Hepatobiliary surgery encompasses surgery of the liver, bile ducts, gallbladder, and pancreas. Hepatobiliary surgeons work in close conjunction with gastroenterologists, radiologists, and oncologists in evaluation and treatment of surgical maladies within this field. Surgical diseases of the gallbladder include gallstones (cholelithiasis), inflammation (cholecystitis), or gallbladder cancer. Pancreatic masses, benign or malignant, as well as chronic inflammation of the pancreas (pancreatitis) along with its varying complications all require surgical treatment. Bile duct surgery is required for cancer, injury, or strictures and often mandates resection or bypass of the affected segment. Liver surgery is performed for benign symptomatic or premalignant lesions as well as malignant tumors, which are either primary or metastatic in origin.
Hepatobiliary surgeonsare adept in varying techniques of treatment for the above-described diseases. Laparoscopy or minimally invasive surgery is commonly used for gallbladder surgery and has been more recently used in treatment of liver lesions. Previously, cancerous lesions of the liver were slated for resection of a portion of the liver. Newer techniques including chemoembolization and radiofrequency ablation have diversified the arsenal in treating such lesions allowing for sparing of liver function and tissue.
Laparoscopy has played a significant role in advancing these newer modalities in liver surgery. Comprehensive care with radiologists ensures successful treatment plans and outcomes in these patients.