I am a Consultant in Upper Gastrointestinal and Oesophagogastric Surgery based at Royal Stoke University Hospital where we provide specialist services for patients with oesophageal and stomach cancer. I am proud to work here in the seventh largest unit in the UK.
I also provide emergency general surgery services as part of the Trust’s trauma centre status and elective care for complex benign upper gastrointestinal conditions.
From the outset of my medical studies, I have I always wanted to do something challenging and trained in cardiac and liver transplant surgery in London where I developed an interest in the oesophagus. It is a technical challenge from a surgical perspective and also demands an empathic approach and specialist communication skills.
I was attracted to this speciality because of the multi-disciplinary team approach - each patient requires expert input from a variety of healthcare professionals and it is a true team effort.
The specialty is constantly evolving with new therapies and techniques coming on board and there are many debates in oesophagogastric surgery which I have the opportunity to contribute to.
It is always an immense privilege to support patients on their journey, from diagnosis, staging, chemotherapy, major surgery to regular outpatient follow up – often for years afterwards. Seeing patients recover their quality of life after such major surgery is always a memorable experience.
I have a special interest in minimally invasive “keyhole” surgery combined with radical lymph node removal for oesophagogastric cancer. Keyhole surgery for complex hiatal hernias both planned elective surgery and in the emergency setting.
The favourite thing about my job is being able to witness patients recover their quality of life after being diagnosed with cancer and completing major multi-modality treatment and not sure I really have a least favourite part of the job. You take the rough with the smooth and always try to take positives out of any situation. Every day is a school day!