Colorectal Unit

Gastroenterology

Covid-19 - Crohn’s and Colitis

We are working with Crohn’s and Colitis UK and British Society of Gastroenterology to keep the most up-to-date information in the public domain.

For the latest advice please visit the Crohn’s and Colitis UK website.

The Cambridge Colorectal Unit is part of the Department of General Surgery at Addenbrooke's.

Patient information

The Cambridge Colorectal Unit aims to provide a comprehensive specialist service to care for patients with all colorectal (lower bowel) disorders. Patients will be guided by a dedicated team of doctors, nurses and allied professionals through their encounter with the Unit from their first clinic visit, to surgery (if required) and then follow-up.

Conditions treated by the team include: anal fissures, anal fistulas, bowel polyps, bowel prolapse, bowel cancer (cancer of the colon and rectum), diverticular disease, haemorrhoids (piles), incontinence, inflammatory bowel disease (colitis and Crohn's), minor anal conditions: skin tags, fibroepithelial polyps, external haemorrhoids, warts, pilonidal sinus and pruritus ani (anal itchiness). Many patients can be diagnosed and treated in the clinic. For example, most patients with haemorrhoids are suitable for outpatient treatment. Other patients will require investigations, and we have access to the full range of specialist investigations for colorectal diseases.

Referral information

The majority of patients are referred by their general practitioner (GP), and are initially seen in the outpatient clinic. Others will be referred by hospital consultants, or are admitted through the emergency department

Patients with suspected colorectal cancer will be referred by their GP to the 2ww LGI suspected cancer service. This is a nurse led service where patients are triaged as straight to test or assessed in clinic by a trained clinical nurse specialist and investigations arranged accordingly on a fast track pathway. Clinic or investigations will be within two weeks of GP referral.

When a diagnosis of cancer is made, treatment for each patient is discussed by a multidisciplinary team of cancer experts including colorectal surgeons, radiologists, histopathologists, oncologists and specialist nurses, all of whom play a part in supporting patients and family through their cancer journey. This is to ensure care is determined on an individual basis and tailored to specific patient’s needs. If no cancer is found, patient will be notified within 28 days.

Any non-clinical urgent incidental findings found during diagnostic investigation process will be discharged back to their GP with appropriate recommendations. The majority of patients are referred by their general practitioner (GP), and are initially seen in the outpatient clinic. Others will be referred by hospital consultants, or are admitted through the Emergency Department