Turkey, stuffing and all the trimmings are typically found in abundance around the Thanksgiving holiday. These indulgences are a time-honored part of the American tradition. However, millions of people will suffer heartburn after having a first, second—and even third—portion of their favorite foods. A signature burning sensation in the chest, behind the breastbone and in the middle of the abdomen, is a common occurrence many wish they did not associate so closely with holiday celebrations.

The occasional bout of heartburn shouldn’t be cause for major alarm. However, if the issue persists, happening two or more times a week, it could be a sign of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).

This week marks the 21st annual GERD Awareness Week (November 22 – 28). The International Foundation for Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders (IFFGD) first designated GERD Awareness Week in 1999 to help raise public awareness of the disorder.

 

What is GERD?

The United States National Library of Medicine defines GERD as “a condition in which stomach contents (food or liquid) regularly leak backwards from the stomach into the esophagus (the tube from the mouth to the stomach).”

This happens when the muscle that serves as the “door” to the stomach, called the lower esophageal sphincter, becomes weak or damaged and can no longer close properly.

 

Symptoms of GERD

Although frequent heartburn is GERD’s most recognizable symptom, there are others that can be present:

  • Regurgitation
  • Pain or discomfort in the chest
  • Cough
  • Chronic sore throat
  • Dysphagia (feeling like food is sticking in the throat)
  • Difficulty or pain when swallowing
  • Frequent belching
  • An acidic or sour after taste in the mouth
  • Hoarseness in the morning

 

Complications

Left untreated, GERD can cause serious medical conditions, including esophagitis, ulcers, lung inflammation and erosion of the teeth. Ten percent of people with chronic symptoms of GERD develop Barrett’s esophagus, an abnormal change in the lining of the esophagus linked to a potential increased risk of developing esophageal cancer.

While it accounts for just one percent of cancers diagnosed in the United States, esophageal cancer  has grown more than 400 percent in incidence in the past 40 years and is one of the most lethal types of cancers. A Stage IV diagnosis comes with a small survival rate of just 5 percent.

 

 

Treatment

If you believe you, or a loved one, may possibly be suffering from GERD, the first step is to consult with a GI physician to receive an accurate diagnosis.

Lifestyle changes can help manage the symptoms of GERD, and over-the-counter medications are useful for temporary relief, but they won’t prevent regurgitation or allow the esophagus to heal.

For about 30 percent of GERD sufferers, symptoms get worse despite the use of medication and implementation of lifestyle changes. Those patients should consider whether surgical intervention is an option for them.

Surgical Associates treats GERD through fundoplication and the LINX Reflux Management System.

 

Fundoplication

Fundoplication surgery is most often used to treat gastric reflux caused in part by a hiatal hernia, which is when part of the stomach pokes into the chest cavity.

During fundoplication surgery, the top of the stomach is wrapped around the lower portion of the esophagus and sewn into place. This repairs the natural anti-reflux barrier, preventing stomach contents from ending back in the esophagus.

Fundoplication surgery has been shown to provide long-term relief of gastric reflux symptoms in approximately 87 percent of patients.

 

LINX Reflux Management System

Unlike other procedures used in the treatment of gastric reflux, the LINX system does not include alteration of the stomach. Implanted laparoscopically, it consists of a small a band of magnetized titanium beads that wrap around the base of the esophagus. The band stops stomach acid from reaching the esophagus, but can expand and contract for easy swallowing.

The LINX system is a permanent, drug-free solution that can help patients return to a normal lifestyle unencumbered by GERD.

Long-Term Benefits of LINX

  • EASES symptoms of heartburn and regurgitation
  • LESSENS instances of acid exposure to the esophagus
  • REDUCES or ELIMINATES the need for gastric reflux medications

 

Enjoy the holidays and every day

Don’t let another holiday season go by while suffering from GERD. Contact the GERD specialists at Surgical Associates today to get back to living a life free from heartburn!

Appointments can be made by calling 715-847-2022 or upon referral from a primary care provider.

For more information about Surgical Associates’ fundoplication procedure or LINX Reflux Management System, click here.

New location to serve as primary clinic for breast surgery team; general surgeons; and Elevé MedSpa, Plastic Surgery and Vitality

 

Surgical Associates, S.C. is thrilled to announce the opening of its second office location in Wausau. Located at 2606 Stewart Ave., the new facility offers patients in North Central Wisconsin a variety of pre- and post-procedure care in the surgical and aesthetic fields, including:

 

Elevé MedSpa, Plastic Surgery and Vitality

Elevé MedSpa, Plastic Surgery and Vitality, a division of Surgical Associates, is committed to providing the most effective and proven plastic surgery, aesthetic and wellness treatments, from CoolSculpting® non-invasive fat reduction to laser skin rejuvenation.

 

Breast Surgery and Surgical Associates’ High-Risk Breast Screening Clinic

Surgical Associates’ breast surgery team manages all concerns related to the breast, cancer and non-cancerous. The team also provides detailed breast risk assessments for people who may have an increased risk for developing breast cancer.

 

General Surgery

The 2606 Stewart Ave. office will become the primary clinic for many of Surgical Associates’ general surgeons. The move will not affect the outreach services being provided at other Surgical Associates clinic locations throughout North Central Wisconsin.

 

“The addition of new surgeons, providers and our new medspa and plastic surgery division, Elevé, required additional clinic space to effectively serve our patients,” Surgical Associates CEO Mike Murphy explained.

 

Surgical Associates’ new 18,000-square-foot clinic contains 23 exam rooms as well as two high-end procedure rooms for advanced, office-based surgery. Doctors and providers will begin seeing patients at the 2606 Stewart Ave. location Monday, Nov. 16, 2020. The office will be open from 7:00 AM to 5:00 PM Monday through Friday.

 

“With 11 clinic locations throughout North Central Wisconsin and Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, Surgical Associates strives to ensure patients can be treated close to home,” said Murphy. “This new space allows us to expand our community- and patient-focused model of care and provide additional services to patients throughout the Wausau area.”

 

Effective November 16: The following individuals will be primarily located at 2606 Stewart Ave., Wausau:

1st Floor – Elevé staff: Dr. Alexey Markelov, Julie Kubat, Master Aesthetician; Surgical Associates’ breast surgery team: Dr. Stroede and Jessica Gaffaney, PA-C

2nd Floor – General surgery providers: Dr. Steven Weiland, Dr. Gary Sweet, Dr. William Wilfley, Dr. Jennine Larson, Dr. Jeremy Olson, Dr. Robert Brebrick, Sara Olson, NP, and Helen Walsh, APNP

 

For more information, visit https://sawisconsin.com/ or call 715-847-2022 to request an appointment.

 

While Surgical Associates is dedicated to providing the safest possible clinic environment for its patients, it is also maximizing the use of telehealth technology to prevent the spread of COVID-19. All Surgical Associates surgeons are available to patients via in-person or video appointments.

 


About Surgical Associates, S.C.:

Surgical Associates, S.C. is a multispecialty, independent surgical practice providing tertiary-level surgical care at Aspirus Wausau Hospital. General and acute care surgery, vascular surgery, breast surgery, bariatric surgery, and plastic surgery are among the surgical services offered at Surgical Associates. The practice provides outreach clinic and surgical services to several North Central Wisconsin communities, including Antigo, Medford, Merrill, Rhinelander, Stevens Point, Wisconsin Rapids, Woodruff as well as Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. Surgical Associates is a proud member of Aspirus Network Inc.

Practice’s breast and plastic surgery teams guide patients through risk assessment, surgery, reconstruction and recovery

Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer among women in Wisconsin, accounting for nearly one-third of their cancer diagnoses. While the disease has many risk factors, it can develop in any woman regardless of age or overall health.

Medical advances are allowing detection of breast cancer at earlier stages, opening up the availability of less-invasive procedures. Surgery remains the most common treatment for breast cancer. Options can vary based on the severity and spread of the disease.

 

Surgical Associates’ Approach to Breast Cancer Surgery

Surgical Associates’ breast cancer surgery team provides personalized care using a collaborative, team-based approach that utilizes up-to-date technology and treatment guidelines. Dr. Cecilia Stroede, Surgical Associates’ fellowship-trained breast surgeon and director of Aspirus Breast Program, works closely with patients’ physicians, Surgical Associates’ own plastic surgery team, as well as experienced radiologists, pathologists, medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, and genetic counselors.

Surgical Associates provides continuous care throughout a patient’s entire journey—from risk assessment and surgery to reconstruction, recovery and survivorship. Guidance and support are offered every step of the way.

Dr. Stroede, double board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Alexey Markelov and the other care providers meet regularly to review and develop treatment strategies for all new patients with breast cancer. Their focus always centers on the individual needs of every patient.

With both the breast and plastic surgery teams working together within the same surgical practice, patients are guided efficiently through treatment. Multiple specialists are often available during a single visit.

Surgical Associates offers a full spectrum of surgical procedures to treat breast cancer. Operations include:

  • Lumpectomy (also called breast-conserving surgery or partial mastectomy)
  • Mastectomy
  • Sentinel lymph node biopsy
  • Axillary lymph node dissection
  • Breast reconstruction
  • Oncoplastic surgery

 

Breast Reconstruction at Surgical Associates

Reconstruction is often an important part of recovery following breast cancer surgery. The procedure recreates all or part of the breast that was surgically removed, restoring a natural shape. Reconstruction can be performed using implants (silicone or saline) or a patient’s own tissue.

Working in collaboration, Dr. Stroede and Dr. Markelov provide patients with options to complete breast reconstruction either at the time of the mastectomy or as a separate surgery at a later date. The choice to have immediate versus delayed reconstruction depends on the stage of the cancer, overall health and age of the patient, treatments needed after the surgery, and patient’s preference. If chemotherapy or radiation of the chest is required, reconstruction may be delayed so that the breast may heal unimpaired.

When a lumpectomy, mastectomy or double mastectomy is recommended, Dr. Markelov helps patients better understand their reconstruction options and takes an active role in the breast cancer treatment plan.

 

Meet the Doctors

Cecilia Stroede M.D., F.A.C.S.

Alexey Markelov M.D.

 

“Dr. Stroede is the most wonderful doctor I’ve ever had. She listens.”

“Dr. Markelov and everyone at Surgical Associates were extremely kind and professional. I’m so grateful for all the prompt help and attention I was given during my appointments.”

 

Surgical Associates High Risk Breast Screening Clinic

Surgical Associates now offers a complete breast cancer risk evaluation for individuals who may be at higher risk of developing the disease. If a patient is found to have an increased risk based on personal and family history, Surgical Associates’ breast cancer team will develop a customized, long-term screening and risk-reduction plan.

 

Accreditations

 

Learn More

Working as a team, Surgical Associates’ breast cancer and plastic surgery providers are dedicated to helping patients beat breast cancer and maintain active and fulfilling lives. If you would like to learn more about Surgical Associates’ various breast surgery and reconstruction options, call 715-847-2022. Surgical Associates is currently offering in-person and telehealth visits.

 

Surgical Associates remains dedicated to keeping patients, their families and its medical staff safe and healthy amid the rapidly-evolving COVID-19 pandemic. To limit the exposure risk of everyone involved, Surgical Associates is maximizing the use of telehealth technology to keep patients home and prevent the spread of the virus.

To maintain patients’ quality of life as much as possible, all Surgical Associates surgeons are available to patients via video appointments.

Using Surgical Associates’ telehealth services, a patient can connect with his or her surgeon through a smartphone, tablet or computer and experience a face-to-face, real-time conversation. Similar to Skype or FaceTime, telehealth includes added security measures to protect a patient’s privacy. Discussions about care and treatment options are handled just like an in-person visit.

Telehealth appointments allow patients to be safe at home without losing access to the personable, patient-focused care at Surgical Associates.

 

Meeting a Surgical Associates surgeon online is easy and convenient.

  • No download is required: Patients don’t need to create an account or download software. All that’s required is a computer, phone or smart device with a camera, microphone and internet connection.
  • The process is simple: After scheduling a telehealth visit, patients will be sent a hyperlink to enter Surgical Associates’ virtual waiting room at the time of their appointment. A button linked to the virtual waiting room can also be found on the Surgical Associates website homepage.

 

All video appointments are private and secure. Data is encrypted, sessions are anonymous and a patient’s information isn’t stored by the website. The entire process adheres to HIPAA, PIPEDA and GDPR data privacy requirements.

To request a telehealth appointment, call Surgical Associates at 1-888-278-3795.

 

Please note:

  • Telehealth visits are ONLY a viable option for patients who are medically stable and do not require immediate assistance.
  • Telehealth visits are considered a regular health care service and will cost the same as a traditional visit. In most cases, an appointment should be billable to a patient’s health insurance provider without issue.

 


About Surgical Associates, S.C.:

Surgical Associates, S.C. is a multispecialty, independent surgical practice providing tertiary-level surgical care at Aspirus Wausau HospitalGeneral and acute care surgery, vascular surgerybreast surgerybariatric surgery, and plastic surgery are among the surgical services offered at Surgical Associates. The practice provides outreach clinic and surgical services to several Northcentral Wisconsin communities, including Antigo, Medford, Merrill, Rhinelander, Stevens Point, Wisconsin Rapids, Woodruff as well as Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.

 

Surgical Associates remains dedicated to our community and patients in Wausau and throughout the Region. Our patients, their families, and our employees’ safety remain the focus of our practice throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. We are committed to keeping you and your loved ones safe and healthy which is why we had added additional measures to our existing processes. We have implemented the following and ask that you partner with us in helping reduce the spread of infectious disease:

  • We continue to make this a comfortable experience as you have your procedure with us. However, due to COVID-19 we have had to adjust our visitor policy as we work to keep you and your family safe.
  • When you arrive at our office one of our staff will bring you back to the procedure area.
  • Our waiting room is currently closed. Throughout the day our staff will keep your family updated.
  • Your provider will call your family following the procedure to give an update and the time to return to pick you up.
  • When your family returns, we review discharge instructions and do all educational teaching in person.

About Surgical Associates, S.C.:

Surgical Associates, S.C. is a multispecialty, independent surgical practice providing tertiary-level surgical care at Aspirus Wausau Hospital. General and acute care surgery, vascular surgery, breast surgerybariatric surgery, and plastic surgery are among the surgical services offered at Surgical Associates. The practice provides outreach clinic and surgical services to several North Central Wisconsin communities, including Antigo, Medford, Merrill, Rhinelander, Stevens Point, Wisconsin Rapids, Woodruff as well as Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. Surgical Associates is a proud member of Aspirus Network Inc.

Surgical Associates remains dedicated to our community and patients in Wausau and throughout the Region. Our patients, their families, and our employees’ safety remain the focus of our practice throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. We are committed to keeping you and your loved ones safe and healthy which is why we had added additional measures to our existing processes. We have implemented the following and ask that you partner with us in helping reduce the spread of infectious disease:

  • If you or a family member are ill or have been exposed to COVID-19, we may ask to reschedule your visit.
    • If the type of visit requires you to be seen in our clinic, you will be seen by a Provider.
  • If you feel uncomfortable coming to our clinic, doctor phone calls and telehealth are available.
  • Please wear a mask when you come to your appointment or procedure.
  • Hand sanitizer and masks are available throughout the clinic for all.
  • We continue to clean equipment and rooms between each patient and have added additional sanitation measures to all our public areas.
    • Please do not sit on a chair that may be wet. Some of the cleaning products we use may contain bleach.
  • Please come alone to your appointment and no more than 5-10 minutes before your scheduled appointment.
    • No visitors will be allowed unless the visitor is a minor or power of attorney

About Surgical Associates, S.C.:

Surgical Associates, S.C. is a multispecialty, independent surgical practice providing tertiary-level surgical care at Aspirus Wausau Hospital. General and acute care surgery, vascular surgery, breast surgerybariatric surgery, and plastic surgery are among the surgical services offered at Surgical Associates. The practice provides outreach clinic and surgical services to several North Central Wisconsin communities, including Antigo, Medford, Merrill, Rhinelander, Stevens Point, Wisconsin Rapids, Woodruff as well as Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. Surgical Associates is a proud member of Aspirus Network Inc.

Anna Wicklund, N.P., to also play key role in the development of group’s new “Longevity Clinic”

 

WAUSAU, WI – Surgical Associates, S.C. is thrilled to announce the addition of Anna Wicklund, N.P., to its Aesthetics/Plastic Surgery team. Wicklund has been specializing in aesthetics and facial rejuvenation in North Central Wisconsin for three years, treating patients with Botox injections and other cosmetic care.

Wicklund joins plastic surgeon Dr. Alexey Markelov and aesthetician Julie Kubat of Surgical Associates and Elevé MedSpa, expanding the reach of her services to more local communities throughout North Central Wisconsin. In addition to Stevens Point, Wisconsin Rapids and Rhinelander, Wicklund will be seeing patients every Friday at Aspirus Woodruff Clinic, ready to care for those starting their weekend “up north.”

“While I specialize in plastic and reconstructive surgery as well as facial aesthetics, I enjoy treating patients holistically, ensuring their mind, body and soul are optimized to their fullest potential,” explained Wicklund. “Helping patients achieve an inner sense of well-being, increase self-esteem and improve their quality of life are priorities for me.”

Wicklund earned her bachelor’s of science degree in nursing at Viterbo University in La Crosse, WI and her master’s of science degree in nursing, family nurse practitioner at Concordia University Wisconsin in Mequon, WI.  She is an active member of the Wisconsin Society of Plastic Surgeons, American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, American Association of Nurse Practitioners, American Association of Critical-Care Nurses, and International Society of Plastic and Aesthetic Nurses.

Wicklund will also work closely with the surgeons at Surgical Associates to develop a “Longevity Clinic” in Wausau to help promote maximum physical and mental well-being among patients. The program includes a personal assessment that reveals a patient’s “biologic age,” a unique approach to health care that will be the first of its kind in the Wausau region. Surgical Associates plans to open the clinic to patients within the next few months.

“I am passionate about educating and empowering patients to make informed decisions to best meet their individualized health care goals—from improving their current health, to managing chronic disease, to preventing future ailments entirely,” said Wicklund.

To learn more about nurse practitioner Anna Wicklund, visit sawisconsin.com. To schedule a consult or treatment, call 715-847-2022.

 

About Surgical Associates, S.C.:

Surgical Associates, S.C. is a multispecialty, independent surgical practice providing tertiary-level surgical care at Aspirus Wausau Hospital. General and acute care surgery, vascular surgery, breast surgery, bariatric surgery, and plastic surgery are among the surgical services offered at Surgical Associates. The practice provides outreach clinic and surgical services to several North Central Wisconsin communities, including Antigo, Medford, Merrill, Rhinelander, Stevens Point, Wisconsin Rapids, Woodruff as well as Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. Surgical Associates is a proud member of Aspirus Network Inc.

 

About Elevé MedSpa:

Inspired and supported by established professionals in the medical industry, Elevé MedSpa is committed to providing the most effective and trusted non-surgical cosmetic treatments that help patients achieve their personal best. From CoolSculpting, a non-invasive fat-reduction procedure, to skin rejuvenation, Elevé delivers age-defying radiance at any stage of life. The MedSpa works with patients to achieve their goals while keeping comfort its top priority. For more information, visit https://elevemedspa.com/

 

 

Surgical Associates remains dedicated to keeping patients, their families and its medical staff safe and healthy amid the rapidly-evolving COVID-19 pandemic. To limit the exposure risk of everyone involved, Surgical Associates is maximizing the use of telehealth technology to keep patients home and prevent the spread of the virus.

To maintain patients’ quality of life as much as possible, all Surgical Associates surgeons will be available to patients via video appointments.

Using Surgical Associates’ telehealth services, a patient can connect with his or her surgeon through a smartphone, tablet or computer and experience a face-to-face, real-time conversation. Similar to Skype or FaceTime, telehealth includes added security measures to protect a patient’s privacy. Discussions about care and treatment options are handled just like an in-person visit.

Telehealth appointments allow patients to follow “Stay at Home” orders in Wisconsin and Michigan without losing access to the personable, patient-focused care at Surgical Associates.

 

Meeting a Surgical Associates surgeon online is easy and convenient.

  • No download is required: Patients don’t need to create an account or download software. All that’s required is a computer, phone or smart device with a camera, microphone and internet connection.
  • The process is simple: After scheduling a telehealth visit, patients will be sent a hyperlink to enter Surgical Associates’ virtual waiting room at the time of their appointment. A button linked to the virtual waiting room can also be found on the Surgical Associates website homepage.

 

All video appointments are private and secure. Data is encrypted, sessions are anonymous and a patient’s information isn’t stored by the website. The entire process adheres to HIPAA, PIPEDA and GDPR data privacy requirements.

To request a telehealth appointment, call Surgical Associates at 1-888-278-3795.

 

Please note:

  • Telehealth visits are ONLY a viable option for patients who are medically stable and do not require immediate assistance.
  • Telehealth visits are considered a regular health care service and will cost the same as a traditional visit. In most cases, an appointment should be billable to a patient’s health insurance provider without issue.

 


About Surgical Associates, S.C.:

Surgical Associates, S.C. is a multispecialty, independent surgical practice providing tertiary-level surgical care at Aspirus Wausau Hospital. General and acute care surgery, vascular surgery, breast surgery, bariatric surgery, and plastic surgery are among the surgical services offered at Surgical Associates. The practice provides outreach clinic and surgical services to several Northcentral Wisconsin communities, including Antigo, Medford, Merrill, Rhinelander, Stevens Point, Wisconsin Rapids, Woodruff as well as Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.

 

Notice to Patients

PLEASE NOTE CHANGE TO OUR VISITATION POLICY, EFFECTIVE THURSDAY, MARCH 19

To help ensure the safety of our patients, staff, and visitors during the COVID-19 outbreak, effective Thursday, March 19, no visitors will be allowed with patients unless the visitor is a minor or power of attorney.

Our team is continually monitoring the coronavirus situation throughout the region and is committed to keeping our doors open and providing exceptional care to our patients.

Surgical Associates S.C.

2400 Pine Ridge Blvd
Wausau, WI 54401
Phone: 715.847.2022

 

 

Notice to Patients

A letter to our patients and community:

Surgical Associates remains dedicated to our community and patients in Wausau and throughout the Region. Our patients and their families remain the focus of our practice throughout the evolving COVID-19 pandemic. We are committed to keeping you and your loved ones safe and healthy which is why we have implemented additional measures along with our existing processes. Our focus is reducing the spread of infectious disease through these measures:

  • We will be calling our patients regarding potential illness in the home.
    • If you or a family member are ill, depending on the symptoms and type of appointment we may ask to reschedule if visit is non-urgent.
    • If the type of visit requires you to be seen in our clinic, you will be seen by a Provider.
    • If there is an illness in your household, an option may be a Doctor phone call.
  • If you arrive at our clinic with symptoms, please inform our receptionist we will ask you to put on a mask.
  • If you are seen in the clinic and need follow-up appointments or surgeries, you will be called by one of our schedulers within 24 hours.
  • We continue to clean equipment and rooms between each patient and have added additional sanitation measures to all our public areas. The entire clinic will periodically be getting a special cleaning.
  • We also ask that when come to your visit you are accompanied by no more than one person.
  • Staff continues to take appropriate hygiene precautions.
  • Masks and hand sanitizer continue to be available throughout the clinic for all.

Our team is continually monitoring the Coronavirus situation throughout the region and are committed to keeping our doors open and providing exceptional care to our patients.

 

Surgical Associates S.C.

2400 Pine Ridge Blvd
Wausau, WI 54401
Phone: 715.847.2022