Endocrine surgeons specialise in the surgical treatment of disease of the endocrine glands.
These glands include the thyroid gland, the parathyroid, adrenal glands and pancreas which secrete specific hormones that are important in the metabolism of the body.
Surgery is often carried out to treat diseases of these glands. Surgery is commonly used to treat conditions such as goitre, hypercalcemia, hyperthyroidism and tumours which are usually benign.
Goitre (enlargement of the thyroid gland without an increase in thyroid hormone levels) is also treated with surgery as these can cause obstructive symptoms and/or cosmetic problems.
Philippa Mercer and Birgit Dijkstra are the only specialist endocrine surgeons in private practice in the South Island.