Endocrine Surgery

Dr. Alfredo Santillan-Gomez is a recognized leader in endocrine surgery not only in the San Antonio area, but across the country. He is considered a High Volume Thyroid Surgeon in the San Antonio area with more than 100 thyroid surgeries performed per year. He is a member of the prestigious American Association of Endocrine Surgery and the American Head and Neck Society.

Why see a High Volume Thyroid/Parathyroid Surgeon?

  • The American College of Surgeons published study results in 2015 that indicates, “Patients undergoing a total thyroidectomy (removal of the thyroid) are 34% less likely to experience complications if their surgeon performs at least 25 cases per year of this operation.”

  • The American Thyroid Association recommends you see a high volume endocrine surgeon for a lower risk of complications.

Conditions Treated by an Endocrine Surgeon

In many cases patients are diagnosed by a primary care physician or an endocrinologist who will then refer to Dr. Alfredo Santillan-Gomez for surgery. Some of the conditions he performs surgery for most often include:

Thyroid Conditions:

  • Thyroid Cancer - typically requires removal of part or all of the thyroid, also called a partial or total thyroidectomy. This may also include removal of the lymph nodes nearby to determine whether the cancer has spread to the lymphatic system (central node dissection and lateral neck dissection).

  • Thyroid Nodules - biopsy and/or removal of a growth on the thyroid.

  • Graves Disease / Hyperthyroidism.

  • Goiter - removal of the growth.

Parathyroid Conditions:

Primary hyperparathyroidism (PHP) is often treated with minimally invasive parathyroidectomy surgery. This is the removal of the parathyroid glands. Surgery typically results in higher bone density and an improved quality of life up to 10 years later.

Minimally Invasive Parathyroidectomy

  • What is a Minimally Invasive Parathyroidectomy? Minimally Invasive Parathyroidectomy has become the standard method of operation for the parathyroid glands. Dr. Santillan is a major proponent of minimally invasive parathyroidectomy given the advantages of smaller incision and scar, less anesthesia, faster recovery and done as an outpatient allowing the patient to go home same day and resume normal activities.

Why See an Expert Parathyroid Surgeon?

  • Parathyroid surgery is complex and requires a high volume surgeon to acquire expertise to obtain the best results for cure. Dr. Santillan is a well known endocrine surgeon in South Texas who performs minimally invasive parathryoidectomy as a regular part of his practice. As an Associate Professor of Surgery in the division of Surgical Oncology and Endocrine Surgery at University of Texas since 2009, he was able to develop his expertise by being a high volume parathyroid surgeon until today. Because hyperparathyroidism is a rare condition, many surgeons do not have the opportunity to develop this expertise.

Adrenal Conditions:

Adrenal tumors -- cancerous or benign -- can often be removed through minimally invasive laparoscopic or robotic surgery. This results in a shorter recovery period for the patient.