Welcome to the Department of Surgery

As Chairman of the Department of Surgery, I am pleased that you want to learn more about the compassionate, comprehensive and multidisciplinary surgical care available at Rush North Shore.

Our surgeons are highly qualified and Board certified physicians who specialize in many areas, including:
  • Cardiovascular surgery including endovascular surgery
  • Thoracic surgery including minimally invasive thoracoscopy
  • Surgical oncology:breast, upper gastrointestinal, liver, pancreas, colorectal and melanoma
  • Major joint replacement
  • Minimally invasive surgery including hernia repair, splenectomy, gastroesophageal reflux, adrenalectomy, varicose veins and venous ulcers
  • Neurosurgery
  • Complex eye surgery
  • Spinal surgery
  • Sports medicine.

Through our partnership with Rush University Medical Center in Chicago, our surgeons have the opportunity to be active researchers and educators, as well as clinicians. For example, many of our surgeons participate in clinical studies through Rush and other organizations. This allows our patients to gain access to breakthrough therapies-often before the general population does.

Besides a highly trained staff and ties to a respected academic medical center, Rush North Shore offers expansive, state-of-the-art facilities, including a newly renovated ambulatory surgery unit to better serve our outpatient population.

Jose M. Velasco, MD


Cardiovascular and Vascular Surgery
A Nationally Ranked Heart Program in Your Own Community

When Rush North Shore launched its open heart surgery program in 1994, it joined the ranks of sprawling, downtown teaching hospitals that had established their own programs decades earlier.

Today, it is the teamwork of highly skilled medical specialists that has helped the program attain such success. Our board-certified and highly skilled surgeons provide state-of-the-art cardiac, vascular and thoracic surgery. They perform more than 200 open heart procedures each year with tremendous success.

Some of the procedures available from our surgeons include:

Cardiovascular Surgery

  • Heart valve replacement
  • "Beating heart" bypass surgery, also called off-pump coronary artery bypass. This is performed without a heart-lung machine and involves smaller incisions so patients can recover faster and leave the hospital sooner.
  • Traditional bypass surgery
  • A new minimally invasive treatment for abdominal aortic aneurysms
  • Other adult vascular procedures including endovascular surgery

For more information about how our heart surgery program can help you, please call 847/933-6298.


Thoracic Surgery
Physicians on staff at Rush North Shore offer an exceptional range of care to address patients unique needs including:

  • Major thoracic surgery for lung cancer and other pulmonary diseases.
  • Medistatinal tumor resection.
  • Minimally invasive thorascopic surgery.
  • Esophageal surgery.


Dental and Oral Maxillofacial Surgery
Advanced Training Makes a Difference

Dentists and oral surgeons at Rush North Shore Medical Center are specially trained in treating patients in the hospital setting.

Patients who may require dental or oral surgery while in the hospital include trauma victims or patients who need heart bypass surgery or surgery for prosthetic appliances such as knees, hips and heart valves.


General Surgery
Kinder, Gentler Surgery Helps Patients Heal Faster

Surgeons at Rush North Shore Medical Center are committed to providing state-of-the-art care that truly addresses the needs of the patient. Whenever possible, our surgeons perform minimally invasive procedures to allow patients to recover faster and return to their normal routine in less time with fewer side effects. All are members of Rush Medical College faculty.

Some of the procedures performed at Rush North Shore include:
  • Laparoscopic hernia repair
  • Advanced laparoscopic surgery: adrenal, colon, spleen
  • Endoscopic treatment of varicose veins and venous ulcers
  • Laparoscopic treatment of chronic heartburn or GERD
  • Colonoscopy and colorectal surgery
  • Breast-conserving surgery for cancer patients, including sentinel biopsy
  • Surgical treatment of other cancers, including cancers of the skin, pancreas, bladder, liver ablation, hernia and other parts of the body
  • Sentinel node biopsy
  • Thyroid and parathyroid surgery.

Brain Surgeons Bring Expertise to a Community Hospital

Years ago, North Shore residents had to visit sprawling downtown academic medical centers to find experienced surgical teams skilled in the delicate science of brain surgery. But today, that kind of expert care is available at Rush North Shore Medical Center, where an experienced neurosurgical team has expanded the scope of services available to the community.

Good neurosurgical care requires patience, judgment and experience as well as technical skills. The dedicated and experienced surgeons at Rush North Shore bring these together in their comprehensive evaluation and treatment.

Our neurosurgeons provide comprehensive care for surgical diseases of the brain, spinal cord and peripheral nerves. They specialize in performing highly complex procedures to repair brain aneurysms and remove challenging tumors. Plus, a wide range of innovative treatments is available for:
  • Tumors of the spine
  • Degenerative disc disease
  • Spinal stenosis
  • Brain and spine injuries.
In addition, neurosurgeons at Rush North Shore work with thoracic surgeons to remove complex lesions of the thoracic and lumbar spine. These specialists also treat and stabilize complex spinal fractures.


Delicate Eye Procedures Performed by an Expert Staff

Ophthalmologists at Rush North Shore Medical Center are expertly trained in providing comprehensive medical and surgical eye care.

Our surgeons specialize in:
  • Refractive surgery
  • Corneal surgery
  • Glaucoma
  • Cataract surgery
  • Oculoplastics
  • Pediatrics
  • Neuro-ophthalmology
  • Retinal surgery


Orthopedic Surgery
Comprehensive Care Keeps Patients Active

Orthopedic surgeons at Rush North Shore are committed to keeping you and your family active and healthy.

Our surgeons provide the latest, most advanced procedures in all orthopedic subspecialties, including:

  • Hip and knee replacement
  • Treatment of hip and knee problems
  • Sports medicine
  • Arthroscopic knee, shoulder and ankle surgery
  • Minimally invasive lumbar disc removal
  • Decompressive procedures for cervical and lumbar spinal stenosis
  • Stabilization for all levels of spinal instability
  • Hand surgery
  • Treatment of bone and joint trauma.

Our dedicated staff also offers proven techniques in rehabilitative care for acute and chronic back and joint problems.


Specialized Ear, Nose and Throat Care Treats Range of Diseases

Rush North Shore's ear, nose and throat specialists provide comprehensive diagnosis and treatment of most diseases of the head and neck.

Our skilled surgeons offer general ear, nose and throat care, as well as advanced treatment for:
  • Ear diseases
  • Tumors of the head and neck
  • Nasal and sinus problems.
In addition, our specialists work closely with radiologists and oncologists to offer comprehensive care plans for patients battling head and neck cancer. This multidisciplinary team approach allows doctors to offer more customized care plans to patients.


Plastic Surgery
From Reconstructive to Cosmetic Surgery, We Offer Top-Notch Care

The plastic surgeons at Rush North Shore have exhaustive surgical expertise in many areas, including:
  • Cosmetic surgery
  • Head and neck tumor surgery
  • Pediatric congenital deformities
  • Hand surgery
  • Reconstructive surgery of the breast and other areas of the body.
Our surgeons can perform even highly complex surgeries, including microsurgical transfers. In such procedures, doctors use a microscope to dissect and reattach small blood vessels to other vessels at another site. The goal is to restore function or reconstruct a defect with healthy tissue from the patient's own body. Only surgeons with special expertise in handling blood vessels can perform this technique.


General and Specialized Foot Care Is Available from a Trained Team

Podiatrists at Rush North Shore Medical Center offer general and specialized foot care for patients. This includes diabetic leg and foot care as well as limb salvage.

Our department includes podiatric surgeons who are experts in reconstructive surgery of the foot and ankle, as well as treating traumatic injuries of the legs and feet.

In addition, podiatrists are on staff at the Wound Care Center at Rush North Shore. Here, you can receive a comprehensive evaluation to assess your chronic, hard-to-heal wounds and any underlying diseases that may impact your condition.


Compassionate Care Targeting Men and Women

Rush North Shore offers a full range of the latest diagnostic and treatment services in all areas of urologic care.

Our expertly trained medical staff specializes in innovative comprehensive, individualized patient care. This includes:
  • Benign and malignant prostate diseases
  • State-of-the-art treatment of urinary stone disease, including laser and percutaneous techniques
  • Female urological issues, including urinary incontinence
  • Male urinary incontinence, including incontinence after prostate surgery
  • Advance treatment for bladder cancer, including continent bladder reconstruction
  • The latest advances in male infertility, including microscopic testicular sperm extraction, varicocele repair, and vasectomy reversal


Wound Care Center
New Hope for Healing Wounds

Experts at the Wound Care Center at Rush North Shore provide a comprehensive evaluation to assess your chronic, hard-to-heal wounds and any underlying diseases that may impact your condition.

Following your evaluation, you will receive an individualized, comprehensive care plan, which may include:

  • Surgical debridement
  • Skin grafting
  • State-of-the-art surgical reconstructions involving microsurgical transfers
  • Limb revascularization
  • Bypass surgery
  • Recombinant growth factor therapy
  • Innovative treatments, including research protocols
The clinical team at the Wound Care Center includes physicians from multiple surgical and medical specialties, as well as physical therapists and registered nurses devoted to wound care. This multidisciplinary team maintains contact and communication with your primary care physician by providing ongoing reports on the care that you receive.

The Wound Care Center has been planned with you in mind, with an easy-to-access location off of the main lobby in the Ambulatory Surgery Unit at Rush North Shore. The Center is open Wednesdays from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.


Endoscopy Center
Advanced Equipment Helps Chronic Heartburn Suffers

The Endoscopy Center at Rush North Shore is a full-service program staffed by knowledgeable, highly trained professionals. The center now offers advanced equipment that helps doctors track how patients are responding to standard treatments for chronic heartburn, such as diet and medicine, and determine if they might be candidates for surgery.

With the addition of manometry equipment and 24-hour pH monitoring to the Endoscopy Center, doctors at Rush North Shore are now able to determine if some patients with GERD may be candidates for surgery to improve their health and quality of life.

You may be one of those patients if you:
  • Fail to improve with medication or lifestyle changes
  • Get severe nighttime heartburn
  • Have a bleeding or narrowing esophagus
Manometry equipment at the Endoscopy Center also can help diagnose colorectal problems in patients who have pelvic pain, incontinence and other problems.