Riverside Surgical Associations, Inc.
SURGICAL PROCEDURES

MINIMALLY INVASIVE SURGERY

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Surgeons at Riverside Surgical Associates utilize minimally invasive techniques for surgical procedures when applicable. These techniques involve the use of a video camera, or laparoscope, which is placed into the abdomen to visualize the anatomy. This “laparoscopic” surgery allows the surgeons to use smaller incisions that generally result in less postoperative pain and a faster return to activities.

Examples of these minimally invasive surgeries performed by the surgeons at Riverside Surgical Associates include operations involving stomach tumors, small bowel diseases, gastroesophageal reflux disease, hiatal hernias, benign and malignant colon diseases, gallbladder problems and a variety of hernia surgeries including groin and incisional hernias. Your surgeon can advise you if you are candidate for these procedures.

GASTROESOPHAGEAL REFLUX DISEASE (GERD) SURGERY

Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease Surgery Animation
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More than 40% of Americans experience reflux symptoms once a month and over 7% experience reflux everyday. Symptoms of reflux may include heartburn, regurgitation, chest pain, difficulty swallowing, chronic cough and asthma. The vast majority of Americans get symptom relief from prescription medications that are now even available over the counter. However, some individuals may have severe symptoms that require escalating doses of medication or result in damage to their esophagus. These individuals may be candidates for a minimally invasive surgical correction of their reflux disease. Your surgeon can explain our approach to this disease and inform you whether or not you are candidate for this surgery.

GALLBLADDER SURGERY

Gallbladder Surgery Animation
Patient Information for Laparoscopic Gallbladder Removal

Approximately 10% of all Americans develop gallstones resulting in over 500,000 gallbladder operations every year in the United States. The most common symptoms of gallstones are nausea and pain in the right upper abdomen just below the rib cage. These symptoms are often brought on after eating a meal that is high in fat and can last from minutes to several hours. An ultrasound is the most common test used to diagnose gallstones. Your doctor may order other specialized tests, such as a PIPIDA scan or an MRI, if needed. The most common gallbladder surgery performed utilizes a minimally invasive surgical technique called laparoscopic cholecystectomy. This procedure is performed through small incisions, and because of this, there is less pain and a more rapid recovery than the conventional technique. As with all procedures, your surgeon will explain the benefits and risks of the surgery and whether or not you are a candidate.

BREAST SURGERY

One out of eight women will develop breast cancer, and breast cancer is the second leading cause of death in women. Early detection is the key to achieving high cure rates, and cures can often be achieved by the modern techniques of breast conserving treatment. The American Cancer Society provides guidelines for scheduling a mammogram.

  • Age 35 to 39 Baseline mammogram
  • Age 40 to 49 Mammogram every one to two years
  • Age 50 and over Mammogram every year

Surgeons at Riverside Surgical Associates are experienced in the comprehensive treatment of breast cancers from detection to biopsy to removal of the cancer. After a thorough review of your history by your surgeon, a physical exam will be performed. Your surgeon will personally review your X-rays. Based on all of the information obtained at your visit, further testing or a biopsy may be recommended. Our surgeons utilize the latest state of the art techniques, such as stereotactic needle biopsy and sentinel node biopsy. If a cancer is detected, your surgeon, with the excellent support of the Breast Health Center at Riverside Methodist Hospital, will see you through the entire process of treatment.

COLON SURGERY

Colon Surgery Animation
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Patient Information for Laparoscopic Gallbladder Removal

Colon cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in this country. The diagnosis is usually made by a colonoscopy. If a tumor or mass is encountered on colonoscopy, the endoscopist will likely perform biopsies. If the biopsies demonstrate malignancy, or if the tumor is too large for the endoscopist to extract, you will be referred to a surgeon. Traditional surgery for colon cancer involves an open procedure where the affected portion of the colon is removed and the two ends are sewn back together. This approach is recommended in certain circumstances. Surgeons at Riverside Surgical Associates are also trained and experienced in minimally invasive colon surgery. If you are an appropriate candidate, your colon may be removed through a laparoscope. This usually involves decreased pain, less hospital stay and shorter recovery time.

COLON SURGERY FOR BENIGN DISEASE

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Colon surgery is also performed for non-cancerous conditions, such as benign polyps, strictures, Crohn's disease, and diverticulitis. Diverticulitis is quite common and is thought to be associated with the low fiber diets of the Western world. High pressure in the colon causes an out-pouching, or diverticula, to form. These diverticula can become infected causing pain in the left lower abdomen and fever. Most patients will respond to antibiotic treatment; however, a significant number of people will require surgery, either emergent or elective, to treat the diseased portion of the colon. This surgery can often be done laparoscopically, and your surgeon will advise you which surgery is best for you.

HERNIA SURGERY

Ventral Hernia Surgery Animation
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A hernia is a protrusion of an organ or tissue through a weakness in the muscle wall of the body. This protrusion creates a bulge, which is often visible and palpable. Hernias can be caused by sudden increases in abdominal pressure, normal wear and tear of the aging process, and some can be present at birth. Hernias are extremely common and each year, close to 700,000 people seek treatment in this country alone. Inguinal hernias are the most common type of hernia encountered with over 500,000 operations being performed annually. Surgeons at Riverside Surgical Associates use both laparoscopic and open techniques to perform tension-free repairs that result in the least amount of pain and quickest return to normal activities. Hernia surgery usually involves implanting a piece of synthetic mesh to assure that the hernia does not recur.

EMERGENCY SURGERY

Appendectomy Animation
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Acute appendicitis, which is the inflammation or infection of the appendix, is a common reason people present to the emergency room with abdominal pain. Prompt surgical treatment is important to prevent the appendix from rupturing. This surgery can often be done laparoscopically, and in most cases, with an overnight stay in the hospital. Bowel obstructions, perforated intestines, stomach ulcers, and bleeding intestinal problems are other common surgical emergencies that your surgeon treats on a regular basis. In addition, all surgeons at Riverside Surgical Associates are trained in Advanced Trauma Life Support and are responsible for the trauma care at Riverside Methodist Hospital.

RECTAL SURGERY

Hemorrhoids are clusters of swollen veins in and around the anal canal that may cause itching, and at times, severe pain. You may be referred to a surgeon if your hemorrhoids suddenly become thrombosed, or blocked with a blood clot, causing severe pain. Other indications to see a surgeon might be for chronic irritation, such as itching, burning or bleeding. Some hemorrhoids can be treated in the office with a procedure called banding. This is commonly performed on hemorrhoids that bleed and that are high up in the anal canal where the tissue does not have nerve supply. In some cases, hemorrhoids need to be treated surgically, which can be done at the hospital or at an outpatient surgery center.

PERIRECTAL ABSCESSES

The presence of pain, redness or swelling of the skin around the anal opening might indicate a perirectal abscess. These abscesses arise from small crypts higher up in the anal canal and track outward toward the skin. They often require surgical drainage, which can usually be accomplished in the office with local anesthesia. Fistulas can occasionally occur and require additional surgical procedures, which are also most likely performed at the hospital or outpatient surgery center.

PILONIDAL CYSTS

Pilonidal cysts present as infections in the skin overlying the tailbone or sacrum. These can cause chronic infections and drainage and are best treated with surgical excision of the tissue involved.