Cancers of the head and neck area are increasingly common. It can be a difficult experience for patients who face several questions. In many cases, patients suffer from information overload after consulting with head/neck surgeons, radiation oncologists and medical oncologists. Dr. Marco Ellis’ approach is to guide you through your diagnosis and help you understand the scope of the defect and creative solutions to rebuild the affected areas.
Why Choose Dr. Ellis for Head and Neck Reconstruction
As one of Chicago’s top reconstructive surgeons, Dr. Ellis has unique experience in craniofacial surgery and microsurgery, which enables him to treat the most challenging conditions. He has both a clinical and academic interest in managing patients from their first presentation to rehabilitation. Invasive tumors require multidisciplinary treatment to optimize patients’ outcomes. Dr. Ellis regularly interfaces with members in the departments of otolaryngology (ENT), oral surgery, surgical oncology, radiation oncology, medical oncology and speech pathology.
Dr. Ellis has published articles and spoken nationally about his experience treating patients with head and neck cancers. He has a unique practice that is dedicated to this unique patient population. Dr. Ellis has performed over 500 cancer-based operations and almost half have required microsurgical techniques. He is experienced with resurfacing of large defects and incorporation of bone to add stability to the facial skeleton.
Planning Head and Neck Reconstruction
Dr. Ellis focuses on restoring function and form for head/neck cancer patients. He combines digital photography, 3D imaging and traditional CT/MRI scans to identify state-of-the-art solutions. It is not uncommon for Dr. Ellis to consult with patients and their family multiple times before surgery to counsel them on their options and guide them through the perioperative phases.
What Does Head and Neck Reconstruction Entail?
Head/neck cancer is an all-encompassing term that can involve the scalp, forehead, cheek, nose, eyelids, ears, jaw, chin, tongue, palate, upper airway and esophagus. Tumors that affect these regions typically require excision and reconstruction. Dr. Ellis typically performs these procedures in a two-team fashion, which allows him to focus on reconstruction and the cancer surgeon to dedicate time on tumor removal.
It is not uncommon for patients to require small revision procedures after the major reconstruction to enhance their appearance. Similarly, Dr. Ellis treats patients who have already undergone surgery at another hospital and have persistent problems. Secondary or revision surgery can range from simple outpatient procedures to complete overhaul of the previous reconstruction. There may be adjustments to eating, swallowing, speaking and breathing after surgery. Dr. Ellis and his team will provide detailed instructions for you to follow during the recovery phase.