A remarkable surgery, the first of its kind in Oakville, was recently performed at Oakville Trafalgar Memorial Hospital (OTMH) in April.
A 78-year-old patient was diagnosed with a Gastrointestinal Stromal Tumor (GIST) of the stomach located at the junction with the esophagus. This is a very difficult area to treat surgically. GISTs tend to grow, have intermediate benign behaviour and for these reasons they have to be surgically resected.
The patient was soon referred to Dr. Federico Pampaloni, a general surgeon at OTMH with a specialty in minimally invasive surgery and an assistant clinical Professor with the Department of Surgery at McMaster University.
To avoid an extensive open surgery that could have been challenging and risky for the older patient, Dr. Pampaloni partnered with two other minimally invasive trained surgeons Dr. Dennis Hong and Dr. Ian Choy to perform the surgery with a minimally invasive laparoscopic approach, but by going through the stomach, a trans-gastric approach. Essentially in this procedure, the surgeons remove the tumor through the stomach, rather than from outside of it.
By using cutting-edge technology available at OTMH, the surgeons performed the surgery in less than two hours. This innovative procedure to resect tumors located in difficult areas such as the junction of the esophagus is safer for patients. It also reduces the operative time, complications, and recovery time.
“We are working together, with the support of the Chief of Surgery, Dr. Duncan Rozario, to rapidly evolve minimal invasive surgery in Oakville. With Dr. Ian Choy we will be leading the development of advanced and innovative minimally invasive techniques at OTMH,” Dr. Pampaloni explained, adding that, “This would not have been possible without the incredible team of OR nurses and anesthesiologists at OTMH.”
Minimally invasive surgery is the future of surgery and fortunately, OTMH patients will have access to these advanced techniques close to home.
Thanks to donor support, the patient was treated by the best possible hands using state of the art equipment, and was able to return home two days after the surgery.