Partnership brings surgical specialists to Northwest Indiana

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Surgical team: Hospitals in Franciscan Alliance's Northern Indiana Region can offer a full array of cardiovascular and thoracic surgical services due to a partnership between the hospitals' staff and specialists from Cardiothoracic & Vascular Surgical Associates S.C. | Supplied photo

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No need to travel far for specialized surgery. Experts are found right in Northwest Indiana communities.

Franciscan Alliance’s Northern Indiana Region hospitals offer access to a full array of cardiovascular and thoracic surgical services through a longtime partnership with renowned Oak Lawn, Ill.-based Cardiothoracic & Vascular Surgical Associates S.C., whose members team with the hospitals’ other highly skilled and qualified staff physicians.

Patients need not travel outside of the area for such procedures as newly offered video-assisted thoracoscopic lobectomy surgery, which is performed locally by physicians Eias Jweied, M.D., and Chadrick Cross, M.D. Both are among board-certified and fellowship-trained specialists from the CTVSA group who are on staff at Franciscan Alliance hospitals. The minimally invasive surgery, which involves smaller incisions, less pain and allows faster patient recovery times, is being offered at Franciscan St. Anthony Health-Crown Point and will become available to patients at the region’s other hospitals, which include Franciscan St. Margaret Health-Dyer and Hammond, Franciscan St. Anthony Health-Michigan City, and Franciscan Physicians Hospital in Munster.

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“With the minimally invasive lobectomy for lung cancer, the average hospital stays are two to three days, compared to seven to 10 days with conventional surgery,” Dr. Jweied said.

The procedure, which mostly treats stages one and two lung cancers, involves using a small camera that is introduced into the patient through a one-inch incision, which allows the physician to view the instruments and the anatomy. Two additional one-inch incisions are employed to pass instruments through and the lobe is delivered through a three-inch incision. The absence of the traditional long thoracotomy incision and the avoidance of spreading open the rib-cage reduces incisional pain and allows for a faster recovery. Patients ambulate in the hallway a few hours after surgery.

“The public needs to be better informed that this procedure is available locally, since many people think they have to drive to Chicago to receive it. Franciscan Alliance hospitals offer excellent care and results, and we treat every patient as our most important patient. They do not need to travel to Chicago to receive the surgeries that our group performs in Illinois; we bring that expertise here, to them,” Dr. Jweied said.

Besides Drs. Jweied and Cross, Cardiothoracic and Vascular Surgical Associates physicians who serve Franciscan Alliance hospitals include Drs. Pat S. Pappas, Antone Tatooles, George T. Hodakowski, Hilton Hudson II, Paul J. Gordon and Michael A. Bresticker, all of whom are cardiovascular and thoracic surgery specialists.

Provided by Franciscan Alliance