What Is Laparoscopic Surgery?

Laparoscopic surgery, also called minimally invasive surgery (MIS), bandaid surgery, or keyhole surgery, is a modern surgical technique in which operations in the abdomen are performed through small incisions (usually 0.5 – 1.5 cm) as opposed to the larger incisions needed in laparotomy.

Keyhole surgery makes use of images displayed on TV monitors to magnify the surgical elements.

The key element in laparoscopic surgery is the use of a laparoscope. A rigid laparoscope is attached to a camera and light source and inserted through a cannula or trocar to view the operative field. The abdomen is usually insufflated, or essentially blown up like a balloon, with carbon dioxide gas. This elevates the abdominal wall above the internal organs like a dome to create a working and viewing space. CO2 is used because it is common to mammals and can be absorbed by tissue and removed by the respiratory system. It is also non-flammable, which is important because electrosurgical devices are commonly used in laparoscopic procedures.

Why Laparoscopic Surgery?

There are a number of advantages to the patient with laparoscopic surgery versus an open procedure. These include reduced pain due to smaller incisions and hemorrhaging and shorter recovery time.

What Surgeries Can Be Done With Laparoscopy?

Irvine Veterinary Services is one of only a few veterinary hospitals in southern California that utilizes a new laparoscopic ovariohysterctomy (spay) technique that is performed through a single dime-sized incision versus the traditional two incisions. This allows female dogs down to less than 5 pounds to benefit from this surgical technique. A traditional double incision laparoscopic surgery has a minimal weight requirement of 20 pounds due to the equipment. It has been documented that laparoscopic surgery diminishes pain, reduces the risk of hemorrhaging, and faster recovery time for female dogs by up to 65 percent compared to the traditional method. Laparoscopic ovariohysterctomy is minimally invasive and safer because the entire procedure is performed through a dime-sized incision, and, while doctors view the organs via a state-of-the-art camera system, the ovaries and uterus are removed by cauterizing the blood vessels and ligaments. This procedure eliminates tearing the ovarian broad ligament off the body wall, which has been associated with the main cause of pain during and after surgery. The veterinarians at Irvine Veterinary Services have received extensive training and are excited to offer this less invasive surgical technique.

What is Bloat?

Bloat or gastric dilation-volvulus (GDV) is the number one cause of death for giant and large breeds. Bloat occurs when the stomach fills with food, water and/or gas. This causes increased pressure that enlarges and compresses the stomach and eventually causes the stomach to twist into an abnormal position. As the stomach twist, it cuts off the blood flow to and from the stomach and the organ eventually dies which quickly causes severe shock and infection within the abdomen.

What is Gastropexy?

A Gastropexy is a surgical procedure in which the stomach is tacked (sutured) to the inside body wall to prevent the stomach from twisting and turning.

What Breeds Are at Risks of Bloat?

Great Danes are the number one breed at risk, St. Bernards as #2, and Weimaraners as #3. Other breeds at high risk include: Akita, Bloodhound, Irish Setter, Irish Wolfhound, Newfoundland, Rottweiler, Standard Poodles, German Shepherd and Boxer.

Dogs over 99 pounds have a 20% risk of bloat.

For full details, please visit www.veterinarypartner.com and search ‘bloat’.

At Irvine Veterinary Services, we offer prophylactic (preventative) gastropexy using laparoscopic techniques to minimize pain, size of incision and faster recovery time versus that of a traditional surgical approach.