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Gastrointestinal Surgery

Gastrointestinal (GI) Surgery is part of the Surgical Division and comprises two main specialties, upper gastrointestinal and lower gastrointestinal (colorectal) surgery. We see patients for both planned and emergency surgery and have a GI consultant on call at all times for emergencies.

The GI Surgery Team

Consultants – Upper GI Surgery

Mr Paul Peyser
Mr Ian Finlay
Mr Allwyn Cota
Mr Michael Clarke

Consultants – Lower GI (colorectal)

COLO 1 Team

COLO 2 Team

Mr Faux is also a general paediatric surgeon.

Consultant – General GI

Mr Siva Gopalswamy

Specialist Nurses – Colorectal Surgery

Debbie Evans
Rebecca Collins
Karen Cock
Claire Ferris
Candy Coombe

Specialist Nurses – Upper GI Surgery

Lou Maitland
Jeremy Gilbert

Divisional General Manager

Duncan Bliss

Service Lead

Lisa Duckham

Matron for Surgery

Sara Lear

Divisional Director

Mr Adam Widdison

HR Business Partner

Gillian Stratton

Clinical Admin Leads

Sue Parkyn
Katherine Weatheral

Surgical Divisional Coordinator – Medical Staffing

Deborah Cotterell

Emergency GI Rota

Twelve of the consultants in the Gastrointestinal Surgery department participate in a 1 in 12 emergency general surgery on-call rota and have an area of specialist expertise so that the department manages the care of patients with a full range of surgical problems including oesophago-gastric, bariatric, biliary, colorectal, endocrine, general abdominal and hernia surgery. Emergencies are managed in a dedicated surgical receiving unit which is not only one of the busiest in the country, seeing 5250 emergency admissions to surgery each year, but also one of the most efficient.

Undergraduate Teaching

Teaching of 3rd to 5th-year medical students from the Peninsula College of Medicine is integrated within the work of the department. Students are present for their pathway weeks, placements and Specific Study Units. Read more about undergraduate training here.

Postgraduate Training

Surgical trainees at all levels from newly qualified doctors (F1) to senior registrars are trained within the department. There are weekly foundation and core trainee training programmes. Read more about postgraduate training here.

Types of Gastrointestinal Surgery

All surgeons undertake laparoscopic and open biliary surgery. All types of open and laparoscopic hernia surgery are performed including the treatment of complex incisional herniae.

Paediatric surgery performed includes appendicectomies (laparoscopic and open), pyloromyotomies, herniotomies, and orchidopexies.

Specialist Upper Gastrointestinal surgery includes:

  • laparoscopic bariatric (weight-loss) surgery
  • oesophagectomies
  • gastric surgery
  • anti-reflux and hiatus hernia surgery
  • splenectomy
  • Hellers procedures for achalasia
  • bile duct exploration
  • benign pancreatic surgery

Colorectal Cancer Centre (Lower Gastrointestinal)

The Royal Cornwall Hospital is also a specialist colorectal cancer centre, and our specialist surgeons perform laparoscopic and open colorectal resections for both malignant and benign disease including functional bowel disease. Operations performed include:

  • Colectomies,
  • Anterior resections,
  • Stapled haemorrhoidectomy,
  • Extralevator APR (ELAPE with VRAM flap)
  • Rectopexies.

Find out more about Cancer Services at Royal Cornwall Hospitals and the support and information we offer for people affected by cancer.

Upper GI Cancer Surgery

The Royal Cornwall Hospitals Trust works alongside Derriford Hospital and the Royal Devon & Exeter Hospital to care for patients with upper gastrointestinal cancers across Devon and Cornwall. We have a multidisciplinary consultant team, with specialists in gastroenterology, surgery, oncology, radiology, and histopathology, as well as cancer nurse specialists and dietitians.

Patients who have suspected gastrointestinal cancer will come to us for a diagnosis. For patients who do have cancer, their case will be discussed by specialist surgeons from all three hospital trusts so that we can recommend the best course of action for each individual patient.

Some people will need chemotherapy to begin with, which is provided here at the Royal Cornwall Hospital.

If you do choose to have surgery, your operation will take place at our specialist centre in Plymouth, where our highly-skilled surgeons, including Paul Peyser, work. The centre offers 24/7 cover, a full range of state of the art equipment and a team of back-up staff.

After your operation, we provide further treatment, such as radiotherapy and chemotherapy and check ups, back at the Royal Cornwall Hospital.

All cancer patients will be assigned to one of our cancer nurse specialists. Your nurse will be able to answer questions, explain what to expect and help in any other way possible, such as finding accommodation or arranging travel. Find out more about Cancer Services at Royal Cornwall Hospitals and the support and information we offer for people affected by cancer.

Gastrointestinal Outpatients

General surgeons see 6,000 new and 9,000 follow up patients in outpatient clinics across the county, at West Cornwall, St Michael’s, Royal Cornwall, Falmouth, Newquay, East Cornwall and Penrice Hospitals. The surgical consultants and their teams of doctors work closely with radiologists, oncologists, pathologists, nurse specialists, and others within multi-disciplinary teams.