Laparoscopic and Robotic HysterectomyA laparoscopic and robotic hysterectomy is a procedure that removes a woman’s uterus using a minimally invasive approach.
Hysterectomy is the surgical removal of a woman’s uterus and sometimes cervix. In some cases, the ovaries and Fallopian tubes may also be removed (hysterectomy with salpingo-oophorectomy). Traditionally, hysterectomy is performed through a large incision in the abdomen, requiring the separation of abdominal muscles and soft tissues. A laparoscopic and robotic hysterectomy, however, takes a minimally invasive approach to the procedure. A thin scope with a light and camera on the end, called a laparoscope, is used to show 3D images of the reproductive organs on a screen. In addition, the instruments used to remove the uterus are operated robotically.
Conditions Treated With Laparoscopic and Robotic Hysterectomy
A hysterectomy is recommended when problems with a woman’s uterus are not addressed with other types of treatments.
Some common conditions for which a hysterectomy may be recommended include:
- Non-cancerous uterine fibroids
- Cancerous tumors or pre-cancerous legions on the uterus, cervix or ovaries
- Uterine prolapse
- Long-term, abnormal uterine bleeding
- Chronic pelvic pain
Laparoscopic and Robotic Hysterectomy Details
A laparoscopic and robotic hysterectomy typically follows this process:
- After intravenous fluids and anesthesia are administered, the surgeon will make three to five small incisions near the belly button.
- The laparoscope and slender surgical instruments are inserted into the abdomen through the incisions and then are attached to the robotic arms of the computer.
- The surgeon moves to a separate control area to remotely operate the instruments and control the surgery.
- After being cut into small pieces, the uterus and cervix are removed through the incisions.
- When the procedure is complete, the laparoscope and instruments are removed and the incisions are sutured.
What to Expect With Laparoscopic and Robotic Hysterectomy
The procedure can last about three to four hours and you will likely stay overnight in the hospital. You’ll be prescribed medication for pain and can expect to experience vaginal bleeding for a few days or weeks following the procedure.
Laparoscopic and robotic hysterectomy is largely safe but has risks, just like any surgery. Heavy bleeding, blood clots, infection and potential damage to organs near the uterus are all possibilities. However, this minimally invasive approach to hysterectomy means that you’ll have smaller incisions, less pain and a shorter recovery compared to a traditional hysterectomy surgery.
Because hysterectomy is the complete removal of the uterus, you will no longer have a period or be able to have children.
Effectiveness of Laparoscopic and Robotic Hysterectomy
When nonsurgical treatments for pelvic floor disorders or other uterine and cervical problems fail to provide relief, laparoscopic and robotic hysterectomy is an effective option for certain candidates.
The gynecological surgeons and women’s care experts at Tampa General Hospital can help you determine if a laparoscopic and robotic hysterectomy is the right treatment for you.