Sometimes the most effective way to treat a malignant tumor is to surgically excise (remove) the diseased tissue. A general surgeon may be chosen for this task when the cancer is present in the breast, gastrointestinal (GI) tract, liver or endocrine system, and potentially for melanoma and sarcoma as well. Once the tumor has been removed, additional therapies may be recommended to lower the chance of recurrence. These treatments may include radiotherapy, chemotherapy, or ultrasound or laser surgery. Early detection and the latest techniques and technologies are used to achieve the best possible outcome.
Diagnostic laparoscopy involves the insertion of a thin camera-tipped instrument called a laparoscope through a small incision to examine a patient’s abdomen or pelvis (including fallopian tubes, ovaries, uterus, small and large bowels, appendix, liver and gallbladder). This is typically done to confirm the presence or absence of a problem when noninvasive tests prove inconclusive, and helps the surgeon determine the proper course of treatment.
The procedure is often recommended when there is the suspected presence of endometriosis, ectopic pregnancy, pelvic inflammatory disease, cancer, cholecystitis (inflammation of the gallbladder) and appendicitis. Diagnostic laparoscopy can detect a number of problems of the abdomen, including:
- Ovarian cysts
- Abnormal union of body surfaces
- Uterine fibroids
- Pelvic inflammatory disease
- Metastatic cancer
- Signs of trauma
A hernia occurs when tissue or part of an organ, usually the intestines, protrudes through a weak point or tear in the abdominal wall, forming a sac. The protruding tissue may lose blood supply and become obstructed. Patients with a hernia may experience pain in the groin or abdomen when lifting heavy objects, coughing or straining during urination or bowel movements.
Some of the different types of hernias we treat include:
- Femoral hernia
- Hiatal hernia
- Incisional hernia
- Inguinal hernia
- Umbilical hernia
- Ventral hernia
Surgery is the only method to correct hernias and aims to alleviate pain and to correct or prevent the occurrence of more serious problems. Surgery should be performed on any hernia, but it is especially recommended for patients with pain, who are at high risk for blockage such as large amounts of tissue protruding through a small hole, and whose lives are hampered by the hernia. Hernia repair surgery may be performed using traditional open or more minimally-invasive laparoscopic techniques.
Hemorrhoids occur when the veins located around the anal opening become dilated due to pressure associated with constipation. Hemorrhoids may be internal (above the dentate line, which divides sensitive from insensitive anal skin) and painless or external (below the dentate line) and potentially painful. Symptoms may include bleeding, leakage of mucous or feces, itching and pain.
Minor hemorrhoids can be treated with creams and suppositories, stool softeners, Sitz (warm water) baths and by blotting the peri-anal area with a wet wipe or toilet paper after a bowel movement. Patients with more severe pain may opt for surgical draining or removal of thrombosed hemorrhoids, which may include:
- Rubber band ligation
- Infrared coagulation
- Surgical hemorrhoidectomy
- Stapled hemorrhoidectomy
Incision & Drainage
Incision and drainage, or I & D, is commonly used to treat abscesses or other fluid-filled lesions on the skin that do not respond to antibiotics or other more conservative treatments. During this procedure, a scalpel or needle is inserted into the lesion to drain the pus or fluid within. A piece of gauze is then placed so that the lesion can continue to drain and heal properly.
A distal pancreatectomy is a surgical procedure used to treat cancer, tumors and cysts within the pancreas by removing the tail end of the organ. It is most effective for treating cancer that is localized within the end of the pancreas without the need for surgical reconstruction, but can also be used to treat chronic cases of pancreatitis and pancreas trauma. Pancreatectomy can often be performed laparoscopically.
Pilonidal Cyst Removal
A pilonidal cyst or abscess is a fluid-filled sac like a pimple at the tailbone. Medical treatment involves making an incision so the fluid can drain, known as lancing the abscess. If the cyst is lanced, any hair follicles inside will be removed to minimize the chance of recurrence.
Thyroid surgery is used to treat several different thyroid conditions such as nodules, cancer and hyperthyroidism. Surgery is often considered a last resort for thyroid conditions and may be used if more conservative treatments have failed, a condition is recurrent, or cancer is present. Thyroid surgery removes part or all of the thyroid gland, depending on the type and severity of the condition.
Thyroid surgeries are performed through an incision in the middle of the neck. The procedure usually takes about two hours and is done under general anesthesia. The different types of thyroid surgery include:
- Thyroid lobectomy – only the lobe of the thyroid is removed if a thyroid nodule is confined to just that area.
- Subtotal thyroidectomy – one complete lobe, the isthmus, and part of the other lobe is removed. This is typically used for hyperthyroidism caused by Graves’ disease and small cancers.
- Total thyroidectomy – the entire thyroid gland and surrounding lymph nodes are removed. This is the most common procedure for thyroid cancer to completely remove the disease.