On 21st August, after 11 hours of surgery, the multi-disciplinary team of Head and Neck surgeons at KUTRRH put their scalpels down and gave a sigh of relief. The team had addressed a case of aggressive cancer on the right side of the face and left scalp of a patient.
The team included Dr. Getachew, the Head and Neck Surgeon at KUTRRH, and Dr. Macharia an ENT Surgeon both of whom handled the wide excision, radical parotidectomy, and radical neck dissection.
Dr Kezegule the Maxillofacial surgeon performed the zygomatic bone excision and plate reconstruction and Dr Ogallo, the Plastic Surgeon, swooped in to close the wound via a pectoralis major flap. The cutting time was exactly 8.30 am and the teamwork from the nursing and anaesthesia team was no doubt commendable.
Treatment of Cancer With Surgery
Many types of cancer are treated with surgery. Surgery works best for solid tumors that are contained in one area. It is a local treatment, meaning that it treats only the part that has cancer.
It is not used for leukemia (a type of blood cancer) or for cancers that have spread.
Depending on the type of cancer and how advanced it is, surgery can be used to:
- Remove the entire tumor: Surgery removes cancer that is contained in one area.
- Debulk a tumor: Surgery removes some, but not all, of an infected tumor. Debulking is used when removing an entire tumor that might damage an organ or the body. Removing part of a tumor can help other treatments work better.
- Ease cancer symptoms: Surgery is used to remove tumors that are causing pain or pressure.
In many cases, surgery offers the best chance of getting rid of the disease, especially if it hasn’t spread to other parts of the body. The KUTRRH team who conducted the surgery proved that success is a team sport.