General surgery is one of the most complete branches of the surgical side of medicine. In fact, The general surgeon is the first one who will attend you after some event in which your life is at risk.

Despite what it seems, general surgery is a specialty that takes several years to achieve. In fact, these are professionals who are very well trained to intervene and take you to the operating room whenever you need it. Other branches of surgery are more precise and only limited to a specific type of intervention, which are usually "elective" and not emergency.

The general surgeon is the first one who will attend you after some event in which your life is at risk. For example, if you are a victim of gunfire right in your abdomen, the specialist who will treat you (and save your life) is the general surgeon.

However, there are many other cases in which we need the help of these specialists. Among the various reasons we have:

Intestinal Emergencies

The general surgeon is an expert in performing surgical interventions related to the gastrointestinal tract almost in its entirety. Although there are several risk factors for some of the most common diseases associated with these systems, the truth is that it can happen to anyone.

For example, appendicitis is a frequent pathology that does not always discriminate according to age. Although your appendix will most likely become inflamed between the ages of 20 and 30, the truth is that even older adults suffer from this disease. Who should take care of you? Well, the general surgeon to send you straight to the operating room and operate as soon as possible.


Many cancer protocols, especially in the early stages, involve "surgical resection", an intervention aimed at limiting the growth of the tumor and preventing its spread by almost eliminating the neoplasm. It is usually a fairly complex operation, which must be accompanied by radiotherapy and chemotherapy.

Although sometimes the "oncological surgeon" may intervene and approach the patient, the truth is that the general surgeon plays a crucial role in this type of intervention.


Let's imagine for a second that you have a thyroid problem that warrants total removal, such as uncontrollable hyperthyroidism. What do you do? Who can help you? Well, the surgeon general is the only one coming to the rescue. This specialist is trained to treat and remove the entire thyroid if necessary, following the appropriate protocols for this.


What if it's not our intestine but some of the glands that work separately? Who can help us? Well, the same general surgeon. If it is your gallbladder that has a problem (which is quite common, especially when talking about gallstones), since it is the specialist who will have to perform a surgical intervention, either elective or emergency.

On the other hand, some other organs such as the pancreas and the liver are also within the realm of the general surgeon. This means that, if you suffer from any disease that requiere surgery in these sectors, it will probably be this specialist who will operate on you.

Symptoms Associated with General Surgery

As with internal medicine, general surgery is a science that covers many diseases and therefore many symptoms. Even minor things that theoretically do not give symptoms, such as non-impacted gallstones in the gallbladder, are also a major cause of elective surgeries. Nevertheless, we want to leave you with a list of the most common symptoms so that you can get your bearings:


Depending on the area, and the causes of the bleeding, a general surgeon may be the specialist in charge of your care. For example, when bleeding from the upper digestive tract manifests as hematemesis (vomiting blood) or melena (defecation of digested blood). There are various causes that can be surgically resolved.

If the bleeding is not from the top but comes from the lower part of the GI tract, it also enters as a possible reason for surgery, especially when it is diffuse and does not stop.


Abdominal pain is often a relevant cause of surgical interventions. The general surgeon uses his or her experience to do a physical examination to guide you on the possible reason behind the pain. Depending on the area, evolution and intensity of this sign, the surgeon may perform a series of tests to confirm a diagnosis or send you directly to the operating room (appendicitis).

Contusions and Wounds

What if you were in a car accident and something pierced your abdomen? What if the impact was too severe? Who evaluates you? The general surgeon. The first insurance evaluation will be by the trauma team, however, if there's a serious problem, surgeons are likely to take over.

There are many frequent injuries during road accidents. Closed traumas, where there is no opening or open wound on your body, can hide internal bleeding that requires immediate surgical intervention. For this reason, when you arrive you will probably have an emergency ultrasound.

Masses and Tumors

If something is growing abnormally in your body, no matter where it is, and it is possible to remove it, then a general surgeon will do it. Tumors are not always malignant, but they can bring on symptoms that cause a lot of discomfort. Here is where removing them becomes a necessity.

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English Doctor Barcelona: Great Professionals for a Thorough Decision

At English Doctor Barcelona we understand how important it can be for you to enter the operating room for an intervention. We know that it is not easy at all. That is why we not only hace excellent professionals, capable of giving you the confidence you need, but we also create a supportive environment so that you feel accompanied and safe throughout the process.

Our most important mission is that you feel supported and as comfortable as possible throughout the process. We will answer any questions you may have. We are committed to your health, but also to your peace of mind.

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