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Health Information For Parents
Minimally invasive surgery uses tiny cuts in the skin — or no cuts at all — rather than the large cuts often needed in traditional surgery.
There are many kinds of minimally invasive surgery. Each involves the surgeon using an
. This is a thin tube with a light and tiny video camera on the end. The endoscope lets the surgeon see inside the body and use very small surgical tools in the area.
Minimally invasive surgery can help patients have:
Someone having minimally invasive surgery will get anesthesia to “sleep” through the procedure. Then, the surgeon inserts the endoscope. Surgeons can put an endoscope into the body through:
Images from the endoscope are shown on monitors in the operating room so surgeons can get a clear (and magnified) view of the surgical area.
In some minimally invasive procedures, special surgical tools or instruments are inserted through other small incisions. The surgeon uses these to explore, remove, or repair a problem inside the body.
There are many different types of endoscopes. Some have tiny surgery tools on the end. Some are flexible, while others are stiff.
The kind of endoscope used depends on the surgery, and might have a different name. For example:
— for procedures done inside the colon (such as a colonoscopy)
— for surgeries inside the belly (laparoscopic surgery)
— for procedures in the chest (thoracoscopic surgery)
Sometimes during minimally invasive surgery, the surgeon might have to switch to a traditional surgery after looking inside the body. This can happen if the problem is different from what the surgeon expected.
Minimally invasive surgery usually falls into these categories:
In laparoscopy, doctors
the inside of the belly. This means they add carbon dioxide gas to create space in the abdomen, giving them a better view of the surgical area. They release the gas at the end of the procedure. Sometimes, small pockets of gas remain and can irritate the
, causing shoulder pain. This pain usually doesn’t last more than a day.
Not all procedures can (or should) be done through minimally invasive methods. Your doctor will tell you what type of surgery is best for your child. Be sure to ask about the possible risks of any procedure, as well as its benefits.
Elective surgery means you and the doctor decide when the it will happen. Many elective surgeries are important, potentially life-changing operations. Here’s how to plan for them.
Surgeries and operations happen in the operating room, sometimes called the OR. Find out more in this article for kids.
Knowing what to expect with surgery before you get to the hospital can make you less anxious about your surgical experience – and less stress helps a person recover faster.
Parents are likely to be stressed when a child is hospitalized, and questions about the people providing medical care and what roles they play can add to the confusion. Our guide can help.
Good preparation can help your child feel less anxious about getting surgery. Kids of all ages cope much better if they have an idea of what’s going to happen and why.
Knowing the basics of anesthesia may help answer your questions and ease some concerns â both yours and your child’s.
Note: All information is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.
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