What is a laparoscopy?
Laparoscopy is one of the modern-generation surgical techniques considered to be minimally invasive. For this type of surgery, a laparoscope is going to be used in order to reach a location inside the body from a distant point. The laparoscope is introduced into the body through a small incision, this being just one of the many advantages offered, compared to the regular open surgical intervention. Laparoscopy guarantees less bleeding and reduced pain for the patient, plus given the fact that incisions are smaller in size and number, the downtime is considerably reduced.
The laparoscope is actually a cable made from fiber optic and it can either be connected to a video camera or it has a special device at its own end. The operating field is illuminated by an attached light source and, during the surgery, gas is usually pumped into the abdomen in order to allow for better organ exposure and visibility. The most operations performed with the help of a laparoscope are in the abdomen or pelvis but there are many operations in the chest area that can be performed using this technique as well.
Laparoscopy can be performed using two methods:
Da Vinci surgical method
- Multiple incisions are made on the skin
- The surgeon controls the system located away from the patient; using two specific grippers, the surgeon will perform the surgery from a remote location. The hand movements, regardless of how complex they may be are tracked and the surgeon also receives feedback through them.
- Each essential item for the surgery is located at a specific incision site (camera, pump for CO2, saline solution for cleansing, scalpel and other cutting tools)
- These items may have different locations but they are all direct towards the same surgical objective.
Bonati surgical method
- A single incision is made on the skin
- The system has multiple control functions to deliver
- Before the actual activation of the laser cutter, the saline cleansing solution and the CO2 pump have already operated together
- The surgeon uses the inside camera and the additional cold light to visualize the area in which the operation is going to be performed and also to receive feedback.
- The images are displayed with an enhanced resolution on a special monitor.
- This surgical method is especially recommended for spinal interventions.
The cost of laparoscopy is dependent on several factors. First of all, you should know that this surgical procedure can be used either for diagnosis or treatment. The cost of laparoscopy will be different if the procedure is used to simply confirm a diagnosis or if there is an actual condition that needs to be treated. On average, you should expect to pay somewhere around $1500 to $5000 for a laparoscopy procedure. The general health insurance covers such procedures but you will have to check your policy and see what exactly is covered under this category.
Also, you should know that the price is influenced by the geographical area, the facility in which you decide to have the intervention and the actual doctor performing it. The fees that you will have to pay are not only related to the said surgery but also to the number of hospital stays, anesthesia and other care-related fees. Also, depending on the technology used for the laparoscopy procedure, the price might go higher. Robotic or hand guided assistance is clearly more expensive, so you will have to talk to your doctor about such problems and make sure that you are covered by insurance.
The recovery period depends from patient to the other and certainly it also influenced by the overall health of the patient. Immediately after the laparoscopy procedure, the patient will be kept under close observation, so as to make sure that no complications occur. The factors that influence the duration of recovery are the overall health, anesthesia reactions and the reaction to the actual procedure. Your vital signs will be monitored throughout the entire duration of the hospital stay, so as to make sure that no life-threatening complications appear shortly after the surgery.
In the initial period after the surgery, you will most likely feel pain and throbbing at the recently incision sites. Anti-inflammatory medication might help during this period. You might experience pain from the carbon dioxide used during the surgery, as this can irritate the diaphragm and also cause bloating. During the recovery period you will not be allowed to do heavy lifting or any activity that requires a lot of physical effort. As soon as you can, you can resume your normal diet. The only indication of a special diet is if you have had your gallbladder removed, as there will be certain types of foods that you will have to avoid, especially in the initial period after the surgery.
You have to understand that it takes time for the body to heal, even after a minimally invasive surgery. The best way to recover is to establish a daily routine and go through with it, rather than staying in bed and waiting to get better. A healthy diet, containing plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables, will also guarantee a faster recovery. Also, make sure that you drink plenty of water, as it is highly important to stay hydrated. Be sure to quit nasty habits, such as smoking and search for nicotine replacement solutions. Visit a physical therapy and learn an exercise program that can help you with the faster recovery.
The recovery period may be slower in patients whose overall health is not so good. For example, diabetes patients recover more slowly from laparoscopic procedures and this is why it is recommended that they take things one by one. Also, smoking, drinking alcohol or an unbalanced diet can prolong the healing process. You need to learn how to take good care of yourself and make sure that you help the body to heal after the laparoscopy procedure. Otherwise, you might suffer from unnecessary complication and prolong the healing process unnecessarily.
One of the major concerns of any surgical procedure is related to the presence of postoperative scars. Given the fact that this is a minimally invasive surgery, the incisions are not very large and they usually heal very well on their own. However, there are natural remedies you can use at home in order to guarantee a better healing. Among the recommendations for home remedies after laparoscopic surgery you will find vitamin E and lavender oil. These can help to improve the appearance of laparoscopy scars and, being natural, they have no additional side-effects.
In case of more obvious laparoscopy scars, the doctor also might decide to send you to a dermatologist for expert advice. However, you should keep in mind that scarring can be prevented by taking good care of the incision site after the surgery and allowing it the necessary time to heal. Resting, drinking plenty of water and eating healthy are going to help to prevent excessive scar tissue from appearing at the site of the incisions. Before you decide to apply any topical cream, gel or ointment to the area of the operation, it is for the best that you consult your doctor and see whether he or she approves of the decision. Not all creams are good for such cases, so you need to be careful.
Pictures of Laparoscopy Scars
Here are some of the pictures collection of laparoscopy scars…
Watch these Laparoscopy videos to learn more information about the procedure: