Surgical Oncology

For many types of cancer, surgery is often the optimal first treatment, especially for early stage cancers or tumors that are contained to one area. It may also be used in conjunction with radiation therapy and/or infusion therapy as part of a personalized treatment plan.  

CHI Saint Joseph Health is home to some of the most skilled cancer surgeons in the region—many who are specially trained in minimally invasive techniques and technology to treat cancer. Your surgeon will work closely with your cancer care team and you to find the right procedure for your unique needs and provide ongoing follow-up care.

For more information about our cancer surgical services, or to schedule a consultation, contact a cancer center near you or find a cancer specialist anytime online.

Advanced Surgical Options 

In addition to performing traditional cancer procedures, CHI Saint Joseph Health surgeons specialize in newer, cutting-edge options that can improve patient outcomes and quality of life. Just some of these specialties include:

  • da Vinci robotic surgery: This highly sophisticated technology allows our surgeons to perform a variety of cancer surgeries with better precision and less incision. Common robotic procedures we perform include cystectomy (bladder cancer), prostatectomy (prostate cancer), colectomy (colorectal cancer), lung wedge resection (lung cancer) and partial nephrectomy (kidney cancer). For patients, that often means significantly less pain and scarring, fewer complications and faster recovery.
  • Video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS): The most common procedure for lung cancer is called a lobectomy, which removes sections of the lung. Traditional open lobectomy involves large incisions to open the chest wall. Because VATS only uses a few small incisions, patients can often enjoy a smoother and quicker recovery.

Breast Cancer Surgical Specialists

Surgery is the most common treatment for early breast cancer. Depending on the type and stage of the tumor, our surgeons offer a full range of options to meet the needs of women battling the disease.

  • Lumpectomy: Removal of the tumor and some surrounding tissues.
  • Total mastectomy: Removal of the entire affected breast, but no lymph nodes or muscle.
  • Modified radical mastectomy: Removal of the affected breast as well as any lymph nodes under the arm where the cancer has spread.
  • Skin/nipple sparing mastectomy: Breast tissue is removed, but the nipple and areola stay intact. The breast's appearance—and potentially nerve function—remains more natural after surgery.
  • Breast reconstruction: One of our skilled plastic surgeons can restore the breast mounds using your own tissue or from other areas of the body, either at the same time or following a mastectomy. 

Personalized Rehabilitation

Following surgery, our cancer rehabilitation program can help ensure a smooth healing process. We offer specialized services to meet your needs, including lymphedema therapy. Our licensed therapists can help manage the painful swelling that sometimes occurs when lymph nodes are removed during cancer surgery.

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