Whether you have cysts, lesions, or tumors related to your pancreas, the type of pancreatic surgery that you will need will depend on where they are located. After a thorough analyst of your individual situation, your Glendora General Surgeon will determine the method of operation, open or laparoscopic, and the type of surgery, Distal Pancreatectomy, Total Pancreatectomy, or Whipple, which will best fit your needs.
General Operation Information
Pancreatic surgery is a lengthy and complicated process, generally lasting between 4 to 8 hours for completion. In addition to removing infected areas, the surgeon will need to reconfigure and rejoin the remaining organs and tissues so that the body will be able to perform in a normal manner. It is an in-hospital procedure and will require that you remain in the hospital for several days, generally 3 to 10 days, before being allowed to go home. Again, depending on the type of surgery performed, recovery may take several weeks or several months.
Open Surgery means that there will be one large incision made in the abdomen so that the surgeon will have full access to the pancreas, and the nearby bile duct, spleen, gallbladder, and duodenum, if they are also involved.
Laparoscopic Surgery means that there will be several small incisions made in the abdomen where slender, special medical instruments with camera capabilities will be inserted so that the surgeon can complete the operation with full view of the pancreas and the surrounding organs.
Type of Pancreas Surgery
Distal Pancreatectomy involves the removal of the body or the tail end of the pancreas. In some situations, the spleen may also need to be removed.
Total Pancreatectomy involves the removal of the entire pancreas, several lymph nodes, a portion of the duodenum, the lower area of the stomach, and, depending on the individual case, the spleen. This surgery results in the patient becoming a diabetic. This means the patient will need to take medical supplements and insulin for the rest of their life.
Whipple, or Pancreaticoduodenectomy, involves the removal of the pancreas head, the bile duct, a portion of the duodenum, several lymph nodes, some of the lower stomach, and the gallbladder.