Laparoscopic surgery is a new surgical specialty which involves operating through small incisions. Typically, about 4 incisions less than 1/2 inch (10 millimeters) in length are used. Carbon dioxide gas is used to create a working space within the abdomen, but also in other areas of the body.
The word laparoscopic refers to a type of telescope used to see inside the body. The internal organs are seen by inserting a laparoscope through one of the small incisions. A tiny camera is attached to the laparoscope, which transmits the image to a television screen above the operating table. Instruments are then inserted into additional incisions to retract, cut, suture, and staple.
Laparoscopic surgery decreases the size of incisions used by surgeons resulting in less pain and scarring, a shortened hospital stay and a faster recovery compared to traditional surgical techniques. Laparoscopic surgery is sometimes called Keyhole Surgery, Band-Aid Surgery and Minimally Invasive Surgery.