Surgery

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Liver cancer screening: Overcoming a silent killer

February 17, 2016

Preventive care is a crucial aspect of chronic liver disease management, and liver cancer screening is a top priority. Liver cancer (hepatocellular carcinoma) is the third-leading cause of cancer-related deaths worldwide, and its incidence is expected to rise in the United States in coming years. So who should be screened for liver cancer, how do we make the diagnosis and what treatment options are available?

5 fast facts about ulcerative colitis

February 10, 2016

In January, the world mourned the loss of Glenn Frey, founding member of the Eagles. He reportedly battled two autoimmune diseases, rheumatoid arthritis and ulcerative colitis, for years before his death. Questions since have swirled in the media about these diseases. Here are five fast facts about ulcerative colitis from specialist Karlee Ausk, M.D.

HPV-induced "throat cancer" and the difficult questions

January 27, 2016

Head and neck cancers commonly refer to malignant tumors originating in the tongue and throat region. Traditionally, those cancers were caused by long-term tobacco use and high alcohol consumption. But in the past three decades, more and more of these cancers have a new cause.

Bladder drips and gullywashers improve after anti-incontinence surgery

September 02, 2015
When a woman has bothersome bladder leakage and is seeking to get her bladder back under her control, the first thing her provider will diagnose is whether the leakage is stress-type incontinence ("drips" small amount of urine with cough, sneeze, exercise), or urge-type incontinence (loses large volume of urine, "gullywashers" soaking pads and clothing). Stress-type drip patterns are more common, but urge incontinence can put a huge dent in your quality of life and can be terribly bothersome. Urge incontinence is also called overactive bladder, and may involve a spectrum of symptoms with urinary frequency, urgency, and leakage. Many women have a combination of symptoms and both types of leakage patterns, i.e. mixed-incontinence, and this situation can pose a dilemma to providers since the treatments for stress or urge incontinence are different - which to treat first?

Ductal carcinoma in situ - the need for individualized treatment planning

August 21, 2015
On August 20, 2015, the New York Times published an article with the provocative title, “Doubt is Raised Over Value of Surgery for Breast Lesion at Earliest Stage.” In it they reference a study by Narod reported in JAMA Oncology that looked at breast cancer death after a DCIS diagnosis. 

But, the questions addressed by the article were different than the questions generated by the research.

How to help kids prepare for surgery

August 17, 2015
Being scheduled for a surgical or sedated procedure can be a nerve wracking experience for children and their families. Knowing what to expect when you visit the hospital can help relieve many common fears and concerns. At Swedish, Child Life Specialists help children and families cope with the hospital process. Child Life Specialists are available to help educate and prepare children and families prior to surgery.

The pre-operative tour is a great place to start.

Volunteer trip to Kenya for spine surgeries

February 12, 2015

I'm in Nairobi, Kenya in the hopes of performing 20 much needed spine deformity surgeries.  While in Kenya we will be working along side the Kenyatta National Hospital surgeons to develop a sustainable spine treatment program through hands on training and education.

We'll be working with the National Spinal Injury Hospital (NSIH), which as the name suggests is a hospital who offers medical treatments to patients with spine injuries. NSIH is a national referral facility with a capacity of 32 beds. For this reason, it cannot accommodate more than 30 patients at any one time; 2 beds are to be spared for medical procedures. Statistics indicates that there are over 200 people waiting for treatment at any one single time.

Here's...

Getting help when you don't know what to do about your symptoms

January 23, 2015

When you’re not feeling well, sometimes it’s hard to know where to turn. As the Nurse Navigator with Swedish Digestive Health Network, I get these calls every day.  Below are a few tips to help you advocate for yourself if you are not feeling well. (Remember to first and foremost get established with a primary care doctor before you become ill!)

1. If you’re not feeling well:

When is Eyelid Surgery Medically Necessary?

December 19, 2014
Eyelid surgery (frequently referred to as blepharoplasty) is a very common procedure performed for drooping upper eyelids. While the surgery is often performed in order to restore a more youthful appearance, there are many situations in which eyelid surgery is medically necessary to improve vision or function.

Swedish surgeon Lisa Brown named inaugural intuitive fellow

August 04, 2014

SUNNYVALE, Calif. — July 24, 2014 — Intuitive Surgical (NASDAQ: ISRG) today announced the launch of the first annual Intuitive Surgical Robotics Fellowship Course through the American Association for Thoracic Surgery’s (AATS) Graham Foundation. The course, which began in late July, is designed to offer an introductory training course in robotics to eight North American general thoracic surgery fellows and their attending surgeons. General thoracic surgeons specialize in procedures performed in the chest, such as surgery for lung cancer.

Among the first annual class members is Swedish Surgeon and Thoracic Surgery Fellow Lisa Brown, M.D.

The eight fellows will have the opportunity to spend two days at Intuitive Surgical's Atlanta facility to receive advanced training on Intuitive Surgical's da Vinci® Surgical System. Course Director Robert Cerfolio, MD, leading robotic surgery expert and Chief of the Section of Thoracic Surgery at the University of Alabama, will provide clinical instruction. This year’s fellowship recipients come from Duke University, East Carolina University, Mayo Clinic, New York University, Swedish Medical Center, University of Kentucky, University of Southern California and University of Toronto.