Head and Neck Surgery

Dr Eva Wong is a Head & Neck Surgeon and Surgical Oncologist at Westmead Hospital. She is a staff specialist in the Crown Princess Mary Westmead Cancer Care Centre and Visiting Medical Officer at Blacktown, Westmead Private and Norwest Private Hospitals. She also participates in the acute surgical and trauma care roster at Westmead and Blacktown Hospitals.

Dr Wong specialises in the following head and neck surgical procedures.

Oral Surgery (Dentoalveolar Surgery)

Oral surgery is surgery in the mouth to remove an abnormal growth. It can be benign (non-cancerous) or malignant (cancer).  It may involve the removal of a growth from the following:

  • Tongue
  • Gum (Gingivae)
  • Jaw bone
  • Palate
  • Salivary gland

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Thyroid (Thyroidectomy)

Thyroidectomy is the removal of all or part of the thyroid gland. The thyroid gland is a butterfly shaped gland located at the front of the neck. It produces hormones that regulates metabolism.
Thyroidectomy may be recommended for a number of conditions:

  • Cancer - Once thyroid cancer has been diagnosed from a biopsy, removing part or all of the thyroid gland will be the treatment of choice. Surrounding lymph nodes may need to be removed during the same operation depending on the size of the cancer. Occasionally radioactive iodine treatment is offered after surgery depending on the final pathology result
  • Enlargement (Multinodular Goitre) - Removing part or the entire gland may be a treatment option if the enlarged gland causes difficulty in breathing and/or swallowing.
  • Overactive thyroid ( Hyperthyroidism/Graves’ disease) - In these conditions, the thyroid gland produces too much hormones. It can be treated by medication, radioactive iodine or surgery. Often surgery is recommended if you have problems with antithyroid medication and/or unsuitable for radioactive iodine treatment.

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Parathyroid gland (Parathyroidectomy)

Parathyroidectomy is surgery to remove enlarged parathyroid gland(s). We generally have four parathyroid glands which are located behind the thyroid gland in the neck. It is responsible for regulating calcium level in the blood.

Parathyroidectomy may be recommended for a number of conditions:

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Salivary gland surgery

There are 3 paired major and numerous minor salivary glands. The major glands are the parotid, submandibular and sublingual salivary glands. They are situated in front of the ear, under the lower jaw and under the tongue respectively. They can be affected by various disease processes. Surgery is recommended in a number of circumstances:

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Parotidectomy

Parotidectomy is the surgical removal of part of the parotid salivary gland. The operation is performed under general anaesthesia. During the procedure, a skin incision will be made in front of the ear and down to the neck. In most cases, the cut will be along the skin crease to minimise the scar. The affected portion of the gland will be removed aiming to preserve the facial nerve which sits between two layers of the gland. Its preservation is important as it controls the muscles of the face. At the end of the operation, a drain will be placed through the wound. You can eat and drink after the operation. Most patients will stay between 1-2 days in the hospital and be able to return to work in 2 weeks.

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Submandibular gland excision

Submandibular gland excision is the removal of the gland under the lower jaw. Under general anaesthesia, a 4-5 cm skin incision is made on the side of the neck below the jaw. The operation will take about an hour. You will be able to eat and drink afterwards. Most patient can go home on the same day and return to work within 2 weeks.

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