Training tomorrow’s colorectal surgeons keeps us on the leading edge.

Established in 2008 through a partnership among Indiana University School of Medicine, Franciscan St. Francis Health and Kendrick, the Colon and Rectal Residency Program allows the Kendrick surgeons to teach future surgeons on the latest techniques. By leading this training program, our surgeons stay at the forefront of colorectal surgery. Our surgeons have been the first in the state to perform innovative treatments and less invasive surgical techniques and continue to be involved in national surgical research projects. We are constantly looking for new ways to improve patient care and outcomes through the Innovative treatment of colon and rectal cancer.

Laparoscopic Surgery
At the Kendrick Colon and Rectal Center, more than 70 percent of colon and rectal cancer surgery is performed laparoscopically, compared to less than 30 percent nationally. As a result, our patients lengths of stay are some of the lowest in the nation with an average of 2 to 4 days compared to 8 days nationally.

Our surgeons also perform single incision laparoscopy, the most recent breakthrough in laparoscopic colon surgery. Instead of one large incision or multiple smaller ones, this technique involves one single, small incision, which is hidden through the navel.

daVinci Robotic Surgery
Robotic surgery is a recent advancement in laparoscopic surgery for rectal cancer. Due to the limited space in the pelvis it is difficult to perform rectal surgery with laparoscopy. Using the daVinci robotic surgery system, our surgeons perform complex rectal cancer procedures with unmatched precision, dexterity and control. The da Vinci system provides excellent 3-D views of the structures in the pelvis improving the ability of the surgeon to remove cancer and preserve the nerves that control bladder and sexual function.

At the Kendrick Colon and Rectal Center, Drs. Barry Melbert, Ben Tsai, Tobi Reidy and Dipen Maun perform daVinci surgery. Dr. Maun performed the first daVinci low anterior resection for cancer in Indiana. Nationally, only about 3 percent of rectal cancer surgeries are performed with the daVinci.

Transanal Endoscopic Microsurgery (TEM) for Treatment of Early Rectal Cancers
Transanal Endoscopic Microsurgery (TEM) is a minimally invasive surgical technique for diseases in the mid and upper rectum. The procedure is performed through the anus and in the rectum without having to make an incision through the abdomen. TEM is utilized to remove large polyps and small cancers that have not yet invaded into the muscle layer of the bowel.

Since there is no abdominal incision there is minimal pain and a much faster recovery time. In fact, most patients are sent home the same day as the surgery and are able to return to normal activities usually in 1 to 2 weeks after surgery versus 5 to 6 weeks after abdominal surgery. The risk of complications, such as infections and hernias, is also much lower with TEM than with abdominal surgery.

Drs. Dipen Maun, Tobi Reidy and Ben Tsai are four of only a few surgeons in Indiana performing this procedure. Dr. Tsai recently was the lead author in a study on TEM that was published in the prestigious Diseases of the Colon and Rectum.