Last Chance Surgery lays it all on the line

kpChannel Seven’s new factual series, Last Chance Surgery, will be tough viewing when it premieres on Tuesday night.

Narrated by Dr. Kerryn Phillips, it features two young patients in life-threatening surgeries.

One young patient is told the operation she faces holds a 100% risk of something going wrong, and a 15-20% risk it could be devastating. But she already has a brain tumour that is killing her.

Another young man could be paralysed if the slightest error goes wrong with his operation.

According to today’s Sunday Telegraph, Dr. Phelps confirms that across the series some patients will die.

“It’s warts and all – if there’s a bad outcome, if there’s a catastrophic outcome, if something goes wrong in surgery, you see it,” she said.

“The sorts of procedures that these people are facing … you don’t undergo that, unless you have no other option. Literally, the surgery is their last chance.”

The show is a tough watch for any viewer with heavy decisions, and confronting surgeries filmed in all their glory. It airs 8pm Tuesday on Seven.



  1. Well who cares about packed to the rafters. This show is very educational and its part of life. It makes you think what life is all about. One day your here the next your gone or suffering. Lets all think positive and not take life for granted. Lets live it properly.

  2. Kathleen Kirkup

    Please, although I am scared to find the answer, I would dearly love to know if Shanayes surgery was a success. I missed the 2nd episode. While I agree it is a morbid show and I sit and cry through their sufferings, I like all of the fors and the knockers have the ability to let my remote decice. God bless Charlie Teo for his brains and his ability.

  3. It is hard to watch people suffering but it’s a choice as to whether you watch it all not. I watched it lats night and I thought it was ok . I thought the story about Gavin and his liver surgery was good… its for people who suffer the same things and it is a sense of hope, albeit hyped up to glroify death…

  4. How does this possibly compare to giving Idol judges guns to shoot contestants with…. This show is not promoting murder or manslaughter in any sense of the word. This is a show about real life situations that puts a light on the question of “what would you do?”
    In my opinion if anything, this show highlights the importance of keeping a check of your health and the health of your family. The people in this show have been given a fighting chance albeit some not successful but it is a chance none the less. As for the people who say that they wouldnt watch a show just to see people die… Don’t Watch It. Simple. People die everyday you cant deny that. Ok some people may be uncomfortable having it in their faces, but the people in these shows gave consent for it to be aired knowing the risk of the surgery being unsuccessful and resulting in death, so why do you have an issue with it.

    Look what happened when the late Jade Goody made her battle with cancer and her death so public, girls and women all over Australia became more aware of the risks not having pap smears and took every precaution to not be in that same boat and the rate of women getting pap smears and the cervical cancer vaccine jumped all because of one womans public battle. If this show makes a handful of people stand up and become more aware of their health and get all the tests they should and vaccines they should then the show has done a good thing. I mean if a girl of 17 or a young man of 20 can be struck down with tumors or cancer or any illness like that then anyone can.
    Thats just my 2 cents.

  5. I unfortunately missed the first eposide of Last Chance Surgery and regret it. I am now trying to find out any information relating to “cancer on the spine” as my 65 year old father is a cancer patient. Anybody who has had to face dealing with this horrible disease would appreciate a show like this as any information relating to cancer can be helpful. I hope I can find out the information that i need and if I do, Thank you for this show. It just might help my dad.

  6. To those knockers- Get your head out of the sand. this is life.this is what happens to people. One day it could be you. On the 17th dec 2007 this was me. I went to get my eyes checked before doing my xmas shopping. I was sent straight to hospital. 2 hours later I was told I had a Brain Tumour- bigger than 12cm in diameter. If I hadnt have watched any of these shows I would have been alot more frightened. To me these shows are very educational. this is what life is,whether we like it or not.

  7. I think last chance surgery is a fantastic idea My mum had a terminal brain cancer and if a show was on air like this when she was alive we would have known what we were in for from the beginning, making people aware is also a way of finding a cure, yes it is hard to watch but if this show makes people aware maybe we can find a cure and my mum would be alive right now… Its not up to the public to decide if this is right all not the people in this show want to do it…

  8. Sliced and diced

    What will masquarade as entertainment next?

    ‘See small furry animals run down by cars fighting for survival on the operating table tonight in: ‘last chance vet surgery for potential roadkill’.

    I hope this program dies (no pun intended) quietly and quickly.

  9. Even todays paper said it….. “Channel 7’s version of RPA”…. exploitative TV at it’s worst.

    Channel Nine concept with a Channel Nine “personality” on the Seven Network. Ugh…..Aussie TV really is dull at the moment.

    Watch it rate thru the roof, sadly….

  10. It would be a good idea to get the paddles out and try to electroshock whoever came up with this [email protected] back into coherence. I’m not surprised Phelps is involved. I guess after this gets scrubbed (next week) her next stop will be Labor party HQ!

  11. This makes me feel uncomfortable. Maybe it’s the title. “last chance” anything strikes a note of fear add “surgery” and I just want to close by eyes, put my hands over my ears and say lalalalalala. There is a place for reality on television but I still want to be entertained. I will not be entertained by seeing families and patients desperate and suffering. Even the happy endings will be harrowing until the final result. Too hard to watch.

  12. Sounds like a horrible show!!

    Don’t air it. I don’t want to watch a show and see someone die.

    What kind of show is that?

    Why don’t we just give the judges on Australian Idol shot guns and they can shoot the contestants they don’t like. Right there on stage after their performance.

    I mean, it’s the same thing. People dying.

  13. Since this will be tough viewing, people may switch channels during the show and may not come back for Packed to the Rafters. So in some way, less people will watch PTTR.

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