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Risks Involved with Laparoscopic Gynecological Surgery

Laparoscopic gynecological surgery is an advanced alternative to open surgery and it is used in many cases, for both diagnostic and surgical procedures. The use of laparoscopy takes away the need for open abdominal and vaginal surgery. Cyst removal, tubal ligation, and hysterectomy procedures can be performed easily with this method. Normally, it is quite safe and effective as well.

But doctors and medical practitioners presume that one in every 1,000 laparoscopy patients will face complications from the surgery, and it would help to know more about the procedure so that if things go wrong you can promptly file for a negligence claim in court.

Understanding gynecological laparoscopy

Gynecological laparoscopy is described in medicine as a 'minimally invasive surgery'. It is normally used to inspect the outside of female organs such as the uterus, for detecting cysts, scar tissue, and fibroids, and for diagnosing infertility. Advancements in technology has allowed laparoscopy to replace traditional laparatomy surgeries (in which a large incision is made in the abdominal wall to reach the organs in the abdominal cavity) in various cases. Ectopic pregnancies, ovarian cystectomy, and endometriosis treatment can be carried out with laparoscopy with much finesse. The shorter recovery duration has also made it a procedure of choice for many women today.

An important step in gynecological laparoscopy is the 'insufflation'. This is done by inserting a Veress needle or a Hassan needle into the belly and then inflating them above the bowel with air so that it is easier to visualize the area that is going to be operated upon. A viewing instrument called a laparoscope is then inserted into the insufflated abdomen for diagnosis. For a surgical laparoscopy the doctor needs to make more than one incisions near the pubic hairline, and may even use a tool called a uterine manipulator to move the pelvic organs into view.

How injuries can occur in a laparoscopy treatment

There are two types of risks involved in a laparoscopy - the first step in which the Hassan needle is inserted inside the patient's body can be quite risky if not done properly. Apart from this there is also the chance of suffering from intra-operative surgical injuries which can occur once the instrument is inside the patient's body and the operating doctor is negligent in his handling of the tool.

Patients can suffer from one or many complications including suffering damage to the bowels, bladder, womb, or major blood vessels, hernia, and infection from improperly sterilized tools. In some rare cases it may happen that a doctor may need to switch from laparoscopy to an open surgery midway during the operation.

You can file for damages if you sustain any of the above mentioned injuries during a laparoscopy procedure. Apart from this, you can also sue for negligence if your doctor fails to detect internal hemorrhage during the procedure, fails to diagnose an existing disease, causes accidental sterilization, or performs a procedure for which consent has not been granted (defective consent).

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