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Gastrointestinal Surgery News

Robots Stake Their Claim in the Operating Room

Posted 12 hours ago by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, May 4, 2016 – A surgical robot outperformed human surgeons in stitching the small intestines of pigs back together, researchers report. Without any direct human interaction, the Smart Tissue Autonomous Robot (STAR) reconnected the intestines with sutures that proved more accurate, evenly spaced and durable than those created by human hands, the machine's developers said. The test shows it's possible to create a smart robot that will be able to perform an entire surgical procedure on its own, much as robot technology is now used to assemble complex machinery or safely steer airplanes and automobiles, said senior researcher Dr. Peter C.W. Kim. "Our hypothesis is you should be able to eventually program the entire surgical procedure beginning-to-end, intelligently and autonomously," said Kim, who is a pediatric surgeon and vice president of the Sheikh Zayed Institute for ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Gastrointestinal Surgery

How Important Is Surgeon's Skill for Weight-Loss Surgery Outcomes?

Posted 13 Apr 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, April 13, 2016 – A surgeon's skill level does not seem to have a big impact on long-term outcomes for weight-loss surgery patients, a new study suggests. However, one weight-loss surgeon disagreed with the study's conclusion. Prior research had found an association between surgical skill level and short-term outcomes after a type of weight-loss surgery called laparoscopic gastric bypass. But, the long-term impact was unknown. The new study was led by Dr. Christopher Scally, of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, and included more than 3,600 patients. The patients underwent weight-loss surgery performed by one of 20 different surgeons. Each surgeon's individual skill level was assessed by experts who viewed videos of the surgeons as they performed weight-loss operations. Surgeons ranked in both the highest and lowest levels had been practicing an average of 11 years. One ... Read more

Related support groups: Obesity, Weight Loss, Gastric Bypass Surgery, Gastrointestinal Surgery

Weight-Loss Surgery Gets People Moving, Study Shows

Posted 5 Apr 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, April 5, 2016 – Weight-loss surgery seems to help ease joint pain and improve mobility in the long run, new research suggests. "Previous studies have reported improvement in pain and function [after weight-loss surgery]," said study author Wendy King, an associate professor of epidemiology at the University of Pittsburgh. However, most of those studies only followed people for a year after their procedure, she added. "We found through three years of follow-up that, depending on the measure, 50 to 75 percent of adults with severe obesity who had bariatric [weight-loss] surgery experienced clinically significant improvements in pain, physical functioning and walking time," she said. "Our findings reinforce the findings of shorter-term studies." King's team evaluated more than 2,200 men and women who had weight-loss surgery at one of 10 hospitals across the United States. The ... Read more

Related support groups: Obesity, Surgery, Weight Loss, Gastric Bypass Surgery, Gastrointestinal Surgery

Non-Surgical Procedure May Be New Weight-Loss Tool

Posted 4 Apr 2016 by Drugs.com

SUNDAY, April 3, 2016 – A procedure long used to halt stomach bleeding may offer another way to treat severe obesity, a preliminary study suggests. The study, of seven severely obese adults, found that the minimally invasive procedure caused no serious complications. It also spurred some weight loss: Patients lost 13 percent of their excess weight, on average, over the next six months. Experts stressed that the procedure – bariatric artery embolization – is not approved for weight loss, and remains in clinical trials. It's not clear whether or how it could fit in with the current treatments for severe obesity. Those treatments include invasive procedures such as gastric bypass surgery, which alters the digestive tract to limit how much food a person can eat and the body's absorption of calories. "Those procedures are highly effective, but they also have risks," said Dr. Clifford ... Read more

Related support groups: Obesity, Surgery, Weight Loss, Gastric Bypass Surgery, Gastrointestinal Surgery

Could a Low-Risk Surgery Help Your Chronic Heartburn?

Posted 30 Mar 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, March 29, 2016 – A minimally invasive surgery to treat chronic heartburn is safer than generally believed, and could be a desirable alternative to long-term use of acid reflux medications, new research indicates. Scientists found the death rate following so-called laparoscopic fundoplication surgery for gastroesophageal reflux disease, or GERD, was far lower than the 1 percent often quoted. Experts contended the surgery might be underutilized, especially in light of increasing safety concerns about acid reflux drugs. "One of the main arguments against surgery when choosing between [drug] and surgical treatment for severe GERD is the risk of mortality," said study author Dr. John Maret-Ouda. He is a physician and doctoral student in upper gastrointestinal surgery at the Karolinska Institute in Sweden. But, "this study found only one death associated with [this surgery] among ... Read more

Related support groups: GERD, Indigestion, Gastrointestinal Disorders, Endoscopy, Barrett's Esophagus, Duodenitis/Gastritis, Gastric Bypass Surgery, Gastrointestinal Surgery, Erosive Gastritis, Duodenitis/Gastritis with Hemorrhage, Hypersecretory Conditions

New Type of Weight-Loss Surgery May Be Less Risky, Cheaper

Posted 15 Feb 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Feb. 15, 2016 – A new type of weight-loss procedure offers an alternative to traditional bariatric surgery for people who are mildly to moderately obese, researchers report. The procedure is called endoscopic sleeve gastroplasty, and it involves using an endoscope – a flexible tube inserted through the mouth – rather than making an incision in the body. When the endoscope reaches the stomach, the surgeon places sutures in the stomach, making it smaller and changing its shape. A small study found that the procedure resulted in a loss of about 50 percent of excess weight when measured six, nine and 12 months after the procedure. "We're able to go inside the stomach to its connection to the esophagus," said study author Dr. Barham Abu Dayyeh, a gastroenterologist at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. From there, the surgeons use suturing equipment to create a banana-sized ... Read more

Related support groups: Obesity, Surgery, Weight Loss, Gastric Bypass Surgery, Gastrointestinal Surgery

Surgical Safety Checklists May Shorten Hospital Stays, Save Lives

Posted 3 Feb 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 3, 2016 – A surgical safety checklist reduced patients' risk of death over 90 days and shortened their hospital stay, a new study found. The findings suggest that surgical safety checklists can reduce health care costs by reducing the risk of complications or additional surgery to correct problems, said Dr. Matthias Bock, of Bolzano Central Hospital in Italy, and colleagues. The researchers examined outcomes for more than 10,700 surgery patient in the six months before and after a 17-to-24-item surgical safety checklist was introduced at a hospital in Italy. The study did not include heart surgery patients. The death rate within 90 days of surgery was 2.4 percent before and 2.2 percent after the checklist was introduced. The 30-day death rate fell from 1.4 percent to 1.3 percent. Average length of hospital stay was 10.4 days before and 9.6 days after the checklist was ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Orthopedic Surgery, Neurosurgery, Surgical Prophylaxis, Vascular Surgery, Gastrointestinal Surgery, Cardiothoracic Surgery

Weight-Loss Surgery Lowered Risk of Heart Attack, Type 2 Diabetes in Study

Posted 22 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Dec. 22, 2015 – Weight-loss surgery can reduce the risk of heart attack, type 2 diabetes and other obesity-related health problems, a new study says. "Bariatric surgery is safe and produces unrivaled health benefits that are life-changing for patients and cost-saving [for Britain's National Health Service]," said study co-author Rachel Batterham, head of the Bariatric Centre for Weight Management and Metabolic Surgery at University College London Hospital. She is also a professor at the Centre for Obesity Research at University College London in England. "Unfortunately, less than 1 percent of the patients who could benefit from this surgery currently receive surgery. This represents a major missed opportunity in terms of improving health and economic savings. Action is now needed to remedy this situation," she said in a news release from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Diabetes, Type 2, Gastric Bypass Surgery, Cardiovascular Risk Reduction, Gastrointestinal Surgery

Doctors Rally in Support of Fibroid Device Curbed by FDA

Posted 8 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Dec. 8, 2015 – Dozens of gynecologists, cancer doctors and women's health experts are challenging a U.S. Food and Drug Administration warning on a power device used to remove fibroid growths from a woman's uterus. The tool – a laparoscopic power morcellator – grinds up fibroid growths during minimally invasive surgery. The group of experts claim that curbing its use may force patients to undergo riskier, more invasive procedures. The FDA issued a "boxed warning" label on the devices last year. The agency had concluded that in about one out of every 458 cases, the morcellator chews up an undiagnosed cancerous growth and floods the woman's abdomen with cancer cells. But a review group of 46 experts says the FDA got its facts wrong. The likelihood that power morcellation would grind up a cancerous growth is actually much lower, they contend. "The best case scenario would be for ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Hysterectomy, Uterine Leiomyomata / Fibroids, Gastrointestinal Surgery, Genitourinary Surgical and Other Conditions

Weight-Loss Surgery May Bring Long-Term Benefits to Very Obese Teens

Posted 6 Nov 2015 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Nov. 6, 2015 – Weight-loss surgeries, long used by obese adults to drop excess pounds, may provide long-lasting health benefits to very obese teenagers, a new study finds. The study of extremely obese teens found that, three years after either gastric bypass surgery or a procedure called sleeve gastrectomy, the average patient had lost 27 percent of his or her original weight. What's more, many also showed remission of obesity-linked ills such as type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol. "We found significant improvements in weight, cardiometabolic health and weight-related quality of life at three years after the [weight-loss] procedure," wrote a team led by Dr. Thomas Inge, of Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center. His team published the findings online Nov. 6 in the New England Journal of Medicine, to coincide with a planned presentation of the ... Read more

Related support groups: Obesity, Surgery, Weight Loss, Gastric Bypass Surgery, Gastrointestinal Surgery

Weight-Loss Surgery May Trim Health Care Costs

Posted 4 Nov 2015 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 4, 2015 – Weight-loss surgery may save health care dollars down the road, a new study suggests. Researchers report that there was a sharp drop in medical spending by obese patients after they had the so-called "bariatric" procedure. "The main reduction in costs were related to fewer hospital admissions and clinic visits, and a reduction in the use of prescription drugs for diabetes, [high blood pressure] and heart disease," said study co-author Dr. John Morton, chief of bariatric and minimally invasive surgery at Stanford University School of Medicine, in Palo Alto, Calif. "Costs were higher across the board for [obese] patients who did not have bariatric surgery, showing there is an even higher cost to not treating obesity," added Morton, who is also president of the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS). In the study, the researchers compared ... Read more

Related support groups: Obesity, Weight Loss, Gastric Bypass Surgery, Gastrointestinal Surgery

Antibiotics May Not Help After 'Complicated' Appendectomy

Posted 2 Nov 2015 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Nov. 2, 2015 – Antibiotics may not reduce the risk of infections in patients who undergo what's known as a "complicated" appendix removal, a new study finds. "The traditional teaching is that all patients with complicated appendicitis receive post-operative antibiotics to reduce the risk of wound infection or deep organ space infection," study lead author Dennis Kim, of the Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute, explained in an institute news release. But is that advisory warranted? To find out, Kim's team tracked five-year outcomes for 410 patients. All of the patients had complicated appendectomies, meaning that their appendix was found to be perforated or gangrenous. About two-thirds of the patients received antibiotics after surgery. Those who received antibiotics had no fewer infections, Kim's team said, and they stayed in hospital an average of one day longer than ... Read more

Related support groups: Amoxicillin, Doxycycline, Cephalexin, Bactrim, Azithromycin, Cipro, Ciprofloxacin, Levaquin, Zithromax, Keflex, Sulfamethoxazole, Erythromycin, Minocycline, Clarithromycin, Levofloxacin, Bactrim DS, Cefdinir, Vancomycin, Tetracycline, Avelox

Surgery May Raise Survival With Advanced Melanoma: Study

Posted 8 Oct 2015 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Oct. 8, 2015 – New research suggests that for patients with melanoma that has spread to the abdomen, surgical removal of the tumor can extend survival. The study was led by Dr. Gary Deutsch, now a surgical oncologist at North Shore-LIJ Health System in Great Neck, N.Y. His team tracked outcomes for 1,600 patients, treated at some point between 1969 and 2014. According to the study, nearly one in four patients had surgery to remove the mass from their abdomen. Patients who underwent the surgery lived more than twice as long as those who received drug treatment alone – 18 months versus seven months, on average, the researchers reported. The study was to be presented Thursday at the annual meeting of the American College of Surgeons (ACS) in Chicago. According to the researchers, in the past, a melanoma that had spread to the liver or another organ in the abdomen was considered ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Melanoma, Melanoma - Metastatic, Gastrointestinal Surgery

Suicide Risk May Rise for Some After Weight-Loss Surgery

Posted 7 Oct 2015 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 7, 2015 – Troubled people who have weight-loss surgery are more likely to attempt suicide following the procedure, a new study suggests. These patients were about 50 percent more likely to try to take their own lives after they lost a lot of weight, while more than nine of 10 suicide attempts involved patients with a history of mental health problems, the Canadian researchers found. "While we are clear and confident about the medical benefits of weight loss, especially through weight-loss surgery, I think we're not as attentive to the potential psychological benefits or harms of it," said Dr. Amir Ghaferi, director of bariatric surgery at the Ann Arbor Veterans Administration Healthcare System in Michigan. Weight-loss surgery can cause a dramatic change in a person's life, and people struggling with mental illness or depression may not be able to cope, said Ghaferi, who ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Obesity, Major Depressive Disorder, Weight Loss, Dysthymia, Seasonal Affective Disorder, Gastric Bypass Surgery, Neurotic Depression, Gastrointestinal Surgery

Less-Invasive Surgery May Not Be Best Option for Rectal Cancer

Posted 6 Oct 2015 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Oct. 6, 2015 – Minimally invasive surgery does not match standard surgery for the treatment of rectal cancer, new research indicates. The finding is based on a pair of studies, one conducted in the United States and Canada, and the other conducted in Australia and New Zealand. "Back in 2000, research concluded that rectal cancer can be treated with a minimally invasive laparoscopic approach that uses small holes in the abdominal wall and guided cameras, and that it gave good outcomes and provided early recovery," explained Dr. James Fleshman, study author of the North American report. Fleshman is chairman of the department of surgery at Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas. "But what we found is that laparoscopic surgery is not equivalent to [standard] open surgery, based on our determination as to whether or not either operation achieved adequate success," Fleshman ... Read more

Related support groups: Colorectal Cancer, Diagnosis and Investigation, Gastrointestinal Surgery

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