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General Surgery | Te Tai Tokerau (Northland) | Te Whatu Ora

Public Service, General Surgery, Plastic Surgery

Description

Formerly Northland DHB General Surgery
 
What is General Surgery?
The role of the General Surgical Department varies from hospital to hospital, 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 hospitals, 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.
 
A Plastic Surgery and Oncoplastic Breast service also supports work undertaken in general surgery.

Consultants

Note: Please note below that some people are not available at all locations.

  • Dr William Anderson

    General Surgeon - Breast and Melanoma

    Available at Whangārei Hospital, Kaitaia Hospital

  • Mr Christopher Harmston

    General Surgeon - Colorectal

    Available at Whangārei Hospital, Kaitaia Hospital

  • Mr John Lengyel

    General Surgeon - Colorectal

    Available at Whangārei Hospital, Kaitaia Hospital, Dargaville Hospital, 77 Awakino Road, Dargaville

  • Mr Sean Liddle

    General Surgeon - Bariatric

    Available at Whangārei Hospital, Kaitaia Hospital, Bay of Islands Hospital

  • Dr Andrew Miller

    General Surgeon – Colorectal & Surgical Endoscopist

    Available at all locations.

  • Mr Raj Patel

    General Surgeon - Breast Oncoplastic, Melanoma, Skin and Endocrine Specialist

    Available at Whangārei Hospital, Kaitaia Hospital

  • Mr Christopher Powell

    Consultant Plastic Surgeon

    Available at Whangārei Hospital

  • Dr Maxine Ronald

    General Surgeon - Breast and Oncoplastic

    Available at Whangārei Hospital, Kaitaia Hospital

  • Mr Mark Sanders

    General Surgeon - Colorectal

    Available at Whangārei Hospital, Kaitaia Hospital, Dargaville Hospital, 77 Awakino Road, Dargaville

  • Dr Usha Shan

    General Surgeon - Breast and Oncoplastic

    Available at Whangārei Hospital, Kaitaia Hospital, Bay of Islands Hospital

  • Mr Peter Swan

    General Surgeon - Upper GI interest

    Available at all locations.

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.

Common Conditions

Colonoscopy

Colonoscopy

CTC ( Computerised Colonography)

Click here to view a patient information sheet for CTC.

Click here to view a patient information sheet for CTC.

Gallstones

Gallstones

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. For information about colonoscopy, please see below.

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.

For information about colonoscopy, please see below.

Hernias

Hernias

Skin Disorders

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.

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.

Thyroid, Parathyroid, and Other Endocrine Disorders

Abnormalities of the endocrine system treated by general surgery include disorders of the pancreas and adrenal glands in the abdomen and the thyroid and parathyroid glands in the neck. These are often very complex conditions requiring extensive investigations. If surgery is required it is often quite complicated and will usually mean a stay in hospital for several days or even longer.

Abnormalities of the endocrine system treated by general surgery include disorders of the pancreas and adrenal glands in the abdomen and the thyroid and parathyroid glands in the neck. These are often very complex conditions requiring extensive investigations. If surgery is required it is often quite complicated and will usually mean a stay in hospital for several days or even longer.

Vascular Disorders

Vascular (blood vessel) disorders treated by general surgery include varicose veins, blockages and narrowings in the arteries or abnormal swellings of the arteries (aneurysm). The most common of these conditions facing the general surgeon is varicose veins. This occurs when veins in the legs and thighs become enlarged and twisted. This is often caused by the failure of the one-way valve system in the veins, in which case it can be treated surgically by removing the segments of veins containing the malfunctioning valves as well as those veins which are significantly dilated. Treatment of varicose veins now also includes the option of injection therapy. The General Surgery team does not currently have the capacity to see patients with varicose veins other than those with ulcers caused by the varicose veins or skin changes to suggest ulcers are beginning to form. Apppointments cannot be offered to those with no symptoms where the concern is related to how they look, or for those with aching or swelling of the legs.

Vascular (blood vessel) disorders treated by general surgery include varicose veins, blockages and narrowings in the arteries or abnormal swellings of the arteries (aneurysm).

The most common of these conditions facing the general surgeon is varicose veins. This occurs when veins in the legs and thighs become enlarged and twisted. This is often caused by the failure of the one-way valve system in the veins, in which case it can be treated surgically by removing the segments of veins containing the malfunctioning valves as well as those veins which are significantly dilated.

Treatment of varicose veins now also includes the option of injection therapy.

The General Surgery team does not currently have the capacity to see patients with varicose veins other than those with ulcers caused by the varicose veins or skin changes to suggest ulcers are beginning to form.

Apppointments cannot be offered to those with no symptoms where the concern is related to how they look, or for those with aching or swelling of the legs.

Plastic / Reconstructive Surgery

Plastic surgery covers a wide range of different surgical procedures that repair, reconstruct or replace structures in many different parts of the body including the skin, face and head, hands, breast and stomach. Plastic surgery does not involve the use of plastic materials. Plastic surgery can generally be divided into two main types: Reconstructive surgery: is performed on abnormal parts of the body that have been affected by a birth defect, an accident or disease. This includes cleft lip and palate repair, scar revision, reconstruction following burns. This surgery is usually performed to improve function, but may also be performed to bring the appearance of a part of the body as close as possible to normal. Aesthetic or cosmetic surgery: improves appearance or body image by reshaping features of the face or body e.g. breast enlargement or reduction, face lift, liposuction.

Plastic surgery covers a wide range of different surgical procedures that repair, reconstruct or replace structures in many different parts of the body including the skin, face and head, hands, breast and stomach. Plastic surgery does not involve the use of plastic materials.

Plastic surgery can generally be divided into two main types:

  • Reconstructive surgery: is performed on abnormal parts of the body that have been affected by a birth defect, an accident or disease. This includes cleft lip and palate repair, scar revision, reconstruction following burns. This surgery is usually performed to improve function, but may also be performed to bring the appearance of a part of the body as close as possible to normal. 
     
  • Aesthetic or cosmetic surgery: improves appearance or body image by reshaping features of the face or body e.g. breast enlargement or reduction, face lift, liposuction.

Contact Details

This page was last updated at 9:25AM on June 24, 2024. This information is reviewed and edited by General Surgery | Te Tai Tokerau (Northland) | Te Whatu Ora.