The History and Development of Minimally Invasive (Laparoscopic) Surgery
In early 1990, gallbladder surgery underwent a revolutionary change. Surgeons began to perform gallbladder removal with a known technique called laparoscopy. During this procedure, surgeons inflate the belly with carbon dioxide gas and make four very small incisions through which they could place cannulas or sturdy metal straws. Cameras and long instruments were then used to cut, sew, and clip so that the gallbladder could be placed in a bag and safely removed from the belly. It was with this technique that the laparoscopic revolution was born.
Over the past 22 years, laparoscopy has been applied to almost every type of specialty and surgery. These techniques are better known as minimally invasive surgery.
Despite its advances, minimally invasive surgery continued to improve. The issues of incisions and ease of surgery have progressed even beyond what has been imagined.
Several new advances have now taken the forefront of our interest. Single-incision surgery which, as it sounds, is the most cosmetically appealing procedure. The one scar may be hidden in the belly button so that it remains unseen to the unknowing eye. It is hard to imagine that a bikini can be worn by a woman with no visible scar.
Robotic surgery offers technical advances that make surgery easier for the surgeon to perform with better visualization and 3-dimensional vision. It is safer than open or laparoscopic techniques in many instances.
At the forefront of the future of minimally invasive surgery is the single incision Robot. Through one incision we now have the ability to perform a gallbladder removal. It is expected that Norwalk will be a center for single incision robotic surgery.
A Leader in Laparoscopic Surgery
Our surgeons are pioneers who continue to lead the way in introducing the most advanced laparoscopic surgical techniques. Dr. Neil Floch, Director of Minimally Invasive Surgery at Norwalk Hospital, personally designed and instituted the first two advanced minimally invasive operating rooms in Fairfield County. Dr. Craig Floch, Dr. Peter Ingraldi and Dr. Abe Fridman, along with Dr. Neil Floch, are all expertly trained to provide the highest level of quality care for laparoscopic surgery.
Laparoscopic surgery, or minimally invasive as it is often referred to, is a highly specialized technique for performing surgical procedures. The operation is performed through several small incisions as opposed to one large one. There are several advantages to the patient undergoing laparoscopic surgery compared with an open procedure. Generally, there is less pain and bleeding, a shorter recovery time, less scarring and a reduced risk of infection because of the reduced exposure of internal organs to possible external contaminants.
Laparoscopic surgery is performed using several small incisions, usually 0.5-1.5 cm. each, instead of one large incision. Each incision is called a port. A tubular instrument known as a trochar is inserted into each port. Specialized instruments and a special camera known as a laparoscope are passed through the trochars. Carbon dioxide is infused into the abdomen at the beginning of the procedure. This provides the surgeon with a working and viewing area. Images are transmitted through the laparoscope from the abdominal cavity to high-resolution video monitors in the operating room, enabling the surgeon to view detailed images of the abdomen, negating the need for the traditional large incisions.
A Leader in Single Incision Surgery
You will no longer have to require multiple incisions, visible scars and long recovery times with the availability of single-incision surgery currently performed by our surgeons. Our surgeons are performing single incision surgery for the removal of the gallbladder (Cholecystectomy). This provides a cosmetic advantage since it only requires a small, single incision in the patient’s belly button as opposed to traditional gallbladder surgery which requires a large opening in the abdomen. It also has an advantage over laparoscopic surgery which requires multiple small incisions in the abdomen. The patient experiences less pain because of a single incision instead of multiple incisions. Traditional surgery generally requires a hospital stay with recovery times ranging from days to a week. Single-incision surgery patients go home the day of surgery and resume normal activity as soon as they feel up to it.