Minimally Invasive Surgery – 1

I hope everyone is having a great weekend! The next series of topics is join got focus on minimally invasive procedures. This is of particular interest of mine. There are multiple implications of this terms, I am going to focus on laparascopy, thoracoscopy and arthroscopy.

As medicine advances in both the human and veterinary world, we are starting to do more with less. What I mean is that through smaller incisions and better technology we address more and more surgical problems. The benefit of this is shorter hospital stays, decreased complication rte, decreased infection rates, and decreased soft tissue trauma and post-surgical pain. We are very lucky to have all this new technology available to us.

Here is a definition of the terms:

Laparascopy: Abdominal surgery being performed with a scope/camera via a small portal incision. Multiple other portals are made to introduce instruments. All procedures are performed within the abdominal cavity. Laparoscopic-assisted means that part of the procedure is done with cameras within the body cavity and part is done via small incisions outside of the abdomen.

Thoracoscopy: Same definition as above, however this pertains to the chest or thorax. This is a very useful modality and is used to treat various cardiac, pulmonary (lung) and esophageal problems.

Arthroscopy: Same definition as above, however this is performed on the joints. This is a very common use in veterinary medicine and is thought to be the gold standard in joint evaluation. The most common joints evaluated through this are the elbows, shoulders and knees, however the wrists (carpi), ankles (hocks/tarsi), and hips can be evaluated. Just think, if you have an ACL injury, it is very common for you to have your knee scoped, why not your best friend?

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