Hepatobiliary, Pancreas & Gastrointestinal Cancer Surgery

Surgery offers the only chance of cure for most cancers found in organs of the gastrointestinal system, including the liver, stomach, pancreas, gallbladder, bile ducts and small bowel, as well as gastrointestinal stromal (GIST) cancers.

The complexity of the gastrointestinal system requires many different approaches to determine the best treatment for cancers in these organs. Depending on the exact type of cancer you have, your treatment plan may involve chemotherapy, radiation therapy or other medical treatments before or after surgery for the best chance of cure.

Customized Gastrointestinal Cancer Treatment

When you choose OU Health for gastrointestinal cancer surgery, you gain access to a highly trained and experienced team of surgical oncologists and other cancer experts at Stephenson Cancer Center, Oklahoma’s only NCI-Designated Cancer Center.

You and your OU Health cancer surgeons and care team work closely with these additional cancer specialists, including medical and radiation oncologists, to create a customized treatment plan designed to meet your needs.

Hepatobiliary, Pancreas & Gastrointestinal Cancer Surgery

Among the most challenging and aggressive of diseases, cancers of the pancreas, liver, gallbladder and bile ducts often require treatment that includes chemotherapy, and sometimes radiation therapy, along with surgery. Decisions about which treatment to use first – surgery, chemotherapy or radiation – can make a tremendous impact on your chance of cure.

Surgery to remove cancers from these organs requires specialized expertise and skills, as well as extensive experience to perform the technically challenging procedures. Many international and national cancer and surgical societies recommend getting these complicated operations at high-volume centers that specialize in cancer care and where experienced cancer surgeons perform these complex procedures every day. That’s why you benefit from working with the expert surgical oncologists at OU Health Stephenson Cancer Center in Oklahoma City.

Special Minimally Invasive Whipple Procedure for Pancreas Cancer

For cancer occurring in the head of the pancreas gland, you may qualify for a minimally invasive technique known as the Whipple procedure (pancreaticoduodenectomy). Available at only a few sites in the nation and, in Oklahoma, only at OU Health Stephenson Cancer Center, the laparoscopic Whipple procedure requires high-level surgical expertise to remove the cancer and affected organs while carefully reconstructing the abdominal area to maintain as much function as possible.

Liver Cancer

Because the liver performs so many important bodily functions, such as helping blood to clot and food to digest, clearing toxins and generating the energy we need to live, liver surgery presents an extreme challenge and requires great care, skill and expertise.

Surgical procedures for cancers of the liver may depend on whether the disease started in the liver itself (hepatocellular cancer, cholangiocarcinoma) or whether cancer spread to the liver from other organs. Surgery can involve removing small or very large portions of the liver. For some cancer types, liver transplant may offer your best treatment option.

Minimally Invasive or Robotic-Assisted Surgery

After extensive evaluation, your OU Health team may recommend a variety of standard surgical techniques for your specific circumstances and will determine if you may benefit from minimally invasive or robotic-assisted surgery. These procedures use tiny precision instruments with a miniature camera and require only a few small incisions, which can reduce scarring and the risk of infection while speeding your recovery.

No matter which procedure fits your needs, you can rely on receiving top-quality cancer surgery care at OU Health Stephenson Cancer Center.

Follow-Up Treatments

Once the surgical procedure removes the tumor, your Stephenson Center team may suggest follow-up care with noninvasive treatments such as chemotherapy / infusion or radiation / proton therapy to eliminate any remaining cancer cells.

Explore stomach and gastrointestinal cancer care, liver cancer care and pancreas cancer care at Stephenson Cancer Center, including clinical trials and patient navigation services, as well as surgical oncology and more surgery services at OU Health.

Your Expert Gastrointestinal Cancer Surgery Team

In addition to teaching the next generation of surgeons and surgical oncologists at OU Health, your extensively experienced Stephenson Cancer Center surgery team leads the region in performing all types of gastrointestinal cancer surgery procedures, including the minimally invasive laparoscopic Whipple procedure for pancreatic cancer. You benefit from working with board-certified and fellowship-trained surgery experts who focus on delivering the best possible outcomes for your specific situation.

Request an Appointment

Find out more about your surgery options for cancers of the liver, gallbladder, bile duct, pancreas and gastrointestinal organs at OU Health Stephenson Cancer Center in Oklahoma City.

Call today at (405) 271-1632 or toll-free at (855) 750-2273.
man and girl painting a wall
Explore Supportive Care services for your cancer journey Learn More
Find out how you may qualify to enroll in a cancer clinical trial Learn More
Find out you’re at risk for diabetes Learn More
See what our commitment to ending diabetes in this century means for you Learn More