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Minimally Invasive Surgery

Modern Surgery Using the Latest Tools & Techniques

Minimally invasive surgery isn’t just a single type of operation; rather, it is an overarching term encompassing many types of surgeries that are performed with sophisticated, less intrusive methods. Whenever possible, your surgical team will opt for a less invasive approach, especially because our advanced, state-of-the-art equipment and instruments help patients recover and heal from their operations more quickly. No matter why you require surgery, you can rely on the team at RWJBarnabas Health Medical Group to choose the best possible method personalized to your medical needs that yields favorable results.

What Is Minimally Invasive Surgery?

Also called laparoscopic surgery (and sometimes called robotic surgery in certain cases), minimally invasive surgery emerged as a safe, effective technique in the early 1980s. In the past 40 years, it has progressed to the point where it is the norm for most surgeons. The surgery uses tools and with the smallest possible incisions to access the surgery site. Instead of longer incisions used to visualize the operating area directly, surgeons use tiny surgical instruments inserted through their small incisions. A camera on a surgical tool called a laparoscope magnifies the surgical site. Not only is surgery guided by this camera, but the surgical team can view the area in greater detail because the images are displayed larger than life on the TV in the operating room.

Minimally invasive surgeries often lead to quicker healing and less post-operative pain, yet garner the same benefits as traditional surgery, otherwise. Whatever is wrong inside your body, you can rely on our team to get you back on your feet as quickly and safely as possible through minimally invasive operations geared to reduce discomfort and post-op pain.

What Are the Pros and Cons of Minimally Invasive Surgeries?

Although not all surgeries can be performed with minimally invasive techniques, the medical evidence shows the “pros” of minimally invasive surgery outweigh most cons.

Some of the many advantages of minimally invasive surgery are:

  • Smaller incisions: The size of the incisions is mere millimeters with minimally invasive surgeries. Unlike the large incisions necessary for traditional surgeries, minimally invasive techniques only require incisions long enough to insert surgical instruments and tools.
  • Less noticeable post-op scars: Because less skin is cut with the scalpel, incision scars may be hard to see, if they are visible at all.
  • Greater surgical precision: Minimally invasive surgery is renowned for its increased accuracy because of the fiberoptic camera used in these procedures. This allows the surgeon to see your internal organs in much better detail.
  • Less pain and discomfort: You should recover faster and get back to your regular routine more quickly because of the small size of the surgical incisions.
  • Less blood loss: Very tiny incisions mean less blood loss, because larger incisions can create unrelated complications that delay healing.
  • Shorter hospital stays: Very few people would say they’d like to be a hospital patient, especially if it’s for days on end. We recommend minimally invasive surgeries for these patients whenever possible, so they can go home sooner and return to work and/or school faster.
  • And more

As with any surgery, though, there are risks involved. For instance, like with traditional surgery, patients may bleed, get an infection, or have anesthesia complications. Some patients still take a lengthy time to recover and would have been better suited to traditional surgery, but we will weigh all your options with you to come to the best decision suited for your needs.

Am I Eligible for Minimally Invasive Surgery?

It depends. Not all procedures can be performed through small incisions because the operating area is too large. For example, tumor and lymph node removal for cancer patients often require a larger incision. Patients undergoing craniotomy surgery cannot have minimally invasive techniques, and sometimes total joint replacement patients cannot have minimally invasive procedures, either. Your situation will be thoroughly discussed in preparation for your surgery date, so you are fully aware of the potential risks and benefits of undergoing any type of surgery, all have some level of risk.

Minimally invasive surgery can treat many types of:

  • Spinal conditions
  • Gland removal
  • Hernia repair
  • Certain cancer surgeries
  • Ear, nose, and throat (ENT) operations
  • Gallstone surgery
  • Colorectal surgery
  • Aneurysm treatment or repair
  • Gynecologic surgery
  • Heart surgery
  • Kidney removal and/or transplant
  • Neurosurgery
  • Orthopedic operations
  • Spleen or appendix removal
  • Thoracic surgery
  • Urologic surgery
  • And more

To make an appointment with one of our surgical providers, please visit our Physician Locatorto find a provider and either make an appointment online or call the office directly or visit healthconnect.rwjbh.org/hcwebto book an appointment online.