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Surgical oncology is a cancer care field that subjects on using surgery to diagnose, stage and treat cancer. Surgical oncologists doctors may also have to perform palliative surgeries to help control pain, increase the patient’s comfort level, manage cancer-related symptoms and side effects. Whether a patient is eligible for surgery depends on factors such as the type, size, location, grade and stage of the tumor, as well as the patient’s health issues, including age, physical fitness and other medical conditions. Many patients may have cancer surgery combined with other treatments, such as chemotherapy, radiation therapy or hormone therapy. Depending on the type of cancer, the size of the tumor, its location, surgery can be performed using minimally invasive techniques. Other conditions may sometimes require open surgeries, which are more likely to spread cancer and have larger incisions. A surgical oncologist may work with other doctors and his professional team to help reduce pain and other side effects.

Types Of Oncologists

The field of oncology has three major areas: medical, surgical, and radiation.

  • Medical oncologist: Treats cancer by using chemotherapy or other medications, such as targeted therapy or immunotherapy.
  • Surgical oncologist:  Diagonises and removes the tumor and nearby tissue during surgery. Doctors also performs certain types of biopsies to help diagnose cancer.
  • Radiation oncologist:  Treating cancer by using radiation therapy.

Other types of oncologists include:

  • gynecologic oncologist provides treatment for gynecologic cancers, such as uterine, ovarian, and cervical cancers.
  • pediatric oncologist treats cancer in children. This includes certain brain tumors, leukemia, osteosarcoma, and Ewing’s sarcoma. Cancers that occur in children, sometimes also occur in adults.
  • A hematologist-oncologist diagnosis and treats blood cancers, such as leukemia, lymphoma, and myeloma

Surgery Types:

Preventive surgery: It is also called as prophylactic surgery, preventive surgery is intended to keep cancer from occurring. For example, many colorectal cancers are prevented when doctors (gastroenterologists or colorectal surgeons) remove precancerous polyps during screening colonoscopies.

Diagnostic surgery: It is a method of obtaining a tissue sample (biopsy) to help doctors detect or confirm the presence of cancer. Surgical biopsy technique is an incisional biopsy, in which a small area is cut out, and excisional biopsy, in which an entire mass is removed.

Staging surgery: It is the process of confirming during surgery how much cancer is present and where it is spread in the body. Mostly staging is done during surgery that is already happening to remove a tumor. If the tumor is widely spread to be removed, the surgeon will only take a sample for biopsy.

Treatment or curative surgery: Cancers that form a solid mass surgery is typically essential to curing the disease, and for some cancers, it may be the only treatment that’s needed.

Reconstructive surgery: Reconstructive surgery recreates and restores again the parts of the body after cancer treatment. Common reconstructive surgeries include breast reconstruction for women who have had a lumpectomy or mastectomy for breast cancer.

Palliative surgery: Palliative surgery is intended to improve the quality of life by easing pain and other complications caused by advanced cancer. It does not treat or cure cancer but may provide relief in certain situations.

Cancer care teams also include a variety of Cancer specialists:

  • pathologist reads laboratory tests which include checking cells, tissues, and organs to diagnose disease
  • A diagnostic radiologist conducts imaging tests to diagnose the disease which includes x-rays or ultrasound tests.
  • An oncology nurse
  • An oncology social worker

Dr. Tushar Mule is Cancer Specialist in Aurangabad, also Specialist in Head and Neck, Lung, Breast, Prostate, Bone Gastrointestinal, Genitourinary & Hematolymphoid Cancer.

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