 2 cm polyp remained. This stubborn polyp couldn't be removed using conventional methods, signifying a potential deeper tissue invasion. Dr. Nusont advised scheduling another colonoscopy, which might require a specialized approach with a sophisticated device. He recommended me to consult with Dr. Tossapol, who unveiled a revolutionary alternative to conventional abdominal surgery – an advanced endoscopic technique. It's worth noting that Bumrungrad International Hospital proudly leads the way in Thailand as the first institution to pioneer this innovative approach. This technique involves the deployment of the FTRD (Full-Thickness Resection Device), specially designed for the effective and safe resection of early-stage colon cancer. Importantly, it significantly reduces the risk of perforation and bleeding compared to traditional methods. Given the suspicion of early-stage colon cancer, complete resection is critical to ensure that no cancerous tissue remains at the site. Dr. Tossapol also emphasized that this endoscopic procedure, performed via the anus, would require only an overnight hospital stay, sparing me from any abdominal incisions.


Q: How long did it take for you to decide to proceed with the endoscopic procedure?
A: It didn't take long at all. Dr. Tossapol provided a thorough explanation of the procedure, its pros and cons, and all the procedural steps. I also had complete confidence in Bumrungrad, its medical team, and support staff. Dr. Tossapol shared compelling data from studies conducted in Germany and various European countries, demonstrating the effectiveness and safety of the FTRD procedure. These factors, alongside the absence of any abdominal surgical scars, resonated with me, as I prefer to avoid surgical scars unless absolutely necessary.

Q: How long did the preparation and actual procedure take?
A: The preparation was quite similar to a routine colonoscopy, taking less than an hour. The next thing I knew, I was back in my inpatient room. I experienced no pain or discomfort, and Dr. Tossapol was ready to discharge me the day after the procedure.

Q: What did the doctor inform you about the treatment outcome?
A: Dr. Tossapol shared that the tissue analysis confirmed early-stage colon cancer, which was a bit surprising. I inquired about the next steps for treatment. He reassured me that the resection was complete, with no cancer cells found at the edge of the resected specimen, thanks to the removal of the entire polyp in one piece. Only follow-up clinic visits were necessary.
Dr. Tossapol also presented the standard of care in the United States, following the National Comprehensive Cancer Network Guidelines. I underwent abdominal and chest computed tomography scans, CEA tumor marker blood tests, consultations with a Medical Oncology specialist, and a Colorectal surgeon. All test results were reassuring. The specialists confirmed that the early-stage colon cancer was indeed at an early stage and had not spread to small vessels, lymphatic vessels, or nerves. An experienced gastrointestinal pathologist verified these findings. Bumrungrad International Hospital holds a weekly multidisciplinary tumor board meeting, which included my case. The panel unanimously agreed that my early-stage colon cancer had been fully resected. The entire tissue removed measured 5 cm, while the cancer was only 2 cm. Consequently, I did not require chemotherapy, radiation therapy, or further surgery.

Q:How do you feel about celebrating your first year post-treatment, often referred to as the "cancer-versary"?
A: Following the procedure, I attended regular clinic appointments as advised by Dr. Tossapol. I have taken great care of myself, including adopting a healthier diet, engaging in exercise, and maintaining a healthy weight. I've also reduced my consumption of red meat. Dr. Tossapol conducted a one-year follow-up colonoscopy, consistent with American standards, which showed no evidence of cancer recurrence. The FTRD treatment for early-stage colon cancer has completely altered my perspective on conventional cancer treatments. It's quick, safe, and allows me to resume my daily activities immediately.

During my repeat colonoscopy, Dr. Tossapol also recommended an upper endoscopy, a critical decision that unveiled my precancerous stomach condition, which could have easily gone unnoticed. This condition is relatively common, affecting up to 36% of the general population. Dr. Tossapol skillfully resolved the precancerous stomach condition using a non-invasive oral endoscopic procedure.

Q: What is your impression of Bumrungrad's medical and nursing teams?
A: I would like to extend my sincere gratitude to Dr. Nusont and Dr. Tossapol, as well as the entire medical and support staff at Bumrungrad. Their exceptional care and guidance made the entire experience remarkably comforting. Their treatment approach aligns with my preferences, as an elderly individual who may not tolerate surgery or chemotherapy well. Furthermore, Dr. Tossapol recommended a genetic evaluation to rule out inherited cancer syndromes, which helped determine our family's cancer risk. Fortunately, no genetic mutations were found, reassuring us that our cancer risk is not elevated compared to the general population. I am deeply grateful for the extraordinary teamwork exhibited by Bumrungrad International Hospital.

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