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Barnaby Smith – General, Bariatric and Endoscopic Surgeon

Private Service, General Surgery

Today

6:00 AM to 6:00 PM.

Description

Barnaby Smith is a General, Bariatric and endoscopic surgeon with specialist interest in Bariatric/weight-loss surgery, upper gastrointestinal, melanoma, laparoscopy and hernia repairs. Read more about Barnaby's expertise in these areas here.
 
What is General Surgery?
The role of the general surgeon varies, but in broad terms general surgery can be said to deal with a wide range of conditions within the abdomen, breast, neck, skin and, in many cases, vascular (blood vessel) system.
 
While the name would suggest that the focus of general surgery is to perform operations, often this is not the case. Many patients are referred to surgeons with conditions that do not need surgical procedures, but merely require counselling or medical treatment.
 
Endoscopy
Endoscopy is the process of looking inside body cavities, using a very tiny camera attached to the end of a long, flexible tube (endoscope). Images from the camera are sent to a television monitor so that the doctor can direct the movement of the endoscope. It is also possible to pass different instruments through the endoscope to allow small samples or growths to be removed.

Endoscopy allows a doctor to make a diagnosis either by seeing directly what is causing the problem or by taking a small tissue sample for examination under a microscope (biopsy).

Endoscopy can also be used as a treatment e.g. for removal of swallowed objects in the oesophagus (food pipe), healing of lesions etc.

Laparoscopic surgery
Laparoscopic (or keyhole) surgical procedures are performed through several small cuts (incisions) usually only 5-10mm long, rather than through one large incision.

A long, narrow surgical telescope (laparoscope) that has a tiny camera and light source attached, is inserted through one of the incisions so that the surgeon can view the inside of the body on a TV monitor.

The surgeon then passes specially designed surgical instruments through the other incisions and carries out the procedure using the TV monitor to guide the instruments.

Laparoscopic surgery is usually associated with less blood loss during surgery and less pain and scarring following surgery. In most cases, time spent in hospital is less and overall recovery time from the operation is less than with conventional open surgery.

Consultants

Referral Expectations

When you come to your appointment, your surgeon will ask questions about your illness and examine you to try to determine or confirm the diagnosis. This process may also require a number of tests (e.g. blood tests, x-rays, scans etc). Sometimes this can all be done during one visit, but for some conditions this will take several follow-up appointments. Occasionally some tests are arranged even before your appointment to try to speed up the process.
 
Once a diagnosis has been made, your surgeon will discuss treatment with you. In some instances this will mean surgery, while other cases can be managed with medication and advice. If surgery is advised, the steps involved in the surgical process and the likely outcome are usually discussed with you at this time.

Charges

Barnaby is a Southern Cross Affiliated Provider for a range of procedures under the following categories :

  • General Surgery (inguinal and umbilical hernia repairs)
  • Anti-reflux surgery
  • Laparoscopic cholecystectomy
  • Skin
  • Varicose Veins

Hours

6:00 AM to 6:00 PM.

Mon – Fri 6:00 AM – 6:00 PM

Procedures / Treatments

Bariatrics

Bariatric surgery is performed for the lifestyle and health benefits of weight loss. Sleeve gastrectomy and Gastric bypass surgery can be offered to suitable patients after consultation. Please refer to website https://barnabysmithsurgical.co.nz/bariatric-surgery/ for more information.

Bariatric surgery is performed for the lifestyle and health benefits of weight loss. Sleeve gastrectomy and Gastric bypass surgery can be offered to suitable patients after consultation. Please refer to website https://barnabysmithsurgical.co.nz/bariatric-surgery/ for more information.

Hernias

A hernia exists where part of the abdominal wall is weakened, and the contents of the abdomen push through to the outside. This is most commonly seen in the groin area but can occur in other places. A hiatus hernia is caused by part of the stomach and lower oesophagus bulging through the diaphragm (a sheet of muscle between the chest and the stomach) into the chest. A hiatus hernia can cause a burning feeling in the upper abdomen and chest (heartburn). Laparoscopic Hernia Repair involves using surgical instruments to push the hernia back into its original position and repairing the weakness in the abdominal wall (or diaphragm in the case of a hiatus hernia).

A hernia exists where part of the abdominal wall is weakened, and the contents of the abdomen push through to the outside. This is most commonly seen in the groin area but can occur in other places. A hiatus hernia is caused by part of the stomach and lower oesophagus bulging through the diaphragm (a sheet of muscle between the chest and the stomach) into the chest. A hiatus hernia can cause a burning feeling in the upper abdomen and chest (heartburn).

Laparoscopic Hernia Repair involves using surgical instruments to push the hernia back into its original position and repairing the weakness in the abdominal wall (or diaphragm in the case of a hiatus hernia).

Gastro-oesophageal Reflux Disease

Gastro-oesophageal Reflux Disease (GORD) is caused by the backflow (reflux) of food and stomach acid into the oesophagus (the tube that connects the mouth to the stomach) from the stomach. This happens when the valve between the stomach and the lower end of the oesophagus is not working properly. The main symptom of GORD is heartburn (a burning feeling in the stomach and chest). Laparoscopic Fundoplication is a surgical procedure for GORD that involves wrapping the top part of the stomach (fundus) around the lower end of the oesophagus. The valve between the stomach and the oesophagus is also replaced or repaired. At most antireflux operations a Hiatal hernia repair is also performed. This is a suture repair of a hernia through the diaphragm. Such a hernia is common and predisposes a patient to GORD.

Gastro-oesophageal Reflux Disease (GORD) is caused by the backflow (reflux) of food and stomach acid into the oesophagus (the tube that connects the mouth to the stomach) from the stomach. This happens when the valve between the stomach and the lower end of the oesophagus is not working properly. The main symptom of GORD is heartburn (a burning feeling in the stomach and chest).

Laparoscopic Fundoplication is a surgical procedure for GORD that involves wrapping the top part of the stomach (fundus) around the lower end of the oesophagus. The valve between the stomach and the oesophagus is also replaced or repaired. 

At most antireflux operations a Hiatal hernia repair is also performed. This is a suture repair of a hernia through the diaphragm. Such a hernia is common and predisposes a patient to GORD.

Skin Disorders Including Melanoma

Skin conditions dealt with by general surgery include lumps, tumours and other lesions of the skin and underlying tissues. These are often fairly simple conditions that can be dealt with by performing minor operations under local anaesthetic (the area of skin being treated is numbed). Often these procedures are performed as outpatient or day case procedures. Malignant Melanoma This is the most serious form of skin cancer. It can spread to other parts of the body and people can die from this disease. A melanoma usually starts as a pigmented growth on normal skin. They often, but not always, occur on areas that have high sun exposure. In some cases, a melanoma may develop from existing pigmented moles. What to look for: an existing mole that changes colour (it may be black, dark blue or even red and white) the colour pigment may be uneven the edges of the mole/freckle may be irregular and have a spreading edge the surface of the mole/freckle may be flaky/crusted and raised sudden growth of an existing or new mole/freckle inflammation and or itchiness surrounding an existing or new mole/freckle. Treatment It is important that any suspect moles or freckles are checked by a GP or a dermatologist. The sooner a melanoma is treated, there is less chance of it spreading. A biopsy or removal will be carried out depending on the size of the cancer. Tissue samples will be sent for examination, as this will aid in diagnosis and help determine the type of treatment required. If the melanoma has spread more surgery may be required to take more of the affected skin. Samples from lymph nodes that are near to the cancer may be tested for spread, then chemotherapy or radiotherapy may be required to treat this spread. Once a melanoma has been diagnosed, a patient may be referred to an oncologist (a doctor who specialises in cancer). A melanoma that is in the early stages can be treated more successfully and cure rates are much higher than one that has spread.

Skin conditions dealt with by general surgery include lumps, tumours and other lesions of the skin and underlying tissues. These are often fairly simple conditions that can be dealt with by performing minor operations under local anaesthetic (the area of skin being treated is numbed). Often these procedures are performed as outpatient or day case procedures.

Malignant Melanoma

This is the most serious form of skin cancer. It can spread to other parts of the body and people can die from this disease.

A melanoma usually starts as a pigmented growth on normal skin.  They often, but not always, occur on areas that have high sun exposure.  In some cases, a melanoma may develop from existing pigmented moles.

What to look for:

  • an existing mole that changes colour  (it may be black, dark blue or even red and white)
  • the colour pigment may be uneven
  • the edges of the mole/freckle may be irregular and have a spreading edge
  • the surface of the mole/freckle may be flaky/crusted and raised
  • sudden growth of an existing or new mole/freckle
  • inflammation and or itchiness surrounding an existing or new mole/freckle.

Treatment
It is important that any suspect moles or freckles are checked by a GP or a dermatologist. The sooner a melanoma is treated, there is less chance of it spreading.

A biopsy or removal will be carried out depending on the size of the cancer.  Tissue samples will be sent for examination, as this will aid in diagnosis and help determine the type of treatment required.  If the melanoma has spread more surgery may be required to take more of the affected skin.  Samples from lymph nodes that are near to the cancer may be tested for spread, then chemotherapy or radiotherapy may be required to treat this spread. 

Once a melanoma has been diagnosed, a patient may be referred to an oncologist (a doctor who specialises in cancer).

A melanoma that is in the early stages can be treated more successfully and cure rates are much higher than one that has spread.

Breast Disorders Including Breast Cancer

General surgery covers breast diseases including breast cancer. These conditions are often initially dealt with in a specialised breast clinic which is able to perform a number of investigations (e.g. mammography, ultrasound, needle biopsy) during the initial outpatient clinic visit. Breast Cancer Surgery This may be: Simple or Total: all breast tissue, skin and the nipple are surgically removed but the muscles lying under the breast and the lymph nodes are left in place. Modified Radical: all breast tissue, skin and the nipple as well as some lymph tissue are surgically removed. Partial: the breast lump and a portion of other breast tissue (up to one quarter of the breast) as well as lymph tissue are surgically removed. Lumpectomy: the breast lump and surrounding tissue, as well as some lymph tissue, are surgically removed. When combined with radiation treatment, this is known as breast-conserving surgery.

General surgery covers breast diseases including breast cancer. These conditions are often initially dealt with in a specialised breast clinic which is able to perform a number of investigations (e.g. mammography, ultrasound, needle biopsy) during the initial outpatient clinic visit.

Breast Cancer Surgery

 This may be:

  • Simple or Total: all breast tissue, skin and the nipple are surgically removed but the muscles lying under the breast and the lymph nodes are left in place.
  • Modified Radical: all breast tissue, skin and the nipple as well as some lymph tissue are surgically removed.
  • Partial: the breast lump and a portion of other breast tissue (up to one quarter of the breast) as well as lymph tissue are surgically removed.
  • Lumpectomy: the breast lump and surrounding tissue, as well as some lymph tissue, are surgically removed. When combined with radiation treatment, this is known as breast-conserving surgery.
Gastrointestinal Disorders

Conditions of the gut dealt with by general surgery include disorders of the oesophagus, stomach, small bowel, large bowel and anus. These range from complex conditions such as ulceration or cancer in the bowel through to fairly minor conditions such as haemorrhoids. Many of the more major conditions such as bowel cancer will require surgery, or sometimes treatment with medication, chemotherapy or radiotherapy. Haemorrhoids are a condition where the veins under the lining of the anus are congested and enlarged. Less severe haemorrhoids can be managed with simple treatments such as injection or banding which can be performed in the clinic while larger ones will require surgery.

Conditions of the gut dealt with by general surgery include disorders of the oesophagus, stomach, small bowel, large bowel and anus. These range from complex conditions such as ulceration or cancer in the bowel through to fairly minor conditions such as haemorrhoids. Many of the more major conditions such as bowel cancer will require surgery, or sometimes treatment with medication, chemotherapy or radiotherapy.

Haemorrhoids are a condition where the veins under the lining of the anus are congested and enlarged. Less severe haemorrhoids can be managed with simple treatments such as injection or banding which can be performed in the clinic while larger ones will require surgery.
Gallstones

General surgery covers some disorders of the liver and biliary system. The most common of these is pain caused by gallstones. These are formed if the gallbladder is not working properly, and the standard treatment is to remove the gallbladder (cholecystectomy). This procedure is usually performed using a laparoscopic (keyhole) approach. Laparoscopic Cholecystectomy is the surgical removal of the gallbladder. A laparoscope is inserted into the abdominal cavity at the level of the tummy button. Surgical instruments are inserted through other incisions and the gallbladder removed.

General surgery covers some disorders of the liver and biliary system. The most common of these is pain caused by gallstones. These are formed if the gallbladder is not working properly, and the standard treatment is to remove the gallbladder (cholecystectomy). This procedure is usually performed using a laparoscopic (keyhole) approach.

Laparoscopic Cholecystectomy is the surgical removal of the gallbladder. A laparoscope is inserted into the abdominal cavity at the level of the tummy button. Surgical instruments are inserted through other incisions and the gallbladder removed.

Gastroscopy

Gastroscopy allows examination of the upper part of your digestive tract i.e. oesophagus (food pipe), stomach and duodenum (top section of the small intestine), by passing a gastroscope (long, flexible tube with a camera on the end) through your mouth and down your digestive tract. Images from the camera are displayed on a television monitor. Sometimes a small tissue sample (biopsy) will need to be taken during the procedure for later examination at a laboratory. Gastroscopy may be used to diagnose peptic ulcers, tumours, gastritis etc. Complications from this procedure are very rare but can occur. They include: bleeding if a biopsy is performed; allergic reaction to the sedative or throat spray; perforation (tearing) of the stomach with the instrument (this is a serious but extremely rare complication). What to expect All endoscopic procedures are viewed as a surgical procedure and generally the same preparation will apply. You will not be able to eat or drink anything for 6 hours before your gastroscopy. When you are ready for the procedure, the back of your throat will be sprayed with anaesthetic. You will also be offered medication (a sedative) to make you go into a light sleep. This will be given by an injection into a vein in your arm or hand. The gastroscopy will take approximately 15 minutes, but you will probably sleep for another 30 minutes. You will spend some time in a recovery unit (probably 1-2 hours) to sleep off the sedative and to allow staff to monitor you (take blood pressure readings etc). Because you have been sedated (given medication to make you sleep) it is important that you arrange for someone else to drive you home. If biopsies are taken for examination, your GP will be sent the results within 2-3 weeks.

Gastroscopy allows examination of the upper part of your digestive tract i.e. oesophagus (food pipe), stomach and duodenum (top section of the small intestine), by passing a gastroscope (long, flexible tube with a camera on the end) through your mouth and down your digestive tract. Images from the camera are displayed on a television monitor. Sometimes a small tissue sample (biopsy) will need to be taken during the procedure for later examination at a laboratory.

Gastroscopy may be used to diagnose peptic ulcers, tumours, gastritis etc.

Complications from this procedure are very rare but can occur. They include: bleeding if a biopsy is performed; allergic reaction to the sedative or throat spray; perforation (tearing) of the stomach with the instrument (this is a serious but extremely rare complication).

 

What to expect

All endoscopic procedures are viewed as a surgical procedure and generally the same preparation will apply. You will not be able to eat or drink anything for 6 hours before your gastroscopy. When you are ready for the procedure, the back of your throat will be sprayed with anaesthetic. You will also be offered medication (a sedative) to make you go into a light sleep. This will be given by an injection into a vein in your arm or hand.

The gastroscopy will take approximately 15 minutes, but you will probably sleep for another 30 minutes. You will spend some time in a recovery unit (probably 1-2 hours) to sleep off the sedative and to allow staff to monitor you (take blood pressure readings etc). Because you have been sedated (given medication to make you sleep) it is important that you arrange for someone else to drive you home.

If biopsies are taken for examination, your GP will be sent the results within 2-3 weeks.

Colonoscopy

Colonoscopy is the examination of your colon (large bowel) using a colonoscope (long, flexible tube with a camera on the end). The colonoscope is passed into your rectum (bottom) and then moved slowly along the entire colon, while images from the camera are displayed on a television monitor. The procedure takes from 10 minutes to an hour. Sometimes a small tissue sample (biopsy) will need to be taken during the procedure for later examination at a laboratory. A colonoscopy may help diagnose conditions such as polyps (small growths of tissue projecting into the bowel), tumours, ulcerative colitis (inflammation of the colon) and diverticulitis (inflammation of sacs that form on the walls of the colon). Colonoscopy may also be used to remove polyps in the colon. Risks of a colonoscopy are rare but include: bleeding if a biopsy is performed; allergic reaction to the sedative; perforation (tearing) of the bowel wall. What to expect It is important that the bowel is completely empty before the procedure takes place. This means that you will only be able to have liquids on the day before, and will probably have to take some oral laxative medication (to make you go to the toilet more). When you are ready for the procedure, you will be given medication (a sedative) to make you go into a light sleep. This will be given by an injection into a vein in your arm or hand. The colonoscopy will usually take 15 – 30 minutes, but you will probably sleep for another 30 minutes. Because you have been sedated (given medication to make you sleep) it is important that you arrange for someone else to drive you home. Some patients may experience discomfort after the procedure, due to air remaining in the colon.

Colonoscopy is the examination of your colon (large bowel) using a colonoscope (long, flexible tube with a camera on the end). The colonoscope is passed into your rectum (bottom) and then moved slowly along the entire colon, while images from the camera are displayed on a television monitor. The procedure takes from 10 minutes to an hour. Sometimes a small tissue sample (biopsy) will need to be taken during the procedure for later examination at a laboratory.

A colonoscopy may help diagnose conditions such as polyps (small growths of tissue projecting into the bowel), tumours, ulcerative colitis (inflammation of the colon) and diverticulitis (inflammation of sacs that form on the walls of the colon).

Colonoscopy may also be used to remove polyps in the colon.

Risks of a colonoscopy are rare but include: bleeding if a biopsy is performed; allergic reaction to the sedative; perforation (tearing) of the bowel wall.

 

What to expect

It is important that the bowel is completely empty before the procedure takes place. This means that you will only be able to have liquids on the day before, and will probably have to take some oral laxative medication (to make you go to the toilet more).

When you are ready for the procedure, you will be given medication (a sedative) to make you go into a light sleep. This will be given by an injection into a vein in your arm or hand.

The colonoscopy will usually take 15 – 30 minutes, but you will probably sleep for another 30 minutes. Because you have been sedated (given medication to make you sleep) it is important that you arrange for someone else to drive you home.

Some patients may experience discomfort after the procedure, due to air remaining in the colon.

Pharmacy

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Contact Details

Phoenix House, Pyne St, Whakatāne

Bay of Plenty

6:00 AM to 6:00 PM.

More details…

This page was last updated at 8:24AM on December 6, 2023. This information is reviewed and edited by Barnaby Smith – General, Bariatric and Endoscopic Surgeon.