This health video will focus on the new less invasive procedures that can be used to treat Colon cancer and other diseases.
Read the full transcript »
Dr. Dean Edell: No patient wants to hear they need surgery. People associated with blood, pain, and long recovery but technology has changed the way surgeons can do their work with a variety of minimally invasive procedures that can lead to a rapid recovery. What do hernias and hemorrhoids have in common with hysterectomies and colon cancer. All of these conditions can now be treated with -- Jay Redan: Laparoscopic are minimally invasive surgery. Richard Whelan: You are out of the hospital a bit sooner and also they require less pain medication while we are in the hospital. Dr. Dean Edell: Minimally invasive procedures are performed using several small incisions rather than big open ones. Doctors use a scaled-down camera or laparoscope to see inside the body. Tiny tools are used to remove a diseased organ or to make surgical repairs. Jay Redan: All the instrumentation we used to use during an open procedure is now miniaturized, to the point where we can introduce it through trocars with small openings into someone's abdomen. Dr. Dean Edell: Minimally invasive procedures can be used to repair ventral hernias, treat colon diseases, perform hysterectomy and even remove cancerous tumors, appendices, and gallbladder. Robert Feinstein: I have always told them that if you get bad news, don't panic, think about it. Dr. Dean Edell: Dermatologist Robert Feinstein is used to treating patients, not being one, so we had to follow his own advice when his doctor told him he had colon cancer. Robert Feinstein: I was not panicked at all. Dr. Dean Edell: He underwent laparoscopic surgery to remove his tumor. Richard Whelan: We can do just as radical an operation laparoscopically, as we can do open. Dr. Dean Edell: In fact, a seven-year study of colon cancer patients published in the New England Journal of Medicine found no difference in survival or recurrence when comparing laparoscopic and open surgery. Richard Whelan: There was no difference in the number of lymph nodes, that were gotten out and the size of the specimen, and the ability to put the bowel together afterwards was also not affected. Robert Feinstein: Within one week of having the surgery, I was well enough that I was able to walk almost two miles. Dr. Dean Edell: And for cancer patients, quicker recovery from surgery means starting chemotherapy sooner. Robert Feinstein: This is a piece of cake, the chemotherapy is something else. Jay Redan: So, we can start the treatment sooner, you are going to kill off any microscopic tumor cells that maybe around. Dr. Dean Edell: Of course, finding the right surgeon is important. Richard Whelan: Laparoscopic operation is harder to do, it takes more time. Male Speaker: I was getting like a bend like pain around my head. Dr. Dean Edell: Some of the newest technological advances are also giving surgeons better ways to take care of other very complicated problems. Male Speaker: It's a pretty rare, rare thing. Dr. Dean Edell: As a Navy flyer, Paul Santos is used to mental and physical challenge but none like the medical hurdle he recently faced. Paul Santos: My flight doctor said, I basically you have a cyst in your head, and you can't fly. Dr. Dean Edell: Paul had a painful cyst on his brain. Paul Santos: It was grown by my optic nerve and it was also affecting my vision. Dr. Dean Edell: He needed surgery called craniotomy to remove it. Paul Santos: They told me that, while I am 23-years-old, they are going to do the brain surgery. And I am like, Jeez man! Dr. Dean Edell: Only recently, you have doctors been able to use minimally invasive procedures to treat the brain. John Frazee: The real reason for that is that we haven't had the instrumentation to actually make it easy for a surgeon to adapt. Dr. Dean Edell: At UCLA, Dr. John Frazee helped develop a small endoscope which they used to get inside Paul's head. Paul Santos: That's how we would've done it in the old days. Now you have the brain through this huge hole here, and you have