Surgical Oncology | Cancer

Surgical Oncology

You'll receive expert, compassionate care from nationally recognized surgeons with expertise in your specific condition.

Medically reviewed on Oct. 05, 2023.

Cancer surgeon working on patient in surgery room.

Specialized Team-Based Surgical Care

Surgical oncology focuses on the surgical treatment of cancer. This includes biopsies to examine a small piece of tissue for cancer and removing cancerous tumors.

Our board-certified surgeons have specialized training in all areas of surgical oncology. Our teams of surgeons, medical oncologists, radiation oncologists and plastic surgeons tailor your care to your specific type of cancer. You’ll receive the most advanced care available based on leading scientific knowledge.

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Surgical Oncology Specialty Areas

UC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center offers several specialties within surgical oncology. Each specialty focuses on a specific type of cancer.

Eye Cancer Surgery

Our eye cancer procedures focus on preserving your sight, improving your quality of life, and preventing cancer from spreading.

Gynecologic Oncology Surgery

We diagnose and treat female reproductive system (gynecologic) cancers that affect your cervix, ovaries, uterus and vulva. Our gynecologic surgical oncologists offer minimally invasive procedures, including robotic-assisted laparoscopy.

Neurological Oncology Surgery

The neurological oncology team uses advanced technologies and procedures to help you overcome brain and neurological cancers. These include computer-generated, image-guided surgical navigation.

Orthopaedic Oncology Surgery

Our orthopaedic musculoskeletal oncology service treats noncancerous and cancerous tumors in your bones and soft tissue. We offer limb-sparing and reconstructive procedures.

Otolaryngology/Head and Neck Oncology Surgery

The head and neck oncology team provides tumor removal and reconstructive surgeries for your head and neck. This includes your mouth, voice box (larynx), throat, thyroid and other structures.

Thoracic Oncology Surgery

Our thoracic oncology program is a national and international center of excellence. We treat conditions including lung cancer, mesothelioma, esophageal cancer and thymoma.

Urologic Oncology Surgery

The urologic oncology team has expertise in minimally invasive and robotic-assisted surgery. We treat cancers that affect your prostate, bladder, kidneys and testicles.

Request an Appointment

Our cancer specialists provide thorough evaluations and personalized treatment plans. Learn more about how to make an appointment at UC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center.



UC Davis Health Referring Physicians

For providers in UC Davis Medical Group or our Cancer Care Network

External Referring Physicians

For providers who are external clinicians

Preparing for Surgical Oncology Treatment

There are many types of cancer surgery. Your preparation will depend on the type of procedure you need. Some surgeries, like biopsies, may require a local anesthetic and no hospital stay. Other procedures may need general anesthesia and hospitalization. We will provide instructions for you to prepare for your surgery.

  • Health care team talking with male patient in hospital.


    Our team will discuss the details of your procedure with you. We will put an IV into your arm to receive fluids and medications if your surgery requires general anesthesia.

  • Cancer surgeon performing surgery on patient.

    During Surgery

    We give you a medication in your IV that puts you into a deep sleep if your procedure requires general anesthesia. You will not be awake or feel pain during your surgery. Your anesthesiologist will monitor your blood pressure, heart rate and oxygen levels throughout your procedure.

  • Man sitting on the edge of his hospital bed after surgery.


    Your provider will give you recovery instructions after your procedure. Depending on your surgery, you may go home the same day or stay in the hospital for a few days.

Home Care After Surgical Oncology Treatment

Your recovery time will depend on the type of surgery you had. Follow the instructions your provider gave you after your procedure.

Rest and Recover

Your body needs rest to recover from a surgical procedure. If you had anesthesia medications during your surgery, they may stay in your system for up to 24 hours.

Keep Your Incision Clean

Practice proper wound care according to the instructions your provider gave you. Keep your incision clean and dry.

Take Medications as Prescribed

Depending on your procedure, your provider may prescribe antibiotics, pain medication, stool softeners and other medicines. Take them according to your provider’s instructions.


When to Contact Your Provider

Contact your provider if you have symptoms of infection (fever, redness or discharge from your incision). Other symptoms to watch out for include headaches, trouble breathing or continued weakness.

Awards and Recognitions
USNWR Best Hospital badge

Ranked among the nation’s best hospitals

A U.S. News & World Report best hospital in cancer, cardiology, heart & vascular surgery, diabetes & endocrinology, ENT, geriatrics, neurology & neurosurgery, obstetrics & gynecology, and pulmonology & lung surgery.

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US News & World Report best Children’s Hospital badge

Ranked among the nation’s best children’s hospitals

A U.S. News & World Report best children’s hospital in diabetes & endocrinology, nephrology, and orthopedics*. (*Together with Shriners Children’s)

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USNWR best regional hospital badge

Ranked Sacramento’s #1 hospital

Ranked Sacramento’s #1 hospital by U.S. News, and high-performing in COPD, colon cancer surgery, diabetes, heart attack, heart failure, hip fracture, hip replacement, kidney failure, leukemia, lymphoma & myeloma, lung cancer surgery, ovarian cancer surgery, pneumonia, prostate cancer surgery, stroke, TAVR, uterine cancer surgery, gastroenterology & GI surgery, and orthopedics.

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Magnet designation badge

The nation’s highest nursing honor

UC Davis Medical Center has received Magnet® recognition, the nation’s highest honor for nursing excellence.

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Chime acute badge

“Most Wired” for acute care

UC Davis Health has been recognized as a level 10 out of 10 in the Digital Health “Most Wired” program from the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHIME). The honor recognizes excellence in using technology to improve the delivery of care.

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Chime ambulatory badge

“Most Wired” for ambulatory care

UC Davis Health has been recognized as a level 10 out of 10 in the Digital Health “Most Wired” program from the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHIME). The honor recognizes excellence in using technology to improve the delivery of care.

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NCI badge

World-class cancer care

One of ~56 U.S. cancer centers designated “comprehensive” by the National Cancer Institute.

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A leader in health care equality

For the 13th consecutive year, UC Davis Medical Center has been recognized as an LGBTQ+ Healthcare Equality Leader by the educational arm of America’s largest civil rights organization.

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