Laparoscopy

This is a procedure that involves the introduction of a thin telescope-like instrument through the belly button and into the pelvis for direct visualization of the pelvic organs. Dye is sometimes injected through the cervix, and its flow traced through the fallopian tubes. Physician use laparoscopy for a variety of reasons: to check for suspected problems such as infertility, blocked or damaged tubes, scarring, ovarian tumors and uterine anomalies such as fibroids; to diagnose and treat endometriosis; to lyse (cut) adhesions that result from scarring; to remove fibroids, ovarian cysts or tumors. Laparoscopy is conducted under general anesthesia. The majority of patients do not have to stay overnight in the hospital. Mild abdominal discomfort for 1 or 2 days after the procedure is common; however, most women resume their normal activities as early as the day following the procedure. There are risks associated with laparoscopy, but they are considered minimal and/or uncommon. These risks include the following: infection, bleeding, damage to nearby organs (such as the bowel), and reaction to anesthesia. Very rarely is abdominal surgery required post-procedure, in order to take care of a complication that developed as a result of the laparoscopy.