What is a laparoscopic splenectomy?
A laparoscopic splenectomy is a procedure in which a surgeon uses several small incisions, special instruments, a videoscope and TV monitors to remove the spleen.
What are the benefits of having my spleen removed laparoscopically?
The spleen can be removed in two ways: via conventional open surgery or laparoscopically. An open procedure is more painful, compared with a laparoscopic splenectomy, and requires a longer hospital stay and more time to heal.
What are the risks involved with this surgery?
As with any surgery, there is a risk of bleeding, infection, and damage to surrounding structures and organs. If this occurs, the surgeon may need to extend the incision to repair or prevent further damage.
Will I require any tests before my surgery?
Your doctor may order blood work and a CT scan or ultrasound of your abdomen.
Should I do anything special to prepare for my surgery?
Before your surgery, you will receive vaccinations. A nurse will call you the evening before your surgery with information on when to come to the hospital and where to register for your surgery. The night before your surgery, do not eat or drink anything after midnight. Do not smoke or chew tobacco or gum the morning of your surgery. You may want to bring some comfort items from home for your brief hospital stay.
How long will I be in the hospital? When will I be able to return to work?
You will stay in the hospital approximately one to two days. Occasionally, some patients stay longer. You will be able to return to work and your normal routine in two to three weeks. Avoid heavy lifting for a few weeks. After your surgery, you will be placed on medications. It is important that you take these medications as prescribed by your doctor.