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Surgery is one of the oldest forms of treatment for cancer and offers the greatest chance for diagnosis and cure for many types of cancer. Advances in surgical techniques and equipment have allowed surgeons to successfully operate on a growing number of cancer patients than ever before. Most people with cancer will have some type of surgical procedure to prevent, detect, stage, cure, debulk, provide pain relief, support other treatments or reconstruct tissues.
General Surgery Treatment Modalities:
Sentinel Node Biopsy
Sentinel node biopsy is a procedure used to determine whether cancer has spread beyond the primary site to the closest lymph node. The minimally invasive procedure can possibly prevent the more extensive surgery of removing all lymph nodes. Sentinel Node Biopsy is used in melanoma, skin, breast and colon cancer, and other cancers.
Head and Neck
Surgical management for head and neck cancer requires an extensive knowledge of the particular cancer's origin, behavior and responses to therapy. These procedures tend to be very intricate and delicate. Surgery is a very curative treatment option when used in the early stages of the disease and allows for relatively fast recovery times. Surgery is often followed up with radiation. Surgery can also lead to improved quality of life for advanced cancers when all other therapies have failed.
Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery
An important, but often overlooked facet of cancer care is the physical appearance or cosmetic concerns of the patient. IU Health Arnett Physicians have plastic and reconstructive specialists to provide options for patients with cancer undergoing surgery.
Cryosurgery (also called cryotherapy)
The procedure uses extreme cold to destroy cancer cells. For internal tumors, liquid nitrogen is circulated through an instrument called a cryoprobe or needle, which is placed in contact with the tumor. To guide the cryoprobe and to monitor the freezing of cells, the surgeon uses ultrasound to spare nearby healthy tissue. Cryosurgery is traditionally used to treat early stage skin cancers.