Laparoscopic surgery is an alternative to more invasive surgeries. In traditional surgery, the surgeon must make large incisions in order to navigate inside the body. However, laparoscopic procedures utilize only a small incision of about a half-inch. The doctor inserts a plastic tube into the incision and can then insert a video camera, giving her a clear view of the inside of the body. Once the doctor can see the problem, she can also use the tube to insert the instruments to cut, scrape or remove the area.
A plethora of benefits can be associated with this minimally invasive procedure. Generally, patients experience much less discomfort after the procedure because the incisions are so much smaller. This also leads to decreased recovery times, allowing patients to get back on their feet much faster. In many cases, patients can return to work and full activities the day after surgery. Lastly, laparoscopy creates much smaller scars than traditional surgery, making it a more attractive procedure for aesthetic reasons. Less scarring also means less chance of post-operative complications in the future.
Laparoscopy can be used in a number of different common procedures, including a biopsy of an abnormal growth in the abdominal area. Because of this, it is a great way to check whether cancer has spread, or a person merely has a benign tumor. Sometimes, the growth can even be removed through this method.
Laparoscopic methods are also used to check for and treat certain problems, such as ectopic pregnancies, hernias, endometriosis, fibroids, cysts or pelvic inflammatory disease. It is also an ideal way to perform gallbladder surgery to remove the organ because of inflammation or to remove troublesome gallstones. Any time the patient suffers an unexplained pain or problem in the abdomen, the doctor may suggest exploratory laparoscopy to try to determine the cause of the pain.
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