Unlike traditional open surgery, in which the physician makes a long incision to access the anatomy, minimally invasive surgery uses small incisions, resulting in faster recovery and less pain for the patient.
In general surgery, minimally invasive surgeries are often performed laparoscopically, using a laproscope, a small telescope that is inserted into the abdomen through a small incision. The laproscope enables the surgeon to view the anatomy, and tiny surgical instruments are inserted through other small incisions to repair the problem.
"We're able to offer patients even smaller incisions or no incisions to perform a traditional surgery that requires several or larger incisions," says general surgeon Dr. Richard Bloomberg. Watch our one-minute interview with Dr. Bloomberg below to learn more.
Some general surgeries may be performed using a single incision, potentially resulting in no visible scarring.
Click here to learn about Single Incision Laparoscopic Surgery and watch a video of Dr. Kenneth Eckhert, III, MD, a general surgeon at Mercy Hospital and chair of Mercy's Robotics Committee.
Kenneth Eckhert, III, MD, a general surgeon and chairman of Mercy Hospital’s Robotic Committee, is among the very first surgeons in the United States and the first in Western New York to perform a robotic-assisted cholecystectomy (gallbladder removal surgery) using a single incision through the belly button.
Eckhert removed the gallbladder in 60 minutes and the patient returned home five hours later.
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