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In the Press | Patient Testimonials

It’s clearly evident that many, many patients have benefited from the innovative approaches performed by the MIMIS surgeons. We invite you to read the following summary that represents a partial listing of their individual and group accomplishments, and consistently excellent patient results. MIMIS is poised to remain at the forefront of all surgical advancements.

When JH, 29, of Milwaukee had a grapefruit-sized benign tumor removed from her liver, she was happily surprised to be out of the hospital in two days, back to work in just 2 weeks and with only small scars to show for her operation. The surgery, performed by Dr. Lyle Henry, chief surgeon at Columbia St. Mary’s Hospital Milwaukee and MIMIS co-founder, was among the first of its kind in Wisconsin.

A new study in the American College of Surgeons (February, 2003) pointed out several advantages to laparoscopic liver surgery, including decreased hospital stays, less blood loss, fewer surgical complications, decreased pain after surgery, reduced trauma to the abdominal wall and reduced scar tissue. The study concluded that laparoscopy should become the standard approach for liver surgeries, except when tumors are extremely large.

Dr. Grace Janik and Dr. Charles Koh, internationally known reproductive specialists and surgeons at the Reproductive Specialty Center and MIMIS, went to France to train in a new infertility diagnostic procedure known as fertiloscopy. Columbia St. Mary’s and MIMIS is now the only Midwest location and just the third in the U.S. to offer this non-invasive procedure.

The new technique replaces a combination of more painful, time-consuming and costly tests, including a very uncomfortable x-ray exam and three tests done under general anesthesia in a hospital operating room. These tests were done over a period of a few months. Involving only one procedure versus four, fertiloscopy is less expensive and does not require checking into the hospital.

With fertiloscopy, doctors can zero in on a correct diagnosis in as little as 10 minutes, Dr. Koh explained. “All of that is done in one sitting in the office without anesthesia,” he said. During the procedure women can interact with their doctors while watching the examination on a monitor, allowing patients to ask questions and participate in their own treatment.

Athletic pubalgia, also known as sports hernia, can take an athlete out of contention for extended periods of time. Traditional surgery was once the only treatment for this condition. Now, a less invasive surgery can get athletes back to their game quicker and with minimal pain during recovery.

Laparoscopic repair of athletic pubalgia is a precise surgical procedure developed by MIMIS surgeons and performed by only a few surgeons in the world. Dr. Richard Cattey, chief of surgery at Columbia St. Mary’s Ozaukee Campus and a founding member of MIMIS, is known worldwide for his expertise in athletic pubalgia operations.

Dr. Cattey has a 100% success rate for surgeries of this type. This innovative surgical technique has allowed MIMIS athletic patients, including Olympic competitors, to successfully return to their sport of choice.

Most people think of hip injuries when they consider fractures associated with osteoporosis. Actually, osteoporosis causes 700,000 spinal fractures every year - - twice as many as hip fractures.

In the past, when an elderly person suffered such a fracture, the treatment was bed rest, pain medications and back braces. If these treatments failed, the only other option was surgery, but it was often painful, had complications and did not restore the spine’s original shape. All that has changed with a new, minimally invasive technique called kyphoplasty.

Kyphoplasty involves a small incision of only 1-2 centimeters into which a specially-designed surgical balloon is inserted to open the collapsed bone. The process is similar to angioplasty, in which a balloon is used to open up a compressed artery that is blocked by plaque, “but you put a stent in the artery in angioplasty, and here, you also put (surgical) cement into the structure,” according to Dr. Stephen Robbins, orthopaedic surgeon at Columbia St. Mary’s Hospital Milwauee and MIMIS physician.

Studies show a 90% success rate in the reduction of pain. The day after surgery, patients are discharged and they can return to their normal activities, pain-free. “The problem is fixed almost instantaneously,” added Dr. Robbins.

The surgery can also prevent or improve kyphosis or “dowager’s hump” the spinal deformity that can cause additional health problems. Kyphosis can make walking, eating and sleeping painful or difficult. Even more threatening are the health risks associated with kyphosis such as breathing impairment and compounding health problems such as additional spinal fractures. “The procedure has had very good results in pain resolution and some improvement in deformity,” concludes Dr. Robbins.

Today, Dr. Lyle Henry and Dr. Charles Koh, co-directors of the institute, and the MIMIS team of physicians continually integrate new procedures and improve upon existing ones to deliver state-of-the-art laparoscopic treatment. While not all surgeries can be done laparoscopically, many can and should be offered if the choice is available, according to Dr. Henry. “If it’s an option, and frequently it is, the biggest hold-up is that some surgeons just don’t do it” he said. “People need to see a surgeon who has extensive laparoscopic experience, and we are going to continue to push the envelope … as long as it can be done safely,” Dr. Henry concluded.


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