Month: October 2018

What Causes Abdominal Pain


Pain can arise from any of the structures within the abdomen or the abdominal wall. In addition, pain messages originating in the chest, back, or pelvis can sometimes be perceived as coming from the abdomen. For example, patients with heart attacks or pneumonia sometimes complain of upper abdominal pain rather than chest pain. There are many possible causes of pain. The table shows some of the more common causes of pain:

Non-abdominal causes:

Pneumonia (lung infection)
Myocardial infarction (heart attack)
Pleurisy (irritation of the lining around the lungs)
Pulmonary embolism (blood clots to the lungs)


Dr. Johnson did his undergraduate training at the University of Texas at Austin and is a faithful Texas Longhorn to this day. He subsequently attained his Medical Doctorate at the American University of the Caribbean, in St. Maarten, N.A. where he also attained a Masters in Medical Science (M.M.S.). Dr. Johnson’s residency training was completed at the University of Nevada School of Medicine, Las Vegas, NV in General Surgery (2005-11).

He then went on to become one of the early fellows in the country to complete an Acute Care Surgery fellowship at the University of Nevada School of Medicine, Las Vegas, NV (2011-13). During his residency and fellowship, Dr. Johnson also trained in Surgical Endoscopy with a specific emphasis on both diagnostic and therapeutic ERCP. In fact, along with other colleagues, he developed a new method for treating obstructing complicated biliary disease using combined cholecystectomy and ERCP in a one stage procedure, so-called the “One-Step/ELBS”. Throughout residency and fellowship, Dr. Johnson presented at many national conferences regarding ERCP use by surgeons for trauma and general surgery in addition to authoring several publications.

Following post-graduate training, Dr. Johnson joined Desert Surgical Associates and hit the ground running. He cares for patients in the field of general surgery, minimally invasive surgery, trauma, and critical care. Dr. Johnson’s specific interests involve minimally invasive robotic surgery, advancement of minimally invasive surgery in trauma patients, foregut surgery, hepatobiliary surgery and the use of ERCP for both diagnostic and therapeutic measures.

Care Philosophy

Dr. Matthew Johnson is a very compassionate surgeon that always takes extra time when communicating with his patients as well as their families regarding their care. He is driven, kind, and extremely innovative in the field of surgery. He is also one of the few surgical endoscopists in the country. In 2011, as a chief resident, he received the Professionalism Award at the University of Nevada School of Medicine and continues to emphasize this professionalism throughout his surgical practice. He is very well respected by his colleagues in the field and always strives for perfection.

Lessons Learned from the Las Vegas Mass Shooting Tragedy

ACS COT Trauma Panel

Trauma surgeons share lessons learned from the Las Vegas mass shooting tragedy
at American College of Surgeons conference.

The session highlighted real-world insights from Nevada trauma surgeons who
treated seriously injured patients as a result of the deadliest mass shooting
in modern U.S. history at an outdoor music festival in Las Vegas on October 1.

“In the 􀁾rst 24 hours, we saw 212 patients and performed 58 surgeries,” said Matthew Johnson, MD, FACS, with the Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center, Las Vegas. Sunrise staff grouped pods of operating rooms together for treating speci􀁾c types of cases. “More than 100 physicians and more than 200 nurses responded to assist for a total of 83 surgeries performed. Everyone did their jobs. As for the residents—we couldn’t have gotten through this [incident] without them,”Dr. Johnson said.