Major highlights have been the rapid growth of the clinical programs with expansion of both faculty and practice sites and an increase in minimally invasive surgery. In recent years, a major trend in pediatric, as in adult surgery, has been a shift toward less invasive operations. Dr. Tom Sato and Keith Oldham have been at the forefront of this trend nationally. The majority of Nissen fundoplications are now performed laparoscopically. In addition, complex colorectal procedures are now being performed with laparoscopic assistance. The Pediatric Surgery Service has developed two pediatric surgery teams at the Children's Hospital of Wisconsin with more focus on pediatric critical care. Pediatric Surgery was instrumental in successfully obtaining Level I trauma certification for the Children's Hospital of Wisconsin from the American College of Surgeons.
Clinical activities cover the spectrum of general and thoracic surgical problems in infants and children, including trauma, critical care, burns, ECMO, neonatal surgery, surgical oncology, non-cardiac thoracic surgery, advanced minimally invasive surgery and general and abdominal surgery. Ambulatory programs include daily pediatric surgery faculty clinics with residents and medical students; a weekly multidisciplinary burn clinic, directed by Tom Sato, MD; and a long-term outcomes clinic directed by John Aiken, MD. These clinics provide unique opportunities to evaluate patients both before and after their surgical care. This follow-up is of particular value for children with complex congenital anomalies who have long-term needs. Ambulatory and inpatient surgical procedures are performed virtually every day, with approximately 3,500 procedures done annually. The pediatric surgical faculty conduct most of their clinical practice at Children's Hospital of Wisconsin but also have appointments and limited activity at Froedtert Hospital, Waukesha Hospital, St. Joseph's Hospital and Sinai Samaritan Hospital. Four physician assistants and three nurse clinicians supplement the physicians.
In the area of clinical research, Dr. Oldham directed the American Pediatric Surgical Association's federally funded national trauma outcomes research effort. Drs. Tom Sato and Marjorie Arca lead the Division of Pediatric Surgery clinical outcomes research effort. Dr. John Aiken serves as Children's Hospital of Wisconsin's General Pediatric Surgery Section Chief. A number of research protocols are in place or under development. These include local protocols as well as participants in a number of multicenter national trials.