Laparoscopic surgeries are a minimally invasive technique often used in gynecologic surgeries. It is used to for both the treatment and diagnosis of conditions such as ovarian cyst, fibroids, ectopic pelvic floor disorder, certain cancers, etc.1. Though often used with gynecologic issues, not all conditions can be treated with laparoscopic surgery. You should speak to your doctor to learn about the options available to you or for a second opinion, visit us at 67th Street OB/GYN Total Women’s Health Care to speak to one of our gynecologists in Manhattan to today.
How is it done?
In laparoscopic surgeries, small incisions instead of the single incision are made. A laparoscope, which is a thin, lighted tube with a small camera (usually less than half an inch) is then inserted into the abdomen through one of this incisions. This camera is connected to a TV monitor in the operating theatre which it sends images to, allowing the surgeon to see and operate without the need for a long open incision. The abdomen is then filled with carbon dioxide gas in order to allow for better visibility and space to work in. The other instruments required for the surgery are inserted into the abdomen through the other small incisions made (usually less than a quarter inch)3. These incisions are usually made around the bikini line, as such, they are not as noticeable after the incisions have healed.
What are the risks?
As with any medical procedure, there will always be risks associated. In the case of laparoscopic surgeries, the most significant risk is as a result of the extended time spent ion anesthesia. This is because laparoscopic surgeries require more time in some cases1. Hence the duration of the surgery itself may be longer than regular surgery. It is also important to note that some complications do not appear right after surgery and can take up to a few days to a few weeks. Some complications that may appear after surgery are listed below:
- A hernia at the site of the incision
- Internal bleeding
- Though reduced, there is still a risk of infection
- Damage to organs such as the bowel, bladder, stomach, etc.
What are the benefits?
There are a number of advantages to opting for a laparoscopic surgeries instead of an abdominal surgery. Aside from the obvious fact that there will be less pain after the surgery as you will have only small incisions as opposed to the bruising and stretching of the abdominal walls incurred during open abdominal surgery, the other advantages are just as important. Below is a list of some of the advantages of laparoscopic:
- Less scarring: With this technique, there is a lot less scarring as a result of the smaller incisions.
- Faster recovery time: The recovery time is shorter and patients are discharged earlier. In some cases, patients are discharged on the same day, needing zero overnight observation.
- Lower risk of infection: As the incisions made are small and only allow for the surgery tools, there is less exposure to the internal organs, thus reducing the risk of infections3.
- Fewer complications: There are few chances for complications with laparoscopic surgery. This is because the incisions are small and localized, whereas, in open abdominal surgery, the incision is large. This bruising, stretching and pushing of the abdominal walls and organs increase the odds of complications.
- Reduced blood loss: With this technique is a significant reduction in blood loss and in some cases, a blood transfusion is not needed3.
Our team of doctors is experienced in performing laparoscopic surgeries and would be happy to take the time to explain the process and how it applies to your condition. For more information on the conditions treated with laparoscopy surgery, consult with one of our OB/GYNs in Manhattan today.