Laparoscopy surgery is a surgical procedure that makes use of smaller incision or cut than you would expect. Laparoscopic surgery takes its name from the word laparoscope; a laparoscope is a slender tool accompanied by a tiny video camera and a light at the end. During the procedure, a surgeon inserts it via a small incision and into the body. With the help of a video monitor, the surgeon will be able to see happenings inside the body. In the absence of these tools, a larger incision will be made. But with the introduction of this unique instrument, there will be no need for the surgeon to reach the inner part of the body. This also means smaller incision.
What are the advantages/benefits of laparoscopic surgery?
We all know that surgery has played a huge role in transforming humanity. The benefits of surgical treatments include and not limited to increasing the lifespan of an individual, living healthier lives, among others. But it is essential to understand that surgery is a trauma to the body. A lot of things happen after surgery, such as inflammatory immune response when the body reacts to this trauma. Some reactions are good such as small immunological reactions, even in good health. However, significant inflammatory reactions can result in problems such as a slow recovery.
1. The advantages of laparoscopic surgery are those we do not see. Even if you think the most important benefits of laparoscopic surgery compared to traditional surgery is a shorter recovery time or fewer cuts, the real answer is something you cannot even see. The most important advantage of laparoscopic surgery is probably the fact that it causes less inflammation compared to traditional open surgery.
Open surgery causes more inflammatory reactions than laparoscopic procedures. Individuals become vulnerable to bacterial and viral infections due to significant inflammatory reactions after surgery, and it can temporarily aggravate pre-existing chronic inflammatory conditions. While all this remains gloomy to the naked eye, laparoscopic surgery causes less inflammation than open procedures.
Another invisible advantage of laparoscopic surgery is that the incisions cause less adhesion than open surgery. Abdominal adhesions are pieces of tough, fibrous tissue which interconnect the abdominal organs and tissues. Adhesions occur as a result of inflammation, surgery or both. While a few small abdominal adhesions usually do not represent real problems, they can sometimes interfere with women's ability to conceive and even block the normal functioning of their intestines. The exact reason why laparoscopic surgery causes less adhesion is still unknown, but it seems to be due to the fact that laparoscopy does not expose intra-abdominal organs to open air and due to the smaller incisions that are generally used.
2. Surgical scars are smaller with laparoscopic surgery: For several patients, the most important advantages of laparoscopic surgery are that it leaves scars much smaller than open surgery. During open abdominal surgery, the surgeon performs a long incision, which usually runs down the center of the abdomen, surrounding the navel also known as the belly button. Depending on the size of the patient's abdomen and surgery performed, the incision can be 6 inches long or longer. On the other hand, during laparoscopic abdominal surgery, the surgeon makes several small cuts, usually between several millimeters and a centimeter. Patients choose laparoscopic surgery to avoid a long surgical scar, which is noticeable and aesthetically unattractive. Small cuts are less painful and heal faster than larger ones, which indicate faster recovery. In addition to this, they are also less prone to incisional hernias as time goes on.
3. Shorter hospital stays after laparoscopic surgery: Smaller surgical scars are not the only thing that patients benefit from smaller incisions. Large surgical incisions usually mean a more extended stay in the hospital after surgery. On the other hand, minimally invasive laparoscopic surgery is simply a less traumatic process for the body, which means that patients can be allowed to go home much faster than when they had open surgery.
4. Laparoscopic incisions can be safe than open incisions: As mentioned above, laparoscopic surgery involves much fewer cuts than open surgery. A smaller incision indicates that there will be less risk of infection due to smaller space for bacteria and other microbes to find their way into the abdomen.
5. Laparoscopic surgery use miniature camera: The use of a miniature camera allows Laparoscopic surgeons to have a close look at the operating field, which will enable them to work with incredible skill and efficiency.
6. Laparoscopic surgery is only effective as open surgery: Several clinical studies were conducted to assess the safety and efficacy of laparoscopic surgery since its development in the 1970s. These studies have regularly shown that routine abdominal procedures, laparoscopic surgery is just as effective as open surgery. As a matter of fact, in many abdominal surgeries from the gallbladder removal to colon cancer removal laparoscopic surgery has become the most sought-after in the industry.
Laparoscopic surgery quickly becomes the gold standard for bariatric surgery, also known as weight loss surgery. Studies have disclosed that the most commonly performed gastric bypass surgery called Roux-en-Y gastric bypass may be safer than open gastric bypass surgery. The fact that the mortality rate has reduced almost ten times over the past decade, with an increase in the number of bariatric surgeons who perform laparoscopic surgery, also shows the success of the laparoscopic approach.
7. Laparoscopic surgery can have economic benefits: When you sum together all the costs of the surgery, laparoscopic surgery can be cheaper than open surgery. Less time spent in the hospital after surgery is a real cost saving if you take into account that one night in the hospital can cost thousands of dollars. However, even outside the hospital, costs associated with laparoscopy are lower. Small surgical cuts and shorter periods of recovery mean that patients must buy and use fewer dressings (i.e. bandages), less topical medicines, and less pain medication.
On many occasion, a patient undergoing a laparoscopic procedure recovers more quickly than a patient undergoing the same procedure through a large open incision. Faster recovery means that you will return to what you love faster: practice, continue your career, have dinner with friends, visit your loved ones. More rapid recovery with laparoscopic surgery can help you return to life more quickly.