Mr Adrian Aitken MBBS PhD FRACS

Specialist General Surgeon

Practice Description:

Mr Adrian Aitken is a broadly trained and skilled consultant general surgeon who has worked in Gippsland for over a decade. He performs a wide range of operations, endoscopy and surgical procedures and provides excellence in care when and where it is needed.



A to Z of Procedures and Operations or Scope of Practice:

  • Abdominoplasty
  • Abdominal wall reconstruction for ventral hernias
  • Amputations of digits and limbs for acute and chronic disease
  • Anal conditions such as fissures and fistula care
  • Bowel and rectal cancer surgery including hemi-colectomy, low and ultra-low anterior resection of the rectum. Abdomino-perineal resection for ano-rectal cancer and ‘enbloc’ pelvic resection for advanced malignancy.
  • Breast surgery for breast lumps and breast cancer including mastectomy
  • Carpal tunnel decompression
  • Circumcision in children and adults
  • Colostomy and stoma care including revisional surgery
  • Diabetic ulcer care of the foot and lower limbs
  • Diverticular disease surgical care including bowel resection
  • Fracture care
  • Gallstone surgery, both laparoscopic and open
  • Ganglions of fingers. feet and hands
  • Gastric surgery for benign and malignant conditions
  • Gastroscopy and Colonoscopy including polypectomy and endoscopic mucosal resections for early cancers
  • Haemorrhoids
  • Hand surgery for trigger fingers, tendon and tendon sheath problems
  • Dupuytren’s contracture hand surgery
  • Hernia repair of the umbilicus, groin, abdominal wall and pelvis
  • Laparoscopic surgery
  • Lymph node excisions
  • Melanoma and skin cancer surgery including sentinel node biopsy and lymph node basin clearance
  • Minor orthopaedic procedures
  • Parathyroidectomy for hyperplasia and tumours of the parathyroids
  • Peripheral nerve transpositions
  • Pilonidal sinus excision procedures
  • Plastic surgical procedures including head and neck surgery
  • Salivary gland surgery including excision of parotid and salivary gland tumours
  • Sentinel node procedures for melanoma and breast carcinomas
  • Skin cancer excisions
  • Skin grafting and local flap reconstruction
  • Testicular and scrotal procedures including hydrocele and testicular tumour surgery
  • Trauma surgery
  • Thyroid surgery
  • Ulcer care of the lower limb
  • Varicose veins
  • Vasectomy
  • Wound care

Hospital Care:

Mr Aitken provides access to public hospital care at Bairnsdale Regional Health Service for uninsured patients. Patients with private health insurance have greater choice in when and where to have their operation and can be treated also at Maryvale Private Hospital in Morwell. Endoscopy access and wait times are generally short. Sometimes wait times do become extended according to public hospital waiting lists but are tailored according to patient need.

Gippsland Melanoma and Skin Cancer Clinic:

Gippsland Melanoma and Skin Cancer Clinic is a another service provided by Mr Adrian Aitken and is a diagnostic and treatment service that requires general practitioner referral.

A consultation for skin cancer usually involves a thorough and comprehensive skin survey from the top of the head to the soles of the feet including all skin surfaces focussing attention on troublesome skin lesions. For patients with multiple naevi or a family history of dysplastic naevi, that is abnormal moles or melanoma creation of a mole map or whole body digital photographic atlas may also be recommended with Mr Charles Frewin, Clinical Photographer. Not all patients require photographic survey and in most instances a diagnostic skin examination is all that is required.

For those patients with abnormal skin lesions upon referral from a general practitioner or those that have abnormal skin lesions discovered after examination simple excision is offered. Many skin lesion excisions can be accomplished at Fitzpatrick House under local anaesthetic and usually take between half to three quarters of an hour to complete. Skin excisions are painless procedures following infiltration of adequate amounts of local anaesthetic and the procedure is usually less worrisome than a trip to the dentist. In many circumstances even quite large and difficult clinical situations can be treated under local anaesthetic with usually a good or excellent cosmetic outcome without the need for hospital care.

With more advanced or neglected skin cancers or in particular melanomas more involved surgery may be required after appropriate assessment and any X-ray or CT imaging that may be required. PET imaging has to be undertaken in Melbourne if required but MRI imaging can be done locally through either Latrobe Regional Hospital or Bairnsdale Regional Health Service. Referral can also be made to Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre for advanced cases requiring special access to Melanoma Trials but in most circumstances diagnostic work-up and treatment for skin cancers can occur locally.

Mr Aitken has been a member of the Australia and New Zealand Melanoma Trials Group and undertakes close collaboration with the melanoma clinic at Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre in Melbourne.

Education and Background:

Adrian Aitken has primary university qualifications in Science with a Bachelor of Science and Honours in anatomy winning a University of NSW scholarship prize in anatomy. He gained a PhD in neuroscience for work and a thesis on central nervous system development on the mechanisms involved with wiring of the nervous system for which he was given an award for Young Scientist of the Year by the Australian and New Zealand Society for Cell Biology. He then undertook post-doctoral work whilst transitioning into Medicine. And then gained qualifications in Medicine with progression through neurosurgery to general surgery ultimately gaining a Fellowship of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons in 2003. He worked in the past as a tutor in science disciplines such as Biochemistry and Physiology as well as a lecturer and senior lecturer  in anatomical disciplines. He also worked as a lecturer in surgery with the University of Tasmania and also as a senior lecturer in surgery with Monash University. Early high school education was undertaken in the state high school system in NSW in the Northern Beaches of Sydney.