If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with cancer, you will have many important decisions to make. However, there is one very important thing you won't have to worry about—where you can find the best possible treatment for your condition. That's because the best in today's cancer care is available, close to home, at Good Samaritan Hospital Medical Center.
Surgery for Cancer Patients
At Good Samaritan, board certified surgeons provide diagnosis and treatment for a wide variety of cancers. Major surgical operations are performed on a daily basis, using state-of-the-art techniques in a compassionate setting. Cancers of the breast, lung, gastrointestinal tract, head and neck, as well as soft tissue and gynecological malignancies, are all treated at the medical center. Some newer techniques are described below.
A minimally invasive trend in surgery for early-stage breast cancer is offered at Good Samaritan. This procedure, lumpectomy (wide excision), with or without removal of the lymph nodes, is often followed by radiation treatment. The advantage of this conservative treatment is that a woman does not have to deal with the psychological and physical impact of removing the entire breast. Also, the recovery is much quicker after this smaller operation. When faced with a diagnosis of early breast cancer, a lumpectomy is one of the many options. In those situations where more extensive procedures are needed, excellent oncoplastic and reconstructive procedures are available.
The latest focus in surgery for breast cancer is to use less invasive procedures for sampling lymph nodes whenever possible. Previously, it was standard procedure to remove all of the lymph nodes in the axilla. Sentinel node biopsies offer patients a less extensive procedure without decreasing the cure rate. To perform a sentinel node biopsy, a radiotracer is injected into the patient, allowing for the identification of the sentinel, or first, lymph nodes. The first nodes that cancer cells would reach after leaving the original cancer site are targeted and removed with this technique. Only those patients whose sentinel nodes indicate the spread of cancer would need to undergo a more extensive removal of the remaining lymph nodes.
Exciting advances in minimally invasive surgical techniques have led to the use of laparoscopic surgery for the treatment of many benign and malignant tumors of the gastrointestinal tract. Surgeons are able to place a camera through a very small incision (less than one half inch) into the abdominal cavity to visualize the site of the tumor. Currently, available techniques allow the physician to remove the tumor using very small incisions. The benefit to the patient is that postoperative pain and discomfort are significantly decreased. In addition, the patients generally are discharged earlier than they would have been using standard techniques. Therefore, recovery is faster.
Thoracic surgeons at Good Samaritan are using the latest surgical and minimally invasive techniques to treat early-stage lung cancer. Some small tumors can be treated using the video assisted thoracic surgical (VATS) technique. This treatment, like other minimally invasive techniques, results in decreased postoperative pain and a shorter hospital stay. For more advanced lung cancers, the use of neoadjuvant chemotherapy improves the chances of survival for patients were previously classified as unresectable. This chemotherapy treatment prior to surgery down-stages tumors, allowing these patients to be candidates for surgical resection. Coordinated treatments by board certified thoracic surgeons, medical oncologists and radiation oncologists provide lung cancer patients with state-of-the-art care.
The hallmark for successfully treating gynecological malignancies is early diagnosis and treatment. This is accomplished by having the patient seek consultation and evaluation by her gynecological specialist on a routine basis. Cancer diagnosis is aided with advanced CT scans, MRIs and ultrasound services, as well as therapy, by the Radiology Department. Gynecological cancer treatment is entrusted to board certified gynecologists, with the help of the consulting staff of both gynecological and medical oncologists.
da Vinci® Surgical System
Good Samaritan is the only hospital on the south shore of Suffolk County to offer da Vinci® robotic surgery, offering the very highest level of patient safety and quality of care for the community. The hospital’s skilled surgeons use da Vinci® to improve clinical outcomes, decrease recovery time and reduce any risks or complications for women. This advanced, minimally invasive technology offers superior results in hysterectomies and other gynecologic surgeries. Patients are able to return to normal activities faster than with conventional surgery. da Vinci® provides excellent patient satisfaction and a proven track record of more than 150,000 hysterectomies annually. It is also the number one surgical treatment option for women diagnosed with gynecological cancer. Through the da Vinci® surgical system, often complex procedures are now performed through just a few tiny incisions and with less pain.
For more information on surgeons trained, call (631) 376-4444. Click here for more information on Good Samaritan’s Women’s Services.
Urologists at Good Samaritan provide diagnosis for all types of genitourinary malignancies, including prostate, bladder, kidney and testicular cancers. Board certified urologists, skilled in the latest surgical techniques, provide the very best care. Nerve-sparing radical prostatectomy for prostate cancer and neobladder creation for carcinoma of the bladder are just two of the leading procedures currently performed at the medical center. The latest advances and procedures are employed to minimize the risk of impotence and incontinence while providing patients with the best chance of a cure. Prostate cancer patients also have another alternative. Brachytherapy (radiation) allows the urologist to work in close concert with the radiation oncologist in order to provide these patients with another option, giving them the most complete care possible to treat their cancer.
Thyroid surgery is used to treat thyroid nodules, thyroid cancer, and hyperthyroidism. During this procedure, part or all of the thyroid gland is removed. The thyroid gland is a butterfly-shaped gland located at the front of the neck.
For further information, call (631) 376-4444.
Breast Health Services
Diagnostic Imaging Services (Radiology)
Women's Imaging Center
Radiation Oncology Department