Single Incision Laparoscopic Surgery (SILS) Effective for Treatment of Colon Diseases

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SILS is an evolving type of minimally invasive surgery for colorectal patients using a single incision. A group of Houston surgeons have published their findings for the scarless incision surgery.

A single incision surgical technique for colorectal surgery that is providing patients with a scarless incision and reduced complications was presented by a group of Houston surgeons at the American Society of Colon and Rectal Surgeons Annual Meeting in Minnesota in May.

Surgeons at Colorectal Surgical Associates (CSA) in Houston, Texas are using single-incision laparoscopic surgery (SILS) and have published the results of colorectal surgeries they performed in the online edition of Surgical Endoscopy, April 5, 2010. Drs. Eric Haas and T. Bartley Pickron of CSA are the lead authors of the study which is the largest series of patients successfully treated with this minimally invasive technique.

"Single incision laparoscopic surgery is an innovative technique in the field of colorectal surgery," according to Dr. Haas, board certified colorectal surgeon and program director of minimally invasive colon and rectal surgery at the University of Texas Medical School at Houston. "Compared to other minimally invasive techniques, SILS only requires one incision which is hidden in the natural folds of the navel."

The surgeons report in the article that SILS is a rapidly evolving technique in the field of minimally invasive surgery. Patient benefits in this early study include a "scarless" incision, reduced pain, faster return to normal activities and lower infection rate. "Patients are leaving the hospital earlier and recovering far sooner than those who undergo traditional open colon surgery," says Dr. Pickron.

"This is the largest published series of SILS procedures for removal of a portion of the colon," according to Dr. Haas. "SILS has proven to be effective and safe for both benign and malignant diseases." In fact, for those with colon cancer, this seems to be even more important as it results in less trauma to the tissue and removal of the associated lymph nodes where the cancer can spread."

Dr. Haas and his partners, Drs. T. Bartley Pickron, Anne Le and Ali Mahmood perform nearly all of their procedures using a minimally invasive laparoscopic technique. Only a few centers in the United States and abroad are initiating programs in laparoscopic single incision surgery specifically for colon surgery.

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