Cancer, a devastating disease that affects millions of people worldwide, requires specialized medical attention and advanced treatment options. In recent years, Turkey has emerged as a leading destination for advanced surgical oncology, providing patients with cutting-edge techniques, highly skilled surgeons, and state-of-the-art facilities.
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Surgical oncology: An overview
Surgical oncology is a specialized branch of oncology dedicated to the surgical treatment of various types of cancer. It adopts a multidisciplinary approach, fostering close collaboration between surgical oncologists and other healthcare professionals such as medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, and pathologists. This collaboration aims to provide comprehensive care for cancer patients.
The primary objective of surgical oncology is to remove cancerous tumors from the body through surgical procedures. The goal is not only to eliminate the cancer, but also to prevent it from spreading to other parts of the body.
Our oncology surgeons in Turkey have extensive training and expertise in :
- Performing complex surgical procedures.
- Assessing the stage of the cancer.
- Determining the most appropriate therapeutic approach.
- Ensuring the best possible outcome for patients.
Types of oncologic surgery
The main types of oncologic surgery include:
- Curative surgery: Curative surgery aims to completely remove the tumor and all surrounding cancerous tissue. It is the most effective cancer treatment. However, it is not always possible, depending on the stage of the cancer and the location of the tumor.
- Palliative surgery: Palliative surgery aims to relieve symptoms of cancer, such as pain, pressure, or constipation. It may be used to remove part or all of a tumor or to implant devices such as stents or catheters to improve the function of an organ or structure.
- Tumor reduction surgery: Aimed at reducing the size of a tumor to make it more likely to respond to other treatments, such as chemotherapy or radiotherapy.
- Prophylactic surgery: Preventive surgery that aims to remove a healthy or at least cancer-free organ to eliminate the risk of cancer.
- Reconstructive surgery: It aims to rebuild a structure or organ damaged by cancer. It may be used to replace an organ or structure that has been removed or to repair damage caused by radiation or chemotherapy.
Surgical approaches in oncology include several methods:
- Open surgery: The traditional method, open surgery, requires an incision to access the tumor.
- Endoscopic surgery: Involves the use of fine surgical instruments that are inserted into the body through small incisions in the skin. It is often less invasive than open surgery and allows for a quicker recovery.
- Robotic surgery (robot-assisted): This involves the use of a surgical robot controlled by the surgeon from a remote console. Robotic surgery offers greater precision and control, which can be useful for complex procedures.
Choosing surgical oncology in Turkey
The choice of oncological surgery in Turkey depends on many factors, including the type of cancer, the stage of the cancer, the patient's overall health, and personal preferences.
Oncological surgery is an important treatment for many types of cancer. It can help to
- Cure the cancer.
- Relieve symptoms.
- Improve the patient's quality of life.
How does surgical oncology differ from medical oncology?
It's crucial to distinguish between surgical oncology and medical oncology. While surgical oncologists use surgical interventions to treat cancer, medical oncologists focus on medical therapies such as chemotherapy, targeted therapy, immunotherapy, and hormone therapy.
Surgical oncology and medical oncology are both integral parts of a multidisciplinary approach to cancer treatment. The fundamental distinction lies in the treatment methods employed by each specialty.
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Firstly, the location of the tumor is of crucial importance, as some tumors can be found in delicate areas of the body. This makes surgical removal excessively risky due to the potential damage to vital structures. In addition, the size and extent of the tumor are also major considerations. Consequently, large or widespread tumors can make complete removal difficult, if not virtually impossible. In some situations, the tumor may also have spread to other areas of the body, making surgery less effective in achieving a cure.
In general, oncologic surgery requires general anesthesia. This involves the administration of intravenous drugs and inhaled gases to place the patient in a deep state of sleep, ensuring complete unconsciousness throughout the procedure. In addition, regional anesthesia techniques, such as epidurals or nerve blocks, may be used to target and relieve postoperative pain.
No, surgery for cancer does not spread the disease. Surgery is a common treatment for cancer, and it is very effective at removing cancerous tumors. In fact, surgery is sometimes the only cancer treatment.
However, there is a small risk that cancer cells may be released into the bloodstream during surgery. These cells can then move to other parts of the body and start new tumors. This is called metastasis.
The risk of metastasis is very low and is most likely to occur in cancers that are already advanced at the time of surgery.