Laparoscopic Surgery: Legal Definition

Laparoscopic surgery, also known as minimally invasive surgery, allows a surgeon to use specialized instruments to examine the abdomen and pelvis or remove scar tissue and implants.

During laparoscopic surgery, the surgeon makes small incisions and inserts an instrument called a “trocar.” A laparoscope and other surgical instruments pass through the trocar during the procedure.

The laparoscope, which is a thin tube with a tiny camera on one end, provides video imaging that the surgeon views on a monitor.

Prior to surgery, the abdomen is inflated with carbon dioxide to allow the surgeon a clearer view of the abdominal area. This gas also gives more space for the surgeon to use the other surgical tools.

Open Surgery vs. Laparoscopic Surgery

Open surgery is a traditional type of surgery that involves a surgeon making large incisions with a scalpel and performing the procedure through the incision.

Some medical professionals believe laparoscopic surgery has some advantages over open surgery. For one, laparoscopic surgery is minimally invasive because it uses small incisions compared to traditional surgery that uses large incisions.

When compared with traditional surgery, laparoscopic surgery allows patients to experience:

  • Reduced hospital stays
  • Decreased blood loss
  • Less pain
  • Less scarring
  • Fewer complications, such as infections and bleeding
  • Faster patient recovery time

Open surgery may be performed if complications arise during laparoscopic surgery.

Surgical Procedures That Use Laparoscopy

A variety of surgical procedures use laparoscopy, including:

  • Colonoscopy
  • Gallbladder removal
  • Hernia repair
  • Hysterectomy
  • Myomectomy
  • Removal of endometriosis or scar tissue
  • Spinal surgery
  • Cancer surgery
  • Surgery for Chron’s Disease

According to an article published in the World Journal of Methodology, improvements in surgical training and other developments have increased the safety and feasibility of laparoscopic surgery.

Laparoscopic Surgery Risks

While laparoscopic surgery is widely used for various procedures, it also carries risks.

For instance, injuries can occur when the trocar is inserted through an incision made in the skin and into the abdomen.

The initial insertion of a trocar can injure blood vessels and puncture abdominal organs, including the intestine and stomach. Patients may also experience bleeding or skin infection at the insertion site.

Patients who underwent laparoscopic surgery may also develop an incisional hernia months or years after the initial abdominal surgery.  An incisional hernia develops at an incision site made in the previous abdominal surgery.

Generally, an incisional hernia develops because of abdominal muscles that were weakened by a previous abdominal operation.

Contact the Law Offices of Ogle, Elrod & Baril, PLLC

Our firm helps individuals who suffered injuries from faulty drugs and medical devices, such as from surgical hernia mesh complications. We can help you pursue medical expenses, including costs for revision surgery, lost wages, and other damages.

Call the Law Offices of Ogle, Elrod & Baril, PLLC at 865-546-1111 to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.