GYNAE LAPAROSCOPY – WHAT TO KNOW – NEED TO KNOW
What Is Laparoscopy?
Laparoscopy is a surgical procedure that involves making one, two, or three very small cuts in the abdomen, through which the doctor inserts a laparoscope and specialized surgical instruments.
Laparoscopy is sometimes also known as “band aid surgery” because the cuts made are so small. A laparoscope is a thin fiber-optic tube, fitted with a light and camera.
Laparoscopy allows your doctor to see the abdominal & pelvic organs and sometimes make repairs, without making a larger incision that can require a longer recovery time and hospital stay.
When Is Laparoscopy Done?
Your doctor may suggest laparoscopic surgery to help in diagnosing a cause for infertility when the cause is unknown or if you’re experiencing pelvic pain, a potential symptom of endometriosis or pelvi infection.Your doctor may suggest laparoscopic surgery to determine the source of the pain and possibly treat it (by removing scar tissue, for example). At large it is done for diagnosing and treating the diseases of womb, ovary and fallopian tubes.Laparoscopic surgery is also performed in the case of abnormal pregnancies like ectopic pregnancy or even as a family planning measure to stop further conception(sterilization).
Why Is Laparoscopy Important?
Some causes of infertility like endometriosis, blocked fallopian tubes or developmental defects of reproductive organs can only be diagnosed through laparoscopy which can be easily missed with ultrasound scan. Laparoscopy allows your doctor to not only see what’s inside your abdomen, but also biopsy suspicious growths or cysts.Laparoscopic surgery can also treat some causes of infertility allowing you a better chance at getting pregnant either naturally or with fertility treatments.
How Is Laparoscopy Done?
Laparoscopy is performed in a hospital under general anaesthesia. Your doctor will give you instructions on how to prepare for surgery before hand. The anesthesiologist will place a mask over your face and after breathing a sweet smelling gas for a few minutes, you’ll fall asleep. Once the anesthesia has taken effect, the doctor will make a small cut around your belly button. Through this cut, a needle will be used to fill your abdomen with carbon dioxide gas which is harmless. This provides room for your doctor to see the organs and move the surgical instruments. Once your abdomen is filled with gas, the surgeon will then place the laparoscope through the cut to look around at your pelvic organs. The surgeon may also biopsy tissue for testing or proceed with surgery if required.
How Will I Feel During and After Laparoscopy?
During laparoscopic surgery you’ll be under the effects of general anesthesia, so you should not feel any pain nor remember the procedure. When you wake up, it’s normal for the area around the cuts to feel sore and your abdomen may feel tender especially if your doctor removes a lot of scar tissue. You may feel bloated from the carbon dioxide gas and you may experience sharp pains in your shoulder. This should go away in a few days.Though you’ll probably go home on the same day of your surgery, you should plan on taking it easy for at least a day or two. You be sure to speak to your doctor on what to expect.
Risks and Benefits of laparoscopy
As with any surgery, there is a small risk of problems with laparoscopy. Sometimes the problems do not appear right away. The risk that a problem will occur is related to the type of surgery that is performed. The more complex the surgery, the greater the risk. Be sure to ask your doctor about the risks associated with your specific surgery.
Risks Associated With Laparoscopy
Laparoscopy is a safe procedure, but there is a small risk of the following complications:
- Bleeding or a hernia (a bulge caused by poor healing) at the incision sites
- Internal bleeding
- Damage to a blood vessel or other organ, such as the stomach, bowel, or bladder
- Problems caused by anesthesia
Laparoscopy has many benefits. There is less pain after laparoscopic surgery than with open abdominal surgery, which involves larger incisions, longer hospital stays, and a longer recovery. The risk of infection also is lower. You will be able to recover from laparoscopic surgery faster than from open abdominal surgery. It can be done as outpatient surgery. The smaller incisions that are used allows you to heal faster and have smaller scars with better cosmatic effect.
What Happens if the Results Are Abnormal?
Depending on what is wrong, your gynaecologist may treat the problem during the same surgery. Adhesions, endometrial growths, cysts, and fibroids may be removed in some cases. If the fallopian tubes are blocked, they may be opened if possible. If an ectopic pregnancy is found the surgeon will remove the abnormal pregnancy and repair any tissue damage. After surgery, your doctor will explain what is the diagnosis/ treatment offered to you and is there any need for further medication.
Advent of modern laparoscopic procedures have revolutionised the dianosis and treatment of obstetric and gynaecological conditions. It is ideal for us to know and choose the best treatment options available around to make a healthy living.
A reasonable man adapts himself to the world;the unreasonable one persists in trying to adopt the world to himself.Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man(George Bernard Shaw)
M.B.B.S., M.D(AIIMS- Delhi)., DNB,
Gynae Endoscopic surgeon,
Specialist & Asst. Professor in OBG
Dept. of OBG – GMC and GMCH&RC- AJMAN