Laparoscopic General Surgery
Bariatric Innovations of Atlanta provides general surgery services for individuals in need of hernia repair, gall bladder removal, thyroid and parathyroid surgery and surgery involving the stomach and intestines.
Whenever possible, the general surgeons at Bariatric Innovations use laparoscopic techniques to perform surgery. Laparoscopic surgery is preferred by many surgeons as a faster, safer, and more cosmetically appealing technique for performing many common operations.
Advantages of Laparoscopic Surgery
Laparoscopic surgery is best known for the following advantages:
- smaller incisions
- faster surgery
- lower risk
- faster recovery
- no need to make large incisions through abdominal muscles
- can be performed in a hospital or an outpatient surgery center
Laparoscopic techniques are can be used for a variety of general surgery procedures.
How is Laparoscopic Surgery Performed?
Laparoscopy uses very small instruments and a camera. Instead of a large incision, several tiny incisions are made. Often, the surgery will involve one incision for the camera and two for surgical instruments.
Laparoscopic surgery is generally performed under general anesthesia. Once the patient is asleep, a small incision is made so that a thin, hollow tube can be inserted. Carbon dioxide gas is injected to expand the abdomen to make it easier for the surgeon to see during surgery. The camera is inserted through this first incision, then additional incisions are made for instruments. During surgery, the surgeon views the procedure using a large screen in the operating room. When the procedure is completed the instruments are removed and the incisions are closed. The small incisions may not need stitches, and can simply be bandaged with sterile tape.
Precautions after Laparoscopic Surgery
Depending on the type of surgery performed, specific instructions for care following laparoscopic surgery will vary. These instructions will be provided at time of discharge from the hospital.
Discomfort following surgery is usually minimal. Pain control will be provided in the hospital and you may be given pain medication to take home. Many patients find over the counter, non-aspirin pain relief to be adequate. The carbon dioxide gas introduced into the abdomen may cause some discomfort for a day or two after the surgery. This discomfort may be felt in the shoulder region. It is usually mild and resolves on its own.
In general, you will be scheduled for a follow up visit with your surgeon about a week after your surgery. If non-dissolving sutures were used to close incisions they will be removed at this time.
Patients who have had surgery should avoid strenuous activity and heavy lifting until they are fully recovered. Recovery time will depend on the procedure and your general state of health, but is typically far shorter than the recovery times for open surgery.