Pelvic laparoscopy - Overview
Celioscopy; Band-aid surgery; Pelviscopy; Gynecologic laparoscopy; Exploratory laparoscopy - gynecologic
Definition of Pelvic laparoscopy:
Pelvic laparoscopy is a surgical procedure that examines and treats pelvic organs through a small surgical viewing instrument (laparoscope) inserted into the abdomen at the navel.
While you are deep asleep and pain-free under general anesthesia, the doctor makes a half-inch surgical cut in the skin below the belly button. Carbon dioxide gas is pumped into the abdomen to help the doctor see the organs more easily.
The laparoscope, an instrument that looks like a small telescope with a light and a video camera, is inserted so the doctor can view the area.
Other instruments may be inserted through other small cuts in the lower abdomen. While watching a video monitor, the doctor is able to:
- Get tissue samples (biopsy)
- Look around and diagnose the cause of any symptoms
- Remove scar tissue or other abnormal tissue, such as from endometriosis
- Repair or remove part or all of the ovaries or tubes
- Repair or remove parts of the uterus
- Do other surgical procedures (such as appendectomy, removing lymph nodes)
After the laparoscopy, the carbon dioxide gas is released, and the surgeon closes the cuts with stitches.
The average time of surgery depends on the procedure performed.
Why the Procedure Is Performed:
Laparoscopy may prevent the need for a large surgical cut in the abdomen and a longer hospital stay. There is less blood loss with laparoscopic surgery and less pain in the first several weeks after surgery.
Pelvic laparoscopy is used both for diagnosis and treatment. It may be recommended for:
- An abnormal pelvic mass or ovarian cyst found on pelvic ultrasound
- Cancer (ovarian, endometrial, or cervical) in order to:
- Look for spread of the cancer and perform a biopsy (called staging)
- Remove lymph nodes or pelvic organs
- Chronic (long-term) pelvic pain, if no other cause has been found
- Evaluating and treating infertility
- Removing the uterus (hysterectomy)
- Removing uterine fibroids (myomectomy)
- Sterilization (tubal ligation)
- Sudden, severe pelvic pain (may be caused by twisting of an ovary, appendicitis, perforation of the uterus, or salpingitis)
- Surgically treating a tubal pregnancy
- Uterine tissue found outside the uterus in the abdomen (endometriosis)
- Reviewed last on: 2/21/2010
- Susan Storck, MD, FACOG, Chief, Eastside Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Group Health Cooperative of Puget Sound, Redmond, Washington; Clinical Teaching Faculty, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Washington School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.
Katz VL. Diagnostic procedures, imaging, endometrial sampling, endoscopy: Indications and contraindications. In: Katz VL, Lentz GM, Lobo RA, Gershenson DM, eds. Comprehensive Gynecology. 5th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Mosby; 2007: chap 11.
DeSimone CP, Ueland FR. Gynecologic laparoscopy. Surg Clin North Am. 2008;88:319-341.
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