Lake Charles Memorial Cancer Center patients who require surgery for cancer treatment can rely on the center's staff of experienced surgeons to work in conjunction with pathologists, the radiation oncologist and medical oncologists to formulate a complete surgical treatment plan.
Memorial Hospital employs the most advanced stereotactic radiosurgery technology, the Trilogy, to painlessly shrink or eliminate tumors and abnormalities, using focused beams of radiation. It enables doctors to deliver higher doses of radiation more precisely and in fewer treatment sessions than ever before possible. Though it’s called radiosurgery, the procedure does not involve the making of any incisions. Recovery and healing are fast, and you can resume normal activities shortly after treatment.
Lumpectomy removes the breast tumor (or "lump") and some of the normal tissue that surrounds it. Lumpectomy is a form of “breast-conserving” or "breast preservation" surgery. Most people receive radiation therapy shortly after a lumpectomy in order to eliminate any cancer cells that may be present in the remaining breast tissue. The combination of lumpectomy and radiation therapy is commonly called breast-conserving therapy. If chemotherapy is also part of the plan, radiation therapy happens after chemotherapy.
Depending on the breast cancer diagnosis, there are different types of surgical mastectomy that may be warranted. Simple or total mastectomy removes the breast, with its skin and nipple, but no lymph nodes. In some cases, a separate sentinel node biopsy is performed to remove only the first one to three axillary (armpit) lymph nodes. Modified radical mastectomy removes the entire breast, nipple/areolar region, and often the axillary lymph nodes. Radical mastectomy removes the entire breast, nipple/areolar region, the pectoral (chest) major and minor muscles, and lymph nodes. This procedure is rarely performed today. Quandrantectomy removes a quarter of the breast, including the skin and breast fascia (connective tissues). The surgeon may also perform a separate procedure to remove some or all of the axillary (armpit) lymph nodes, either axillary node biopsy or a sentinel node biopsy. Partial or segmental mastectomy removes a portion of the breast tissue and a margin of normal breast tissue. This procedure usually involves removing less tissue than a quandrantectomy but more than a lumpectomy.
Colorectal Cancer Surgery
The types of surgery used to treat colon and rectal cancers are slightly different. In colon cancer, a colectomy (sometimes called a hemicolectomy or segmental resection) involves removing part of the colon, as well as nearby lymph nodes. Laparoscopic-assisted colectomy is a newer approach to removing part of the colon and nearby lymph nodes that may be an option for some earlier stage cancers. Instead of making one long incision in the abdomen, the surgeon makes several smaller incisions. Special long instruments are inserted through these incisions to remove part of the colon and lymph nodes. One of the instruments has a small video camera on the end, which allows the surgeon to see inside the abdomen. Some early colon cancers (stage 0 and some early stage I tumors) or polyps can be removed by surgery through a colonoscope. When this is done, the surgeon does not have to cut into the abdomen. For a polypectomy, the cancer is cut out across the base of the polyp's stalk, the area that resembles the stem of a mushroom. Local excision removes superficial cancers and a small amount of nearby tissue.
Surgery is usually the main treatment for rectal cancer, although radiation and chemotherapy will often be given before or after surgery. Polypectomy and local excision, described in the colon surgery section, can be used to remove superficial cancers or polyps. They are done with instruments inserted through the anus, without making a surgical opening in the skin of the abdomen. As with polypectomy and local excision, local transanal resection is done with instruments inserted through the anus, without making an opening in the skin of the abdomen. This operation involves cutting through all layers of the rectum to remove invasive cancer as well as some surrounding normal rectal tissue. This procedure can be used to remove some stage I rectal cancers that are relatively small and not too far from the anus. Some stage I rectal cancers and most stage II or III cancers in the upper two thirds of the rectum (close to where it connects with the colon) can be removed by low anterior resection. In this procedure the tumor is removed without affecting the anus.