The Australian & New Zealand College of Obstetricians & Gynaecologists (RANZCOG) & the Australian Gynaecological Endoscopic Society (AGES) have developed specific criteria regarding the level of credentialinga specialist gynaecological surgeon in laparoscopy must achieve before performing complex operations. For example, only a Level 6 Credentialed Surgeon should perform operations for complex Stage 4 Endometriosis.
Almost all major operations can be performed by Laparoscopy, including Hysterectomy (removal of the womb), Myomectomy (removal of fibroids), Excision of Endometriosis and repair of Prolapse.
Laparoscopic Surgery is performed under general anaesthesia. Tiny incisions are made in the patient’s abdomen to perform the surgery.
Gas (carbon dioxide) is used to expand the abdominal cavity so Dr Nikam & A/Professor Chan can perform laparoscopy with a pencil-thin instrument called a laparoscope. It has a powerful light and a miniature camera that sends images of the surgical field to a high definition video monitor above the operating table.
The tiny incisions are usually placed through the umbilicus (belly button) for the laparoscope and additional accessory incisions in the abdomen are utilized, allowing slim operative instruments to be inserted.
Laparoscopy is used to diagnose and treat many different gynaecological conditions. At the conclusion of the surgery, the instruments are withdrawn, the gas released and the tiny incisions are closed with dissolvable sutures or skin glue (no sutures) below the skin
Laparoscopy is called minimally invasive surgery because the incisions are small (5mm – 12mm). Other non-technical names for the procedure are “Keyhole Surgery” and “Belly Button Surgery”.
There is good evidence from medical research that a Laparoscopic technique has significant benefits for the patient (compared with traditional Open Laparotomy approach). It has been proven. These benefits include:
- Reduced post-surgical pain
- Reduced risk of infections and wound complications
- Reduced risk of post-operative adhesions
- Reduced risk of incisional hernia
- Increased comfort following surgery
- Reduced need for analgesia & pain relief
- Reduced hospital stay
- Faster return to normal physical activities
- Faster return to work
- Improved cosmesis
Most patients can be discharged on the same-day or next-day and can return to their normal lives much more quickly than after an open (laparotomy) surgery procedure.
The surgeon’s experience and level of training plays a crucial role in deciding whether Operative Laparoscopy or Laparotomy should be performed. While most surgeries can be done safely by Laparoscopy, some surgeries are better suited via the open approach, especially when cancer of the pelvic organs is suspected.
Every patient is different and has different goals – at AEVAFEM, we discuss all relevant approaches and ensure that you are a part of the decision-making process so we can achieve the best possible outcome.