Types of Surgery

It’s funny. People think of surgery as “major” when it happens to them and “minor” when it’s being done to someone else! In reality, surgery is thought to be major when it involves any vital organs and/or requires a long time period to perform. The following words classify various surgeries:



A procedure that rids the body of a problem or corrects a condition.

Making Medical Decisions


A procedure that helps in making a diagnosis about a suspected problem.


A procedure that may or may not be done, depending upon the patient’s wishes.


An immediate operation to save a life or maintain the use of a body part.


A surgery that explores a body organ or body area for a suspected disorder.

Know What Treatment You've Agreed To


A surgery that eases bodily pain but doesn’t cure the problem.


A surgery set up well in advance of the actual operation date.


An operation that must be done within a matter of hours.

This website is not meant to substitute for expert medical advice or treatment. Follow your doctor’s or health care provider’s advice if it differs from what is given in this guide.


The American Institute for Preventive Medicine (AIPM) is not responsible for the availability or content of external sites, nor does AIPM endorse them. Also, it is the responsibility of the user to examine the copyright and licensing restrictions of external pages and to secure all necessary permission.


The content on this website is proprietary. You may not modify, copy, reproduce, republish, upload, post, transmit, or distribute, in any manner, the material on the website without the written permission of AIPM.