For those of us who cringe at the idea of mass amounts of blood, your stomach being opened to the public in a very literal sense and the pain – oh the pain, we have some good news. Huge leaps have been made in the medical industry and we are fortunate enough to be the witnesses of something phenomenal, namely, laparoscopic surgery.
Laparoscopic surgery can also be called keyhole surgery or minimally invasive surgery. That is a name that presents hope for the hemophobics ( people who are afraid of blood) because as the name implies, there is a minimal invasion into your insides *sigh of relief*.
Laparoscopic surgery has many benefits. Generally, in traditional surgery, as previously stated, doctors make an extensive incision in your abdominal area, exposing all of your organs and tissues to the outside atmosphere in order to operate. Whereas, in laparoscopic surgery, a small incision is made around 1.5 cm, usually close to the belly button area. The abdomen is then inflated with carbon dioxide to expand the abdominal walls and give the surgeon a clear view of the structures inside, as well as providing them with room to work. The carbon dioxide is expelled after surgery and the incisions are nicely stitched up.
You may be wondering now, how in the world surgeons get into that small space? Well, this is where our special laporoscopic instruments come into play. These insturments are long and pencil- like to fit through the small cuts. They are also made of durable materials and usually high quality stainless steel.
How can surgeons see through such a small space? Well, with the use of a laparoscope of course. A laparoscope is a thin telescope fitted with a cold light source and a video camera. A couple other instruments specific to laparoscopic surgery include the needle driver, trocar and bowel grasper.
With that being said, the benefits of having all of this done, as opposed to traditional surgery include:
- Bleeding is greatly reduced. Hence, chances are you won’t have to go through the stress of having a blood transfusion, to compensate for blood loss.
- Because the wound is much smaller, the healing process is significantly quicker and you face much less pain as opposed to a large wound. Patients can leave the hospital the same day or one day later, with less prescription tablets in hand, rather than having an extended stay in the hospital, and losing time at work and with loved ones.
- You aren’t left with huge, unattractive scars!
- Exposure of the internal organs to external contaminants is significantly reduced in laparoscopic surgery compared with open surgery, therefore reducing the risk of post-operative infection. (Oh, the many complications that can be faced!)
Laparoscopic surgery can be done for most procedures ranging from Gastric bypass surgery to the removal of you appendix. When the advantages are considered, this surgery also works out to be more economic for you, the patient. Laparoscopic surgery presents a method with less risk factors involved and more comfort for the patient to experience.