Welcome To Living With LARS

This site is dedicated to the people, 1.8 million new cases just in 2018, that have been diagnosed with rectal cancer and in particular to those that have had the procedure known as the Low Anterior Resection. More than 80% of those who have had the LAR are living with Low Anterior Resection Syndrome.

This site has been created by patients for patients and offers support and information to help you understand this condition and learn how to manage it.

Important note: this site is not intended to be medical advice. Your doctor and/or care team understand your specific medical condition and history and together you can work with them to create a plan that may help you improve over time. If you wish to use any information on this site for treatment purposes, discuss it in detail with your doctor to confirm whether it is suitable for you.

There is also a private group FACEBOOK page for people who are living with LARS. If you have LARS, you are invited to join the conversation and receive fantastic support from other survivors. Click here to see our group.

The creators of this website have also prepared an extensive patient-to-patient guide that provides this important information on LARS in printable form. Download the guide by pressing the button below.

Living “life to the fullest” with LARS

It’s natural to focus our attention on how to manage, on a day-to-day basis, the challenging symptoms we face with LARS. This site is designed to provide management information to help reduce these challenges.

A couple of days ago, a member of our Facebook group (sorry, this is a closed group so access is only available to those with LARS) posted a wonderful question asking what motivates us to fight this condition. Remember that this fight includes multiple surgeries, horrid chemotherapy drugs, valuable time away from family and friends, inability to work and live as before, daily pain and stress, etc, etc.

The responses to this post included spending irreplaceable time with our children, grandchildren, and spouses. Helping others with LARS. Another responded that he had many years ahead that he wanted to squeeze out kicking and screaming.

Jeanne responded that she wants to live and to live with joy.

I so agree with all of these desires. My wife and I recently had our vacation in Italy and I want to share some of my specific reasons for fighting on, all of which are the same as the responses summarized above:

Here’s a photo of one of my bucket list items……… climbing the awesome volcano, Mount Etna, in Sicily:

Shendah and Joe, Mt. Etna, Nov. 2019

Sunset on the Amalfi Coast:

The Island of Ischia:

The Garden Of Ninfa:

There are just so many beautiful things in this world and so many reasons worth fighting on for.


Food Intolerance and LARS- Perhaps a Connection?

Recently I purchased an at home food intolerance/sensitivity test. To be honest- I had no LARS related reasoning behind doing it. It was a quick and easy way for me to test against over 800 foods and it was a decent price- so I thought … “What the Heck!”. I was totally shocked at the results of the test (which by the way was a hair follicle test). Not only did it show moderate intolerance to the foods I had “known allergies” such as eggs and shrimp but there were other under a major intolerance that I avoided due to what I thought were LARS related issues. For example, watermelon was on the list as was red dye. Both I thought were things I thought I had to avoid due to LARS. Apparently there was something else going on.

I am not saying that everything we eat that causes us issues- is a food intolerance – but perhaps some are and cause some of us more issues than others. I wonder if we all knew what our natural sensitivities were, if we could narrow down the food list for those living with LARS,

FYI- for those wondering- I attached a photo of my results- and I got this test from The Allergy Testing Company- I can’t ignore the things that got correct- So I believe these are accurate to a degree.