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Minimally Invasive Gynecologic Surgery

Endscopic, Laparoscopic, and Robotic Procedures for Less Trauma and Faster Healing

Medical science has worked steadily to make surgery easier to undergo, and in recent decades has achieved significant strides in this effort.  This is certainly true for gynecologic surgery.  

Newer, less-invasive forms of surgery can get patients feeling better sooner – with less recovery time, less time in the hospital, less scarring, and less pain, when compared to conventional surgery.  While the Center for Women’s Health & Gynecology provides traditional, open surgery as well, it has increasingly been able to offer patients minimally invasive procedures based on use of the latest in endoscopic, laparoscopic, and robotic equipment.  

Endoscopes are long, tube-like instruments introduced through small cuts in the skin.  These tools include a small video camera and light – permitting the surgeon to see inside the body – as well as surgical instruments used to resect or manipulate tissue.  This approach gives the same benefits as conventional surgery but causes less trauma to surrounding and surface tissues, and thus permits faster healing and faster return to normal activities.

Because minimally invasive surgery uses smaller incisions through the skin and less manipulation of nearby tissue, the procedures are less disruptive to the body.  As a result, patients have less postoperative discomfort, and pain generally resolves itself more quickly than with conventional surgery.  

Gynecologic surgeons have made more use of robotics than has any other surgical specialty.  Learn more about robotic-assisted surgery at Aria.

Open surgery can also leave patients with large, unsightly scars.  But the center's specialists can perform minimally invasive procedures typically through two or three incisions that are less than an inch in length.  Most people will not notice the marks left by these incisions.

This safe and established approach, in use for more than a decade now, has benefited tens of millions of Americans treated in various specialty areas.  Surgeons use this strategy for conditions where they can achieve surgical outcomes that are at least equivalent to that from conventional surgery but with all the benefits of a minimally invasive approach.  

Gynecologic surgeons can use hysteroscopy, which involves no incisions at all, to perform a number of surgical interventions, including removing growths (such as polyps or uterine fibroids.  Laparoscopy is the form of endoscopy-guided interventions used most commonly in gynecologic surgery.  A laparoscope is a type of endoscope used for pelvic surgery.  Laparoscopy requires several very small incisions in the abdomen.  

Laparoscopic surgery that the center offers includes procedures for:

Through training, study, and daily application, the Aria specialists gynecology surgery are constantly honing their skills and techniques in laparoscopic surgery, in order to provide patients with the best possible experience and results from minimally invasive procedures.

Advanced surgical centers such as Aria, use robotics in gynecology most often to perform robotic hysterectomy, but the robotic system has proven an important stride for operations involving removal, resection, or repair of all female reproductive organs, as well as for removal of tissue and reconstruction of a number of areas.  Gynecologic surgeons use the robotic system to perform surgery at treatment for:

 

Of course, minimally invasive surgery is not always the right option.  For some patients it is not an appropriate choice.  In recommending conventional or minimally invasive surgery, the center's surgeons will consider a variety of factors.  In addition, sometimes a procedure may start out as minimally invasive but have to be converted to conventional surgery during the operation.  Factors influencing these decisions, include:

  • obesity;
  • history of prior abdominal surgery causing dense scar tissue;
  • access to organs;
  • bleeding problems during the operation;
  • and underlying medical conditions.

The center's gynecologic surgeons discuss surgical options with each patients.

Certain types of complications are more likely with conventional surgery, such as muscle injury or herniation through the site of the incision; however, all surgical procedures have risks.  Patients should ask their doctor about the various risk that comes with the type of surgery they need.  The risk of complications depends on a variety of complex factors related to the patient’s condition, the specific surgery performed, and many other variables.

Minimally invasive procedures give patients a newer option in surgery; get them home quicker; help return them to normal activities of work, family, and other obligations and pastimes faster; and save on healthcare costs.  This more-recent method of delivering surgery also enhances overall clinical care, as well as its value and cost effectiveness – and, in some cases, improves individual outcomes.  

 

The Center for Gynecology & Women’s Health has a broad focus and specialization in minimally invasive procedures:

  • The center can determine if a minimally invasive approach is right for a patient.  The staff can explain benefits of endoscopy-based procedures and operations, and explain the risks.
  • The center has treated many patients with these newer types of surgeries and can provide data on the number of times each surgeon has performed the procedure being considered.
  • The center's experienced staff of surgeons personally performs all of the procedures.
  • Center patients know their likely length of stay in the hospital, if any, and the length of time to typically recover and resume or return to school, work, exercise, sexual activity, social activities, and recreation.
  • With a staff dedicated to minimally invasive surgery, the center prides itself in its surgical team's training and success in this approach.