Facing Surgery? Learn About These Minimally Invasive Techniques
As a woman, you’re always on the go, whether tending to your responsibilities at work, home or school, and everything in between. You barely have time to rest when you’re sick, let alone recover from surgery.
Fortunately, less-invasive options for a variety of gynecological and urological surgeries can have you back on your feet faster than ever. They typically offer less pain, less blood loss, a lower risk of infection and quicker recovery times. Here are several offered at Baylor Health Care System:
Laparoscopic Supracervical Hysterectomy
With this technique, surgeons make three incisions that are 1 to 2 centimeters long and remove the uterus while sparing the ovaries and cervix. A modified approach can also remove the cervix. Recovery is typically a week or two compared with four to six after traditional open surgery.
The uterus is removed through an incision in the vagina with this procedure. It is not recommended for women with an enlarged uterus or in cases in which the doctor wants to view the surrounding area. Recovery time is usually six to eight weeks.
Robotic-Assisted Laparoscopic Hysterectomy
This minimally invasive procedure is performed using the da Vinci® Surgical System. Microinstruments allow the surgeon to have precise control from a nearby console with a 3-D, magnified, high-definition screen. The typical recovery period for robotic hysterectomy is typically two to four weeks.
Suburethral Sling Surgery for Urinary Incontinence
Using two small incisions over the pelvic bone and a 1- to 2-centimeter vaginal incision, a sling made of polypropylene mesh is placed underneath the urethra to support it and promote better bladder control. Recovery time for most women usually is two to four weeks.
For women who have heavy menstrual bleeding due to uterine fibroids, endometrial ablation is an alternative to hysterectomy. The procedure, which is usually done in the office, involves burning the lining of the uterus to cut off the blood supply to the fibroids.
Recovery usually takes only a couple of days. If you’re facing surgery, ask your doctor about all your options. He or she can help you choose the one that’s right for you.