Esophagectomies at Northern Light Eastern Maine Medical Center are performed as both a minimally invasive M. Jawad Latif, MDand standard open procedure to remove a diseased esophagus and reconstruct the gastrointestinal tract.

Esophagectomy is a surgical procedure that involves removing part of, or the entire, diseased esophagus. A portion of the stomach is then pulled up into the chest and connected to the remaining, healthy portion of the esophagus or pharynx, creating a new esophagus. M. Jawad Latif, MD, cardiothoracic surgeon, Northern Light Cardiothoracic Surgery, is the only physician in the State of Maine offering minimally invasive esophagectomy using the latest surgical robot.

Virtually all patients who need an esophagectomy are candidates for the minimally invasive, or laparoscopic, procedure. Specialists at Northern Light Cardiothoracic Surgery work closely with the team at Northern Light Cancer Care in Brewer, as well as patients and referring physicians, to determine the treatment plan that is best for each patient.

What causes esophageal cancer?

The most common causes are:
  • Tobacco use
  • Heavy alcohol use
  • Barrett's esophagus - A condition in which the cells lining the lower part of the esophagus have changed or been replaced with abnormal cells that could lead to cancer of the esophagus. Gastric reflux is the most common cause of Barrett esophagus.
  • Older age

Signs and symptoms

If you experience any of the following symptoms, speak with your physician to determine if you need a referral to see Dr. Latif:
  • Painful or difficult swallowing
  • Weight loss
  • Pain behind the breastbone
  • Hoarseness and cough
  • Indigestion and heartburn

If you have been told you need esophageal or other thoracic surgery, our state-of-the-art surgical robot may be a great alternative to standard "open" surgery. Learn more below.


To learn more about treatment options for esophageal cancers, contact Northern Light Cardiothoracic Surgery at 207.973.5293.