Small Intestine Cancer

Specialists at the Indiana University Health Melvin & Bren Simon Cancer Center are experts in confirming a diagnosis of small intestine cancer, helping patients understand it and working together to create a treatment plan.

Our physician team includes specialists who have advanced skills in treating small intestinal cancers and small bowel tumors. At the IU Health Melvin & Bren Simon Cancer Center, our medical oncologists (doctors who specialize in the treatment of cancer) collaborate with surgical oncologists, gastroenterologists, radiation oncologists and genomic scientists.

Your physician may prescribe additional diagnostic tests to determine the full extent of your cancer and develop the best treatment plan for your type of small intestine cancer. Our multidisciplinary approach involves specialists from every discipline related to your treatment. We schedule your care appointments for your convenience.

We are Indiana's only cancer center with a National Cancer Institute designation. Our patients have access to clinical trials and leading edge treatments through our partnership with the Indiana University School of Medicine.

Small Intestine Cancer Treatment

Treatment options for small intestine cancer vary, depending on the type of tumor, the stage of the cancer and your overall health. Your medical oncologist works with you to create a care plan designed around your treatment preferences.

  • Surgery. When surgery is possible, it delivers the most positive outcomes for small intestine cancer. We use minimally invasive procedures to remove the tumor and any affected surrounding tissues. Depending on the size and location of a tumor, surgery may rejoin the small intestine or bypass a section of the bowel. Both procedures can help restore function.
  • Chemotherapy. Chemotherapy targets cancer cells in tumors and cancer cells that spread to other parts of the body. We use chemotherapy after surgery to destroy any remaining cancer cells and stop them from spreading.
  • Clinical trials. Small intestine cancer is rare, and because of that, there are few approved and effective treatments. We often assist patients who are interested in experimental clinical trials.  
  • Precision genomics. At the IU Health Simon Cancer Center, multidisciplinary physicians work  together in our cancer research programs to evaluate the genetic variations of cancer cells. Results are compared to all available cancer treatments—for any type of cancer—to see if a treatment exists that targets the genetic traits of your cancer cells.
  • Radiation. On rare occasions, we may use radiation to target and destroy cancer cells or ease your symptoms. Radiation can be administered externally using high-energy X-rays. It can also be delivered inside the body with a needle or wire that carries a radioactive substance into or near the cancer.

Small Intestine Cancer Research

We are at the forefront of researching advanced treatments for small intestine cancer. We perform more clinical trials related to small intestine and gastrointestinal cancers than any other medical center in Indiana.

Through our National Cancer Institute designation and partnership with the Indiana University School of Medicine, our patients have access to highly trained cancer experts who are studying new surgeries and therapies to treat small intestine cancer.

IU Health Simon Cancer Center physicians use precision genomics to analyze the genetic markers of a patient’s cancer cells and find a targeted therapy to stop the cancer from growing. This complex analysis opens doors for new treatments.