What is Pancreas and Hepatobilary Surgery?
The liver, pancreas, gallbladder and bile duct are known as the hepatobiliary and pancreatic system. Surgery to treat cancers and disorders in these organs is highly complicated and challenging and requires a high level of skill and expertise.
Hepato-Pancreato-Biliary surgery, or HPB surgery, is a subspecialty that surgically manages benign and malignant diseases of the liver, pancreas and biliary tract. The biliary tract (also known as the biliary tree or biliary system) includes the liver, gall bladder and bile ducts as they work together to produce, store or deliver bile. Bile performs a critical function in our bodies as it aids in breaking down fat, the removal of bilirubin, in the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins and more.
There are several reasons someone may require HPB surgery, including bile duct cancer, gallbladder cancer, liver cancer, pancreas cancer, pancreatic cysts, pancreatitis and neuroendocrine tumors. Surgery in this area can be complex and surgeons can use minimally invasive, laparoscopic surgeries to operate on the liver, pancreas or biliary system. To treat these and other concerns affecting the biliary tract, surgeons perform precise, advanced surgeries such as resections of the liver, pancreas, bile duct or gall bladder. Bile duct repairs, liver tumor ablation and the Whipple procedure are also performed to treat HPB-related issues.
Bile Duct Surgery
The bile ducts in your body are a network of tubes or pipes connecting the gallbladder, pancreas, and liver and transporting bile to the digestive system to process the food we eat. The bile ducts also remove waste from our organs, amongst other essential jobs. However, like other structures in the body, the bile duct can begin to malfunction due to inflammation or obstruction. This can be due to cysts, benign and malignant tumors, and infections such as pancreatitis or cholangitis. Bile duct injuries are often excruciating and can be fatal if left untreated.