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Laparoscopic or Endoscopic Surgery

What is laparoscopic surgery?

Laparoscopic or "minimally invasive" surgery is a specialized technique for performing surgery. Previously, this technique was typically used for gallbladder and gynecologic surgery. Over the past 10 years, the use of this technique has expanded to include bowel surgery. In traditional "open" surgery, the surgeon uses a single incision to enter the abdomen. Laparoscopic surgery uses several 0.5 to 1 cm incisions. Each incision is called a "port." A tubular instrument known as a trocar is inserted into each port.

During the procedure, specialized instruments and a special camera called a laparoscope are passed through the trocars. At the start of the procedure, the abdomen is inflated with a gas called carbon dioxide to provide the surgeon with a work space and visibility. The laparoscope transmits images of the abdominal cavity to the high-resolution video monitors in the operating room.

During the operation, the surgeon observes detailed images of the abdomen on the monitor. The system allows the surgeon to perform the same operations as traditional surgery but with smaller incisions.

What are the advantages of laparoscopic surgery?

Compared to traditional open surgery, patients feel less pain, have a shorter recovery period, and there is less scarring with laparoscopic surgery.

What kinds of operations can be performed with laparoscopic surgery?

Most abdominal, intestinal, gynecological and urological surgeries can be performed with the laparoscopic technique. These include surgery for gallbladder, appendix, stomach, intestine, kidney cancer, hysterectomy, ovaries, etc. Recently a technique for thyroid surgery (thyroidectomy) has been developed that we also perform laparoscopically through the lower lip without leaving visible scars.

Previously, there were concerns about the safety of laparoscopic surgery in cancer operations. Currently, several studies involving hundreds of patients have shown that laparoscopic surgery is safe for certain colorectal cancers.

How safe is laparoscopic surgery?

Laparoscopic surgery is as safe as traditional open surgery. When starting a laparoscopic operation, the laparoscope is inserted through a small incision close to the navel. The surgeon first inspects the abdomen to determine if it is safe to perform laparoscopic surgery. If there is large swelling, or if the surgeon finds other factors that prevent structures from being seen clearly, a larger incision may have to be made to safely complete the operation.

All laparoscopic surgery carries some risk, such as complications related to anesthesia and bleeding or complications of infection. The risk of any transaction is determined in part by the nature of the specific transaction.

The general health of the person and other medical problems are also factors that affect the risk of any operation. You should talk to your surgeon about your particular risk for an operation.

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ABC Medical Center


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