Patient quote

"I wish to express my gratitude for the care I received during my colonoscopy.  Mr Horgan's team and all the staff on Ward 21 were extremely helpful, caring and efficient.  It was a job well done and I would be grateful if you could pass on my thanks!"  Mr AT

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Jargon buster


A procedure that enables an examiner (usually a gastroenterologist) to screen your colon (large bowel) for abnormalities.

View the full jargon buster

Surgical Services

Colorectal (Bowel) Surgery

Contact: (0191) 282 4116 - (RVI) or (0191) 213 7665 (Freeman Hospital) - Colorectal Nurse Specialists

Our Colorectal Surgery Unit is the largest of its kind in the North East, providing expert care and treatment at both the Freeman Hospital and the Royal Victoria Infirmary. 

You can be referred from anywhere in the region, by your GP or by another hospital doctor, for a wide range of investigations to help diagnose the cause of bowel symptoms and conditions including:

  • benign (non-cancerous) colorectal disease
  • colorectal cancer
  • inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
  • functional colorectal disease ie. constipation and faecal incontinence

Due to our expertise in the field of colorectal surgery we see many patients with complex problems who have been referred from other hospitals who do not have the necessary skills and facilities.

National renowned experts in their field

We are the regional treatment centre for a range of complex colorectal conditions, including many colorectal cancers:

  • selected early rectal cancers
  • retroperitoneal (abdominal) and pelvic cancer
  • advanced and recurrent anal cancer

We are the largest and most established unit in the North East offering specialist treatments such as biofeedback - a type of therapy to help control the symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) - and sacral nerve stimulation - bowel retraining to help treat faecal incontinence. Our colorectal surgeons are the only specialists in the North East who perform Trans Anal Endoscopic Microsurgery (TEMS), a leading technique for the treatment of large rectal adenomas (polyps) and some small rectal cancers.

Two of our colorectal surgeons, Mr A Horgan and Mr H Gallagher are nationally renowned experts in colorectal laparoscopic (keyhole) surgery and are two of only ten consultants in the UK able to provide clinical training for this type of surgery. We also provide keyhole surgery for hernia operations.

Clinical expertise and advice where and when you need it

We have a team of Colorectal Nurse Specialists to provide you with advice and support on all aspects of your care, for all colorectal conditions, from the point of diagnosis through treatment and follow-up care.

The unit is a national leader in enhanced post operative recovery techniques and by using innovative methods of care, together with state of the art technology, we have reduced the length of hospital stay required following major colorectal surgery. Wherever possible we offer ‘one stop’ clinics where a diagnosis can be made and treatment started on the same day, preventing the need for an unnecessary return visit. 

Our Nurse Endoscopist also runs an award winning sigmoidoscopy clinic based in a GP practice, at the Biddlestone Road Health Centre in Heaton, so that you don’t have to come into hospital.

Contact us

If you would like to find out more about our services please contact one of our Colorectal Nurse Specialists:


Freeman Hospital     Royal Victoria Infirmary
  • Liz Robinson
  • Ruth Christer
  • Clare Bird
  • Allison Sharpe
  • Andrea Read
  • Deborah Hall
  • Lynn Stewart
Colorectal Nurse Specialists Colorectal Nurse Specialists
Telephone:  (0191) 213 7665    Telephone: (0191) 282 4116


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