State of the Art Surgery

Surgery is usually required for the treatment of gynecologic cancers, precancerous conditions or masses where cancer is suspected or cannot be ruled out. The doctors at Alaska Women’s Cancer Care specialize in many types of surgery for these conditions and offer a wide range of surgical care depending on the nature of your condition.

Complicated non cancerous conditions such as endometriosis or large fibroids are often also often treated by the doctors of Alaska Women’s Cancer Care when your OB/GYN feels special surgical experience may increase the safety of your operation or allow your condition to be managed by a minimally invasive approach.

We perform all types of surgery at Alaska Regional Hospital,  Providence Alaska Medical Center and Alaska Native Medical Center

Open Surgery (Laparotomy)

Laparotomy is required for most women with suspected advanced stage ovarian cancer.  Very large masses often also require open surgery for safe removal. The doctors at Alaska Women’s Cancer Care have experience in complicated abdominal surgery often required for the care of gynecologic cancers. Women with complex pelvic cancers often need one or more surgical procedure during the course of their disease.  These cancers sometimes require small or large bowel resections, bladder surgery, splenectomy and other complex upper abdominal procedures and the doctors at Alaska Women’s Cancer Care perform these procedures often.

Minimally Invasive Surgeries (Laparoscopy or Robotic Surgery)

Minimally invasive surgery is performed through small incisions on the abdomen using traditional laparoscopic hand held instruments or the assistance of the da Vinci robotic platform.   The robotic platform allows for more complicated movements of the surgical instruments and is usually used for minimally invasive cancer cases.  All of the doctors at Alaska Women’s Cancer Care are certified in the daVinci surgical system and are the highest volume robotic surgeons in Alaska.  For more information, visit robotic surgery.

Sentinel Lymph Node Procedures

Sentinel lymph node biopsy techniques allow some patients with gynecologic cancers to avoid a complete lymph node dissection at the time of initial surgery. This technique is often used in the evaluation of vulvar, cervical and endometrial cancers.

Fertility Preservation Surgical Options

For some women with early cervical cancers, a radical trachelectomy (removal of the cervix only) may be an option, where the uterus can be left in and fertility preserved.  Fertility preservation may also be possible for women with other types of gynecologic cancers. Ask your doctor at Alaska Women’s Cancer Care if you have questions about fertility preservation in your case.

Pelvic Exenteration for Recurrent Gynecologic Cancers

Certain women with recurrent cervical and vulvar cancer may have a complex aggressive surgical procedure offered for their treatment. This procedure may involve removal of the bladder, rectum and vagina with reconstructive surgery.