Use of Laparoscopy in Hysterectomy: February 18, 2012

“We’ve been on the cutting edge in this community for many minimally invasive procedures such a laparoscopic hysterectomy,” says Dr. Larry Antonucci, Chief Operating Officer for Lee Memorial Health System.

Laparoscopy is changing the way women are getting hysterectomies by changing the way doctors approach their surgery.

“There are more and more doctors that are being trained to do it laparoscopically and that’s just because the benefit to the patient is that much more,” says Dr. Melissa Lee, an obstetrician/gynecologist with Lee Memorial Health System.

Dr. Lee was on the cutting edge of this procedure.

“Laparoscopy is the use of small cameras with small incisions and instruments that are kind of guided by the hand and you’re using a camera to see directly into the abdomen without actually fully opening the abdomen.”

The laparoscopic hysterectomy is performed through three small incisions; one in the base of the belly button and two smaller ones near the hipbone. The uterus is cut away from its blood supply, dissected, then pulled through a tube,

Instead of five-inch incisions, surgeons are working through holes about the size of your fingertip. It makes much less of an impact on the body so people heal faster and generally feel better.

“They’re able to get up and move around faster they’re able to recover faster their pain level and their need for pain medicine is much lower and so that the benefits to the patient kind of outweigh some of the more traditional approaches,” says Dr. Lee.

“Medicine changes constantly but we’ve seen an explosion of technology in the last ten years that has made it very exciting to be a part of it,” says Dr. Antonucci.

With recovery times cut in half, laparoscopy is a means to maximize technology and minimize operations.