UCSD Medical Center reports United States' first oral appendix removal

March 17, 2008

On Wednesday, March 12, 2008, surgeons at UC San Diego Medical Center performed what is believed to be the country’s first removal of a diseased appendix through the mouth. This clinical trial procedure received approval for a limited number of patients by UC San Diego’s Institutional Review Board (IRB) which oversees clinical research.

“The purpose of this clinical trial is to test more ‘patient-focused’ techniques for minimally invasive surgery,” said Mark A. Talamini, M.D., professor and chair of the Department of Surgery at UC San Diego Medical Center. “UC San Diego Medical Center is testing groundbreaking ways in which to perform surgery with fewer incisions, less pain, and more rapid recoveries.”

Santiago Horgan, M.D., professor and director of UC San Diego’s Center for the Future of Surgery, and Talamini, president elect of the Society of American Gastrointestinal and Endoscopic Surgeons, performed the surgery on Jeff Scholz, a 42-year old California resident. UC San Diego Medical Center is first U.S.-based hospital to perform this procedure. India is the only other country to report such an operation.

“UC San Diego’s Center for the Future of Surgery is advancing scarless techniques by investigating, developing, testing, and teaching procedures that will revolutionize the field of surgery,” said Horgan, president of the Minimally Invasive Robotics Association and a global leader in scarless procedures.

“Only one small incision to insert a small camera in the belly button was required to complete the surgery versus three incisions required for a laparoscopic procedure,” said Horgan. “The patient was discharged 20 hours after surgery and is now reporting minimal pain which is a goal for all of our patients.”

“I had to have my appendix removed and the opportunity to participate in something so innovative sounded enticing. A day after surgery, I have little pain, a ‘2’ on a scale of 1 to 10,” said Scholz, a resident of La Jolla. “My father had the conventional appendix removal. I didn’t want the standard issue scar on the abdomen.”

The procedure, called Natural Orifice Translumenal Endoscopic Surgery (NOTES), involves passing surgical instruments, and a tiny camera, through a natural orifice, such as the mouth, to the desired organ. By avoiding major incisions through the abdomen, patients may experience a quicker recovery with less pain while reducing the risk of post operative hernias.

Horgan and Talamini used FDA-cleared EndoSurgical Operating System (EOS) developed by USGI Medical, Inc. to perform the procedure. EOS was passed through the patient’s mouth and into the stomach where a small incision was made in the stomach wall to pass the instrument through to the appendix for removal.

Source: University of California - San Diego

Explore further: How the human brain detects the 'music' of speech

Related Stories

How the human brain detects the 'music' of speech

August 24, 2017
Researchers at UC San Francisco have identified neurons in the human brain that respond to pitch changes in spoken language, which are essential to clearly conveying both meaning and emotion.

In utero stem cell transplants may replace riskier childhood transplants for multiple conditions

August 31, 2017
UCSF Benioff Children's Hospitals in San Francisco and Oakland will pioneer stem cell transplants for a uniquely challenging patient population: second-trimester fetuses stricken with a potentially fatal disease.

How video goggles and a tiny implant could cure blindness

August 25, 2017
At 16, Lynda Johnson was ready to learn how to drive. Yes, she had a progressive eye disease, retinitis pigmentosa, which already had stolen her night vision. But throughout her childhood, the Millbrae, California, girl had ...

Breast cancer patients who freeze their eggs see no delay for chemotherapy

September 11, 2017
Women who receive a breast cancer diagnosis while they are still young enough to bear children can take time to freeze their eggs and embryos without fear of delaying their cancer treatment, according to research by UC San ...

Scientists are diving deep into the structure and function of ion channels to inform new therapies

September 1, 2017
A growing cohort of talented Northwestern Medicine scientists is working to unlock the secrets of ion channels and discover how these tiny molecular machines contribute to an array of diseases, from brain tumors and epilepsy ...

New tool may allow doctors to 'see' bacterial infection in the body

August 31, 2017
UC San Francisco scientists have developed an imaging tool that could soon allow doctors to locate and visualize bacterial infections in the body and to rule out other common causes of inflammation, such as autoimmune reactions.

Recommended for you

Drug therapy from lethal bacteria could reduce kidney transplant rejection

August 3, 2017
An experimental treatment derived from a potentially deadly microorganism may provide lifesaving help for kidney transplant patients, according to an international study led by investigators at Cedars-Sinai.

Exploring the potential of human echolocation

June 25, 2017
People who are visually impaired will often use a cane to feel out their surroundings. With training and practice, people can learn to use the pitch, loudness and timbre of echoes from the cane or other sounds to navigate ...

Team eradicates hepatitis C in 10 patients following lifesaving transplants from infected donors

April 30, 2017
Ten patients at Penn Medicine have been cured of the Hepatitis C virus (HCV) following lifesaving kidney transplants from deceased donors who were infected with the disease. The findings point to new strategies for increasing ...

'bench to bedside to bench': Scientists call for closer basic-clinical collaborations

March 24, 2017
In the era of genome sequencing, it's time to update the old "bench-to-bedside" shorthand for how basic research discoveries inform clinical practice, researchers from The Jackson Laboratory (JAX), National Human Genome Research ...

The ethics of tracking athletes' biometric data

January 18, 2017
(Medical Xpress)—Whether it is a FitBit or a heart rate monitor, biometric technologies have become household devices. Professional sports leagues use some of the most technologically advanced biodata tracking systems to ...

Financial ties between researchers and drug industry linked to positive trial results

January 18, 2017
Financial ties between researchers and companies that make the drugs they are studying are independently associated with positive trial results, suggesting bias in the evidence base, concludes a study published by The BMJ ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.