A brief overview of laparoscopy

  • What Is Laparoscopy? Laparoscopy, also known medically as diagnostic laparoscopy, is a special procedure used in diagnosing some medical disorders in the abdomen (belly). This procedure is in actuality a minor surgical process used to examine the organs inside the abdomen. It is a low-risk, relatively straight forward procedure, involving a small incision on the belly. An instrument called a laparoscope is used in the procedure to enable a detailed look at the abdominal organs.

    A laparoscope is a long, thin tube with a high-intensity light and a high-resolution camera at the front. This instrument works by taking series of pictures with the attached camera. As the laparoscope moves along the inside of the belly, these pictures are then transmitted to a video monitor, where the organs can be examined closely.

    So, in essence, laparoscopy enables a specialist doctor to see inside the body in real time, without actually going through open surgery. During this procedure, the doctor also can obtain organ samples called biopsies which will be sent to the lab for further investigations. So Why Is Laparoscopy done? This procedure is most often used to discover and specifically pinpoint the source of abdominal (belly) or pelvic pain (groin pain). This procedure is normally recommended when other, simple methods are unable to help with diagnosis of pain and other symptoms. So, practically, laparoscopy is done when these simple tests don’t provide enough information for a diagnosis.

    Specifically, a doctor may recommend laparoscopy to examine the following organs:

    1. Appendix

    2. Gallbladder

    3. Liver

    4. Pancreas

    5. Small and Large bowel (Intestines)

    6. Spleen

    7. Stomach

    8. Pelvic or reproductive organs

    By observing these organs with a laparoscope, your doctor can detect:

    • An abdominal mass or tumor

    • Fluid inside the belly

    • Liver disease

    • The degree to which a particular cancer has progressed.

    3. What are the risks involved in Laparoscopy?

    Bleeding and infection are the two common risks associated with laparoscopy. However, these are rare occurrences.Please remember, after your procedure, it’s important to look out for any signs of infection.

    Endeavor to contact your doctor if you experience:

    • stomach pain that becomes more intense over time

    • chills

    • fever

    • redness, swelling, bleeding, or drainage at the incision sites

    • continuous nausea or vomiting

    • persistent cough

    • shortness of breath

    • inability to urinate

    • light headedness

    Laparoscopy by Askthegynaecologist (ATG) References & Photo Credit

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