Thursday, July 21, 2011


Sylvan Veterinary Hospital is proud to offer our clients and patients the option of laparoscopic surgery.  Laparoscopy is a minimally invasive technique for viewing the internal structures of the abdomen.  A laparoscope (camera) inserted through a small incision in the abdomen magnifies internal structures on an enhanced video monitor for a more thorough examination.  Additional small incisions are made to facilitate the use of surgical instruments.  In human medicine, many surgical procedures are done in this manner.  In recent years laparoscopy has been adopted to offer a less traumatic and less painful alternative to traditional surgery.

                                                Laparoscopic Camera used in procedures

Laparoscopic Ovariectomy

In laparoscopic spays the procedure is performed through two small incisions in the abdomen , typically 3/16 inch in size depending on the size of the pet.  With the laparoscope we are able to perform the surgery with magnified views of the organs, allowing for greater precision and minimal complications.  The ovarian ligament is carefully cauterized rather than blindly tearing it out as in a tradition spay; this eliminates the pain your pet would experience from bruising and swelling caused by traumatic handling of the tissue. With laparoscopic spays we provide our patients a procedure resulting in 65% less pain, minimal recovery time and less trauma than with the traditional procedure.

 Any ovary being isolated before being removed during laparascopic ovariectomy

 Advantages of Laparoscopic Spays over Traditional Surgery

  1. 65% Less painful than traditional spay
  2. Smaller incisions reduce recovery time
  3. Controlled cuts eliminate pain and bruising
  4. Fewer complications
  5. Allows for excellent visualization of abdominal organs
  6. Entire surgery performed through two tiny incisions rather than a large abdominal opening which reduces chance of infection.
  7. In large breed dogs, gastropexy can be performed at the time of spay to prevent life-threatening gastric torsion.

Laparoscopic Gastropexy
Canine gastropexy is a surgical procedure performed on large breed dogs to prevent "gastric dilatation", commonly known as torsion bloat. Torsion bloat is a life-threatening condition in which the stomach flips over and expands, trapping air and gases in the stomach. Because circulation to the stomach and spleen are cut off the dog goes into shock and dies. In laparoscopic gastropexy, the stomach is tacked to the right side of the abdominal, so it cannot shift or twist. Gastropexy is an effective preventive against death from torsion bloat in large dogs. The benefits to laparascopic gastropexy are small incision, quicker recovery, less chance of infection and less pain.
 A stomach secured to the abdominal wall after laparascopic gastropexy

Laparscopic cryptorchid surgery

Dogs often times will fail to have both testicles descend to the scrotum resulting in a cryptorchid testicle.  These testicles fail to develop properly and are at higher risk for disease processes such as cancer.  In the past Veterinarians were able to remove the retained testicles by performing an exploratory surgery which often resulted in large abdominal incisions, long recovery times and increased pain.  With the use of the laparoscope the procedure has greatly improved.  The laparoscope allows the Veterinarian to insert a tiny camera into the abdomen to locate the retained testicle.  Another small incision is made over the area of the testicle and is removed with the use of small forceps thus eliminating the need for a large abdominal incision.  Patients recovery quickly with less pain and less change of infection at the surgical site.
 A retained testicle gently being isolate from the abdomen prior to removal

Laparoscopic assisted cystotomy
Cystotomy is a surgically procedure that has been traditionally performed with a sizeable incision to remove stones from the bladder. With the advancement of minimally invasive surgery for dogs and cats, a very small incision can be made to remove stones from the bladder. The Laparoscopic camera aids in visualization of the stones in the bladder where traditional cystotomy required a large bladder incision to allow for the surgeon to visualize all stones.  Laparoscopic cystotomy results in small incisions, quicker recover, less pain and reduced change of infection.
 exposed bladder during laparoscopic cystotomy

Indications for rhinoscopy are nasal discharge, chronic sneezing, and bleeding from the nose.  The laparoscope allows a magnified area of all the sinus passages to aid in diagnosing disease process, removing  foreign objects such as foxtails and collecting biopsies for sampling.

Laparoscopic Biopsies
The most common use of the laparoscope secondary to spays is to obtain minimally invasive tissue samples from the abdomen for sampling.  In the past exploratory surgeries required lengthy anesthesia, large abdominal incisions and a slow painful recovery.  With the use of the laparascopic the surgical procedure itself has been reduced to 20-30 minutes.  There are only 2-3 small ½ inch incisions necessary to obtain the samples.  In addition there is less tissue handling which results in less trauma and pain.  
 obtaining a laparoscopic liver biopsy

Monday, July 11, 2011

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