PeaceHealth Medical Group - Surgery

General Surgery Procedures Guide

Gall Bladder Removal (Laparoscopic Cholecystectomy)
The gall bladder is one of the body’s storage organs for bile. Bile is what is needed to digest fat. When your stomach receives food that is high in fat, your brain sends a message to release more bile into the stomach to break down the fat. Gallstones can form in the gall bladder. Typical symptoms of gallstones are constant upper abdominal pain or pressure. Sometimes this occurs after a meal. Nausea and vomiting may also occur. The best treatment for gallstones is surgical removal of the gallbladder with the gallstones. With today’s technology you may not have to have a large abdominal incision. The gall bladder can be visualized by using a telescope-like camera inserted through a tiny incision in the abdomen. Surgical instruments are inserted through other tiny incisions. The gall bladder is removed through an incision in the navel. This procedure will ordinarily allow you to go home from the hospital the same day.

Hernia Repair
A hernia is a small sac of tissue that protrudes through an opening in a muscle in your groin or your abdomen. A hernia can develop when the muscle wall is weak or tears. This allows the tissue sac to bulge through the muscle wall. Most of the time the only symptom is a lump that disappears when you lie down. You may experience discomfort or pain when the hernia is protruding. This discomfort will disappear when the sac of tissue falls back into its original position. Most hernias are repaired through an incision over the hernia. Sometimes mesh is inserted to strengthen the muscle wall. After a hernia repair, you can typically go home the same day.

The appendix is a soft narrow worm-like blind pouch at the end of the colon in the right lower section of the abdomen. It can become inflamed. This is called Appendicitis. Appendicitis usually presents as localized right lower quadrant pain with occasional nausea and vomiting, Loss of appetite and sometimes a low-grade fever are all symptoms of appendicitis. Surgery and antibiotics are the best treatments for appendicitis. The operation is performed through a small incision in the right lower abdomen. Most people go home from the hospital within 24 hours of surgery.

Lap Nissen (Laparoscopic Nissenfundoplication), Anti-reflux Surgery
Though medical therapy is helpful in most cases, many people will go on to have symptoms while on medication or have symptoms return if they stop taking the medication. It is in these people that anti-reflux surgery is sometimes the best solution. Reflux is generally the result of a herniation (bulging) of the upper portion of the stomach into the chest or an incompetent (leaky) esophageal sphincter. Symptoms are chronic heartburn, sour-tasting fluid in your throat and difficulty swallowing, especially after eating a meal. Sometimes these symptoms can be controlled with lifestyle changes, but more lasting relief may be achieved with surgery. The surgery is done using a small telescope-like camera inserted into the abdomen. Other small instruments are inserted through small incisions. Surgeons recreate the one-way valve where the esophagus meets the stomach recreating the normal anatomy of this area. You will ordinarily have to stay in the hospital after a lap nissen for one to three days.

Abscess Drainage
An incision is made in an area of infection to allow drainage of the infection (pus). This allows the body to heal more quickly.

There are many types of biopsies (sampling tissue to obtain a diagnosis). Some biopsies are done in the office and others in the hospital. A biopsy can be performed with a small needle aspirating (withdrawing) some cells, an incision (cutting or shaving a piece of tissue) from an area or an excision can be made to remove the whole area of concern. Biopsies are sent to the pathologist to evaluate the tissue and give a report of the findings.

Thyroid Procedures
There are some conditions of the thyroid that are best treated with partial or complete removal of the thyroid. Often before this is done, the surgeon may perform an ultrasound to look at the thyroid and do a fine needle biopsy (using a small needle to take a sample of cells from the nodule).

Compassion. Precision. Confidence.