General Surgery / Top clinic in Germany, Friedrichshafen

General Surgery Department

Admission to hospital for surgery is always stressful for the patient. The employees of Surgical Clinic I for General Surgery at Friedrichshafen Clinic strive to make your stay as pleasant as possible. Besides offering medical solutions to your health problems, we also wish to make it easier for you to obtain all the information you require before admission. We will attempt to give you most of the information that you need regarding our department, the range of treatments available and the main points of focus of the clinic in generally.

The Clinic for General, Visceral and Vascular Surgery under the leadership of head physician Prof. Thorsten Lehmann focuses mainly on oncological treatment.

In our more than 2,000 patients are cared for on an in-patient basis annually, and more than 2,400 operations are performed in total. Our team is made up of 12 doctors who are available around the clock. Without exception, all treatments are performed by experienced specialists and head physicians. The employees at our Clinic for General Surgery are efficient, friendly and caring, and are committed to restoring your health to the best of their ability.

Minimally invasive operation methods play an important role in visceral surgery. Their importance in endocrine surgery is also on the increase. Vascular treatments are dealt with our colleagues from the interventional radiology and neurology sections in an interdisciplinary manner. This enables excellent, comprehensive treatment at all times. In general, our surgeons communicate regularly with other specialists, in order to ensure the best methods of treatment for your specific problem.

Main point of focus of Surgical Clinic I for General Surgery

Besides general procedures, (appendix, gall bladder, inguinal hernia), endocrine surgery (thyroid, adrenal glands) and proctological operations (haemorrhoids, anal fistula, rectum) we are particularly specialised on the treatment of tumours and cancer treatment in general (gastrointestinal tract, oesophagus, liver, bile ducts, pancreas ...) and gastroenterological surgery (diverticulitis, M. Crohn…). We are especially committed to using minimally invasive techniques (keyhole surgery) wherever possible.

The following types of surgery are available at our department:

  • Oncological procedures including peritonectomy and hyperthermal intra-abdominal chemo lavage (HIPEC)
  • Oesophagus and stomach procedures
  • Procedures for inflammatory intestinal diseases
  • Colorectal procedures
  • Liver, gall blabber and pancreas procedures
  • Minimally invasive procedures
  • Full range of endocrine procedures (thyroid, minimally invasive adrenal surgery)
  • Hernia procedures (abdominal wall and abdominal hernia procedures)
  • Peritoneal carcinosa
  • Surgical therapy of encapsulating sclerosing peritonitis (ESP)
  • Adiposity procedures
  • Vascular procedures
  • Paediatric procedures
  • Urology surgery

Visceral surgery is one of the main points of focus of our Clinic for General Surgery.

In visceral and oncological surgery, primary malignant intestinal and pulmonary diseases and tumours of the oesophagus, the stomach, the liver and the pancreas are mainly treated.

Surgery Methods

The Friedrichshafen clinic is equipped with modern medical technologies. For example, robotic surgery is recognized as minimally invasive. Only minimal traumatization of tissues, an excellent cosmetic effect as well as the absence of severe pains are characteristic of this kind of surgery. Reduced traumatism seriously decreases blood loss; therefore, the risk of post-surgical complications is very low. A surgery, performed by robotized instruments, is usually referred to as a closed operation, as an operative wound doesn't have a direct contact with the environment. This reduces the dissemination of microbes and helps to avoid infections. Performing such surgeries, our surgeons get a full and highly detailed 3D-image - this allows for absolutely accurate, fully controlled manipulations. That is why surgery is less stressful, and patients generally recover faster.

The newest equipment in German clinics gives an ability to perform minimally invasive surgeries with excellent cosmetic effect and lower traumatic effect on tissues; this makes the recovery process faster and the patient can leave the hospital just a few days after the operation. Due to modern techniques, the Friedrichshafen clinic can perform successful surgical treatment in different areas of medicine, e.g. in oncologic surgery. Orthopedic surgery improves the patient's condition in the shortest time possible. Urological and gynecological surgeries are usually performed by sparing methods and are oriented on saving the reproductive function. The Friedrichshafen clinic also offers neurosurgery that requires the newest medical equipment and the highest qualification of the specialist. The Friedrichshafen clinic also belongs to one of the best German centers for general and visceral surgery.

Laparoscopic surgery

In our clinic, the focus of our minimally invasive techniques is laparoscopic surgery. Laparoscopic surgery is a sub-area of surgery in which an optical instrument, the laparascope, is used for surgical procedures within the abdominal cavity, in some cases together with additional instruments.

Laparoscopic examinations are an important diagnostic process used to determine disorders of the abdominal and pelvic organs. This type of examination is particularly useful in the case of abdominal symptoms that cannot be cleared up by other methods of examination. Unfavourable changes to the stomach, intestines, liver and pancreas and also parts of the uterus and ovaries can usually be clearly recognised in this way.

During the procedure, the surgeon can also take tissue samples (biopsies). In the case of tumours in the abdomen and pelvis, laparoscopic examinations are also very useful since they enable the surgeon to determine whether or not a tumour can be removed surgically. The functioning of specific organs can be examined in the same manner. For example, in childless couples, a laparoscopic examination can be used to determine whether the fallopian tubes are obstructed.

Laparoscopy is not limited to examinations alone. It is also used in minimally invasive surgery for the treatment of various disorders.

The following procedures are examples of operations than can be performed with a laparoscope (keyhole surgery):

  • Laparoscopic gastric surgery (benign and malignant)
  • Laparoscopic anti-reflux surgery (operations for reflux disease)
  • Laparoscopic colon surgery (benign and malignant, treatment of sigma colon diverticulitis - inflammation of small pouches that form within the Colon sigmoideum)
  • Laparoscopic gall bladder and appendix surgery
  • Laparoscopic iguinal, abdominal and umbilical hernia surgery
  • Laparoscopic surgery of the liver and spleen
  • Procedures for blunt abdominal trauma and malignant diseases of the digestive tract
  • SILS (single incision laparoscopic surgery). This technique only requires a small incision of 15 to 20mm in the navel so that no visible scars remain. It causes no additional damage to the internal organs and requires only one incision.

The surgeon performs a laparoscopy by inserting a tube-shaped optical instrument (endoscope) into the abdominal or pelvic cavity in order to examine the internal organs. Besides making a diagnosis, he can also perform laparoscopic surgery at the same time.

As opposed to open surgical procedures on the abdomen (laparotomy), procedures with the laparascope require only a few small incisions in order to provide access for the endoscope and the surgical instruments. It is therefore referred to a keyhole surgery. A laparoscopic operation is performed under general anaesthetic. The surgeon makes two or three incisions about 1cm long, in the abdominal wall. The laparoscope is inserted through the first incision in the navel. On the end of the tube-shaped instrument are a light source and a very small camera. Images are transmitted to a monitor on which the surgeon is able to assess the appearance and condition of the abdominal or pelvic organs and he can also perform the operation via the monitor.

The additional cuts are required for the insertion of the very small surgical instruments (e.g. grasping forceps, scissors, aspiration device) into the abdominal cavity. The surgeon usually also inflates the abdomen with carbon dioxide. This raises the abdominal wall from the internal organs, allowing room for the surgeon to perform the laparoscopic surgery and giving him a better view so that he can work more precisely, thereby reducing the possibility of injury occurring.

Compared to open abdominal surgery, laparoscopic surgery is gentler on the patient. With the help of the laparascope, fine details can be enlarged on the monitor, thereby making it easier for the surgeon to see what he is doing. Even narrow sections and acute angles between organs can be viewed clearly.

The small cuts usually heal more quickly and cause less pain. The patients can get up sooner and the digestive tract is restored faster, making it possible for the patient to resume his normal eating habits after a shorter period of time.

This not only shortens the period of hospitalisation - it also reduces the rate of complications.

Laparoscopic surgery is sometimes done on an out-patient basis, particularly when it only involves an examination, or the removal of small cysts or endometrial growths. Laparoscopic surgery also results in fewer complications later on, such as adhesions of the abdominal cavity and umbilical hernia, that are more common in open procedures.

Minimally invasive techniques such as laparoscopic surgery are much loved by patients because they result in very little scarring and cause less pain. This means less time in hospital and quicker recovery, and also less time away from work.

With modern laparoscopic surgery the chances of recovery from carcinoma surgery and good healing after cosmetic surgery are much better than in non- laparoscopic procedures in which the incisions are much longer.

Laparoscopic examinations have become routine for us. We have now been performing such procedures for decades and our clinic is equipped with the latest technology, enabling us to perform such procedures in an anatomically contoured, precise manner with very little blood-loss.

Video-assisted surgery

Video-assisted surgery is another progressive technology, actively used at our clinic. It is a minimally invasive method that functions as follows: a special camera is inserted into a small incision and transports the image on a screen. Relying on the received information about the position and the state of the patient's organs, vessels and nerves, a surgeon can perform very precise operative manipulations. This method is also aimed at minimizing the traumatism and making the rehab process faster. In our department this technology is often used for surgeries on thoracic organs.

Da Vinci surgical system

The Urological Clinic in Friedrichshafen, which is the largest center for the treatment of urological diseases in Germany, employs an innovative robotic surgery. The robot da Vinci (daVinci Si) is the result of further development of the technology of minimally invasive surgery and laparoscopy. The following surgeries are conducted with the help of daVinci surgery:

  • Endoscopic extraperitoneal radical prostatectomy (removal of the prostate gland affected with malignant tumors);
  • Partial nephrectomy;
  • Radical cystectomy (surgical removal of the bladder), etc.

The main advantages of such operations are:

  • reduction of pain in the postoperative period;
  • Significantly better cosmetic results compared to a traditional surgery;
  • sparing characteristics in relation to tissues and nerves;
  • Very fast recovery of operated patients;
  • The three-dimensional image allows perfect, detailed observation of the whole process of operation and the best orientation in the operating space. This guarantees the better precision, lower risks and the best treatment results.

About 1000 surgeries are carried out with the help of Da-Vinci System at Friedrichshafen Clinic.

Effective treatment

In general, modern tumour therapy is performed on an interdisciplinary basis. Our surgical units work closely with the internal medicine, oncology, radiation therapy, radiology and pathology sections. A weekly “tumour conference” takes place, in which an individual therapy plan is drawn up for each individual patient. This ensures that each patient receives the best possible treatment for his specific problem.

In general, operations usually present very good chances for complete recovery in the case of most tumours and other malignant growths. We perform all surgical procedures strictly according to current European standards. If you decide to trust us with your treatment, you can be assured that you are in competent hands.

General surgical procedures with excellent results

We have a great deal of experience in general surgery, and use minimally invasive techniques where possible. Our medical imaging allows us to perform these procedures with a high degree of precision. In general, we treat benign tumours and also many malignant tumours of the intestines with minimally invasive techniques. According to our general experience, such procedures are particularly useful in the case of rectal tumours. In general, this technique is also advantageous in the treatment of chronic inflammatory diseases of the intestines because it does not have such a dramatic effect on the patients, who are often very young.

The initial examination and treatment of acutely ill patients at the Clinic for General Surgery in Friedrichshafen takes place within the framework of an interdisciplinary emergency room. In general, all other initial examinations (not emergencies) take during in pre-arranged appointments during our specialist consulting hours.

General Surgery

4.7/5 (2293 votes)

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Medical Staff

MD PV Thorsten Lehmann

MD PV Thorsten Lehmann
Head of the Surgery Department

MD Jürgen Kies

MD Jürgen Kies
Senior physician

MD Frank Aspacher

MD Frank Aspacher
Senior physician

MD Stefan Tange

MD Stefan Tange
Senior physician

B. Schmollinger

B. Schmollinger
Medical secretary


General Surgery



Facts and Figures

  • 30 rectum resections with da Vinci® robot
  • 207 inguinal hernia surgeries
  • 725 veins and arteries surgeries
  • 250 intestine surgeries
  • 423 stomach surgeries
  • 70% of all surgeries are minimally invasive

+49 163 59-51-511


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