Common Surgical Tests & Procedures


An appendectomy is the surgical removal of the appendix, a small tube that branches off the large intestine, to treat acute appendicitis. Appendicitis is the acute inflammation of this tube due to infection.


Barium enema
A barium enema is an x-ray test used to examine the lower digestive tract (the colon and rectum). Because the colon and rectum are normally not visible on x-rays, you need to temporarily coat their inner surfaces with barium, a liquid that does show up on x-rays. This makes the outline of these organs visible on the x-ray pictures. This test is useful for diagnosing cancers and diverticuli (small pouches that may form in the intestinal wall).


Barium Swallow
A barium swallow, or upper GI series, is an x-ray test used to examine the upper digestive tract (the esophagus, stomach, and small intestine). Because these organs are normally not visible on x-rays, you need to swallow barium, a liquid that does show up on x-rays. The barium temporarily coats the lining of the esophagus, stomach, and intestine, making the outline of these organs visible on the x-ray pictures. This test is useful for diagnosing cancers, ulcers, problems that cause narrowing of the esophagus, some causes of inflammation in the intestine, and some swallowing problems.


Barron Ligation
Rubber band ligation is a procedure in which the hemorrhoid is tied off at its base with rubber bands, cutting off the blood flow to the hemorrhoid. This treatment is only for internal hemorrhoids.


A cholecystectomy is a surgical procedure to remove your gallbladder. The gallbladder is responsible for storage of a small amount of bile for use after a fatty meal. However, when the gallbladder gets stones that have formed, it will often get symptoms of pain and bloating. These are signs that more serious complications such as infection and bile duct blockage may also occur.


Inguinal Hernias Repair
Inguinal hernias are the common type of hernias. In men, the inguinal canal is where the testes descend before birth. The canal contains the spermatic cord and blood vessels. When an inguinal hernia occurs part of the intestine protrude down the canal and into the scrotum. Inguinal hernias are more common in men than women because the canal is bigger.


Femoral Hernia Repair
More common in women, femoral hernias occur when part of the intestine protrudes through the femoral canal and protrudes through at the top of the thigh. The femoral canal is where the main blood vessels pass that supply the legs.


Umbilical Hernia Repair
An umbilical hernia occurs when the abdominal wall is weakened at the point of the umbilical cord. Umbilical hernias are most common in children.


Epigastric Hernia Repair
Epigastric hernias are protrusions of fat or sometimes intestine through the abdominal wall between the navel and the breastbone.


Ventral Hernia Repair
This type of hernia occurs when scar tissue weakens the abdominal wall such as following a surgical operation or following trauma.


Hiatus Hernia Repair
A hiatus hernia occurs when the upper part of the stomach protrudes through the diaphragm, a hole usually occupied by the esophagus.

There are two main types of a hiatus hernia’s.

  • The sliding hiatus hernia which is the most common. The sphincter at the bottom of the esophagus and the top of the stomach protrude through the hole (hiatus) in the diaphragm. A hernia may slide up and down, in and out of the lower chest. This type of hernia is often quite small.
  • Rolling hiatus hernia is less common. Part of the stomach protrudes up through the hole in the diaphragm next to the esophagus.


A hemicolectomy is a type of surgery done to remove part of your large intestine called your colon. Your colon can be partially removed without affecting the way it works in your digestive system. Once the affected part is removed, the remaining ends are joined together with almost no impact on your digestion. This procedure is done if your colon has been affected by a condition or has become cancerous.

Some common conditions treated by a hemicolectomy include:

• cancer of your colon or bowels
• trauma or injury to your abdominal area
• inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), such as ulcerative colitis or Crohns disease
• polyps, or tissue growths in your colon that can become cancerous
• diverticulitis, which happens when diverticula (small pouches) in your colon get infected or inflamed


A hemorrhoidectomy is the surgical removal of hemorrhoids, distended veins in the lower rectum or anus. Hemorrhoids are swollen veins. Veins around the anus tend to stretch under pressure. When these veins swell, they are called “hemorrhoids.” One set of veins is inside the rectum (internal hemorrhoids) and another is under the skin around the anus (external hemorrhoids).

Internal Hemorrhoids
Internal hemorrhoids usually are not painful, but may bleed. Sometimes, an internal hemorrhoid may stretch until it bulges outside the anus. This is called a prolapsed hemorrhoid. A prolapsed hemorrhoid can go back inside the rectum on its own, or it can be gently pushed back inside. If the prolapsed hemorrhoid cannot be pushed back inside, consultation with a physician about surgical treatment options is necessary.

External Hemorrhoids
External hemorrhoids involve the veins outside the anus. They can be itchy or painful and can sometimes crack and bleed. If a blood clot forms, one may feel a tender lump on the edge of the anus, and see bright red blood on toilet paper or in the toilet after a bowel movement.


A mastectomy is the removal of all or part of the breast. Mastectomies are usually performed to treat breast cancer. There are several types of mastectomies, including the following:

Total (or simple) mastectomy, in which the surgeon removes the entire breast, including: the nipple, the areola, and most of the overlying skin, and may also remove some of the lymph nodes under the arm.

Partial (segmental) mastectomy, involves: the removal of the breast cancer and a larger portion of the normal breast tissue around the breast cancer

Modified radical mastectomy, in which the surgeon removes: the entire breast, some of the lymph nodes under the arm, and the lining over the chest muscles. In some cases, part of the chest wall muscles is also removed.

Radical mastectomy, involves removal of the entire breast, the lymph nodes under the arm, and the chest muscles.


Punch Biopsy
A punch biopsy is a diagnostic test where a small, tube-shaped piece of skin and some other tissue underneath are removed using a sharp cutting tool. It can be done anywhere on the body. The tissue is then examined under a microscope.


An ultrasound is an imaging method that uses high- frequency sound waves using a transducer to produce images of structures within your body.

An MRI scanner is essentially a large magnet that has a very powerful magnetic field 15,000 times the force of gravity. Metal objects and electronic devices are therefore extremely unsafe in an MRI environment.

CT or CAT Scan
A CT scan is also known as computed tomography or CAT scan. CT scans are used to look inside the body. A CT scan is a type of x-ray that creates pictures of your internal organs in more detail than a regular x- ray.

X-rays are an invisible form of radiation used to make pictures of the bones and organs of your body.