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Surgery for Gynecologic Cancer

UPMC Content 2

Surgery for gynecologic cancer typically involves removal of the tumor, and may include removal of the:

  • Cervix
  • Uterus
  • Ovaries
  • Other pelvic organs

The Magee-Womens Gynecologic Cancer Program in Pittsburgh, Pa., offers the latest surgical treatment options for gynecologic cancers.

Our expert surgeons will:

  • Evaluate the size and location of your tumor.
  • Attempt to remove as much of the tumor as possible. Reducing the size of the tumor improves the efficiency of subsequent chemotherapy and radiation therapy, since there is less tumor to treat.
  • Guide you to the appropriate surgical procedure for your type of gynecologic cancer.

In some cases, surgeons may also perform a colostomy — a temporary or permanent surgical procedure that alters the way stool is passed.

Types of Surgery for Gynecologic Cancers

Standard surgical procedures for gynecologic cancers include:

Procedure Description
Staging surgery Removal of tissue samples from different parts of the pelvis and abdomen to determine the stage of cancer, or how far the cancer has spread. This will help determine the best course of treatment, as cancers in different stages may be treated differently.
Debulking surgery Removal of as much of the tumor as possible; typically in preparation for chemotherapy, so there’s less tumor to treat.
Total hysterectomy Removal of the uterus, including the cervix.
Radical hysterectomy Removal of the uterus, cervix, and part of the vagina; the ovaries, fallopian tubes, or nearby lymph nodes may also be removed.
Unilateral salpingo-oophorectomy Removal of one ovary and one fallopian tube.
Bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy Removal of both ovaries and both fallopian tubes.
Omentectomy Removal of the omentum (a fat pad within the abdominal cavity).
Lymph node removal Removal of all or a portion of lymph nodes.

More Surgical Procedures for Gynecologic Cancers

Additional surgical procedures available at the Gynecologic Cancer Program include: