A Beautiful New Heart: Audrey’s Story

Baby Audrey smiling in red dress at birthday party holding parents' hands.

Audrey was born with a rare combination of heart conditions. Thanks to an organ donor and the St. Louis Children’s and Washington University Heart Center team, she celebrated her first birthday at home with a new heart.

High Blood Pressure and Erectile Dysfunction

Doctor taking a blood pressure reading with cuff and stethoscope.

Both high blood pressure and erectile dysfunction are common among older men. Understanding the relationship between these conditions could help men find the treatment that’s right for them.

Demystifying the Circulatory System

Blood cells circulating through a vessel

The Department of Surgery explains terminology and components of the circulatory system. We use plain language to explain to describe what arteries, vessels, and related structures are, how they are different and some common conditions that affect them.

Neurogenic Bladder: Common Causes

Problems with signals from the nervous system to the bladder cause neurogenic bladder.

Neurogenic bladder is a condition in which the nerves signaling to the bladder have been damaged, resulting in dysfunction of the bladder muscles and function. Common causes include genetic nerve problems, birth defects, injury, stroke, diabetes, infection, brain or spinal cord tumors. Treatments include lifestyle changes, medicinal treatments and surgery.

Inflammatory Bowel Disease or Irritable Bowel Syndrome?

Comparison of IBS and IBD symptoms with medical illustration of the digestive system.

Inflammatory bowel disease and irritable bowel syndrome are two different gastrointestinal conditions. Learn more about each, and how Washington University Colon & Rectal Surgery provides team-based care for inflammatory bowel disease.

7 Things to Know About Lymphedema

Picture of Doctors Anolik, Sacks and Christensen at the school of medicine

Lymphedema is swelling caused by a blockage or damage to the lymphatic system. Most cases of lymphedema in the United States happen after cancer or cancer treatment. Understanding this condition can help with lymphedema prevention, management and treatment.

Coaching After Amputation: Sam’s Story

Sam Schaefer returning to his active lifestyle after amputation surgery. Text overlay reads "Coaching After Amputation: Sam's Story"

Sam Schaefer suffered from constant pain after an injury left him with a rare neurological condition. After a below-the-knee amputation at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, he is back to playing hockey, breaking world records and coaching at a local gym.

Cancer Staging: What, Why and How?

Featured graphic illustration of cancer cells in human lung with text overlay that reads "Cancer Staging: What, Why and How"

Cancer staging is an essential step in the cancer treatment process. When a patient is diagnosed with cancer, staging tests indicate the extent and progress of cancer. Knowing this information assists physicians in deciding treatment options and can also predict health outcomes for the patient.

The Impact of Persistent Smoking on Outcomes After Lung Cancer Surgery

Researchers from Washington University and Siteman Cancer Center conduct research on patient health outcomes after surgery for stage I non-small cell lung cancer to understand if persistent smoking after surgery is associated with worse survival. They conclude that persistent smoking after surgery decreases the survival rates of patients.

Disparities After Surgery: Readmission from Complications More Common for People of Color

Physicians at Washington University School of Medicine conducted a research study on the disparities of post-surgery complications and readmission, visualizing differences of readmission between white and non-white patients. Patients of color are more likely to require readmission after surgery, which may be related to other lived disparities, such as barriers to accessing equal healthcare to their white counterparts.

Ask the Doctor: Diverticulitis with Dr. Kerri Ohman

Diverticulitis is the inflammation or infection of diverticula, small pouches commonly occurring in the colon. The presence of diverticula is known as diverticulosis. If one or several diverticula become inflamed or infected, diverticulitis develops. Diverticulitis causes abdominal pain, fever, nausea and a changes in bowel habits. Mild diverticulitis can be treated with rest, changes in diet and use of antibiotics, but severe or persistent attacks of diverticulitis requires surgery.

Meet the Pancreatic Cancer Team

A collage of images featuring the Pancreatic Cancer Surgeons from Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis.

Meet the Pancreatic Cancer Team Washington University hepatobiliary-pancreatic & gastrointestinal (HPB-GI) surgeons, along with the multidisciplinary team of specialists at Siteman Cancer Center, are nationally recognized for their screening, diagnosis and treatment of pancreatic cancer. According to the American Cancer Society, pancreatic cancer is the eighth most common cancer in women and the tenth most […]

Meet the Lung Cancer Team

Washington University thoracic surgeons provide the highest level of care for patients with lung cancer.

Washington University’s Surgical Prehabilitation and Readiness (SPAR) Program

Prehabilitation (or rehabilitation before surgery) helps patients be healthy and strong before surgery and has been shown to improve recovery and health outcomes. The Surgical Prehabilitation and Readiness (SPAR) program at Washington University guides patients for the weeks before a procedure by providing strategies and goals to prepare their body and mind.

The Essentials of Biological Tissue Grafts, Donation and Research at Washington University

There are several sources for biological tissue grafts used for reconstructive, reparative or replacement surgery. Allografts are obtained from tissue donors and transplanted into recipients through the tissue donation process. The decision to donate involves registration as a donor and is an important conversation to have with family. Ongoing surgery and research at Washington University benefits from the donation of tissue grafts or specimens from consented donors.

Health Literacy Month – October 2021

Katherine Glover-Collins, MD, discuss what to expect before surgery with a patient.

Celebrating health literacy this October comes with two initiatives: to increase personal literacy and improve organizational literacy. Patient health literacy and education are important goals for those seeking medical treatment, and hospital programs can encourage the familiarity of patients with the language of health. Organizations are also responsible for providing accessible, understandable information to their patients.

Breast Cancer Care

Breast Cancer Surgery

Washington University surgical oncologists and plastic and reconstructive surgeons provide the highest level of care for people with breast cancer.

Growing the Peritoneal Disease Program

Beth Helmink, MD, PhD, and Sean Glasgow, MD, discuss the peritoneal disease program at Washington University School of Medicine.

The Future of Endocrine Surgery

Future of Endocrine Surgery

What does the legacy of excellence in endocrine surgery at Washington University School of Medicine and Siteman Cancer Center mean for patients? Our surgical oncologists have experience with a high volume of complex cases, making them experts in endocrine surgery.

Ask the Doctors: Kidney Stones

Alana Desai, MD

Kidney stones are exceptionally common and affect nearly one in ten Americans. Those who have suffered from stones understand that kidney stones can be incredibly painful when they begin to pass. Washington University Urology offers advanced care for the treatment and prevention of kidney stones. In order to help the public know more about this […]

Ask the Doctors: Hiatal Hernias

Washington University cardiothoracic surgeon Shuddhadeb Ray, MD, MPHS, answers patient questions about hiatal hernias.

Taking Action for Men’s Health

Picture of Doctors Bullock and Venkatesh in the clinic with text overlay that reads "Washington University Urology: Men's Health Experts"

Men’s health experts from Washington University Urology offer ways to take control of important men’s health issues.

When to Get Screened for Prostate Cancer

Chief of Urology Gerald Andriole, MD, explains the importance of prostate cancer screening and how early detection can save lives.

What to Know about Hernias

Surgeons Jeffrey Blatnik, MD, Sara Holden, MD, and Arnab Majumder, MD, in an operating room with text overlay that reads: "What to know about hernias."

Washington University hernia surgeons explain the causes and types of hernia, as well as symptoms to look out for and treatment options for hernias.

Still Standing

Image of patient standing in clinic with text overlay that reads "Still Standing. A multidisciplinary team of Washington University surgeons saved Julius Moss from having an amputation after his diabetic foot ulcer refused to heal."

A multidisciplinary team of Washington University surgeons saved Julius Moss from having an amputation after his diabetic foot ulcer refused to heal.

Acute and Critical Care Surgery

Picture of ambulance outside of hospital with text overlay that reads "Acute & Critical Care Surgery at Washington University School of Medicine"

Washington University Acute and Critical Care Surgeons specialize in traumatic injuries, emergency surgeries, geriatric trauma, general surgeries, burn and wound care and critical care.

Surgery Superheroes: Pediatric Liver Transplant

St. Louis Children's Hospital visuals with a cartoon-like background and reads "Superhero Day."

The Washington University pediatric liver care and transplant team at St. Louis Children’s Hospital shares what makes their pediatric patients superheroes in their eyes.

Advancing Cardiothoracic Care: Shuddhadeb Ray, MD, MPHS

Doctors Munfakh and Ray at Christian Hospital

Cardiothoracic surgeon Shuddhadeb Ray, MD, MPHS, brings his expertise in heart, lung, and esophageal surgery to Christian Hospital after a decade of training at Washington University School of Medicine.

Use of Robotics in Bariatric Surgery is on the Rise

Davinci Surgical Robot

A new study from the Department of Surgery shows that the use of robotics for weight loss surgery has increased in recent years. Bariatric surgeons and public health scientists examine this rise and what it might mean for the future of weight loss surgery.

Saying Yes to Organ Donation

Chief of Transplant Surgery, Dr. Will Chapman

An organ donor can save as many as seven lives. Still, some people have concerns about becoming an organ donor. Transplant surgeon William Chapman, MD, explains the donation process and addresses common concerns people have regarding organ donation.

Ask the Doctors: Kidney Transplant

Director of Kidney and Pancreatic Transplantation at the Washington University and Barnes-Jewish Transplant Center Jason Wellen, MD, MBA, answers some of the most frequently asked questions about kidney transplant.

Colorectal Cancer Care

Washington University Colon and Rectal provides the highest level of care for patients with colorectal cancer.

Transforming Lives with Weight Loss Surgery

Bariatric surgeon Francesca Dimou, MD, MS, helps people achieve their goals with weight loss surgery. Dimou describes the transformative process, offers advice and shares the story of her surgical training.

There is an Option: Treating Pancreatitis with Islet Auto-Transplant

For young people with pancreatitis, total pancreatectomy and islet auto-transplant can prevent years of chronic pain. HPB surgeon Chet Hammill, MD, MCR, explains the procedure and encourages people to learn about their options early in life.

Celebrating Big for Savannah

Meet 11-year-old Savannah and her surgeon, Baddr Shakhsheer, who restored a sense of regularity to her life at the Pediatric Colorectal Center.