Oncology Surgical Specialist Program
In surgical oncology, surgical methods are used to diagnose, stage, and treat cancer. A primary care physician, specialist, or medical oncologist may refer a patient to a surgical oncologist for evaluation and surgery. Surgery may be preventive, diagnostic, involve removing a cancerous tumor, made to help relieve symptoms, or be reconstructive.
A procedure, such as a biopsy, endoscopy, laparoscopy, or laparotomy, may be conducted to diagnose and stage cancer. During a biopsy, a sample of cells is removed from the body and then examined to determine if there are any cancer cells present. An endoscopy uses a scope to view and examine the inside of the body and a sample of cells can be removed if needed through the scope. In both a laparoscopy and laparotomy, a scope is also used to view inside the body, however an incision is made for the insertion and general anesthesia is used.
The type of surgical treatment used depends on the type, location, and size of the cancer and may be used as a primary treatment or in conjunction with other treatment such as chemotherapy and radiation. Surgery may be done before or after other treatments. Today’s advancements in surgical techniques offer many patients less invasive surgery options. Specialized techniques such as laser, Mohs, laparoscopic, or thorascopic surgery may be used to treat cancer.
As an Advance Oncology patient, you have access to leading surgical specialists. If your cancer treatment plan calls for surgical procedures, you will have the advantage of your medical oncologist and radiation oncologist working closely with your surgical specialist. This teamwork brings you multiple opinions and coordinated treatment for your total well-being.