Minimally Invasive (Laparoscopic) Surgery Clinic

Minimally Invasive (Laparoscopic) Surgery Clinic
Upstate University Hospital - Community Campus
POB North, 2B,
4900 Broad Road
Syracuse, NY 13215
Map & directions
Phone: 315 492-5036
Fax: 315 492-5477

Minimally Invasive Surgery (MIS) features exciting new technologies, all of which are aimed at improving patient's recovery after surgery and helping people return to their previous quality of life with as little disruption as possible.

This is achieved through the use of digital cameras and small incisions for access to the abdominal cavity through which many types of special instruments are inserted using ports, which usually require less than 1 cm incisions. We have special expertise in this approach, also known as a laparoscopic approach, to many common surgical problems.

Learn more about MIS procedures

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Incisional Hernia Repair

A hernia (her-nee-uh) is a weakness or tear in the wall of an organ that causes a part of that organ to squeeze through the muscle wall. An incisional hernia is a type of hernia that occurs at the site of an incision of a previous abdominal surgery.

Is surgery needed?

A hernia tends to increase in size over time and usually does not go away. There is a danger that other belly (abdominal) organs such as bowel could become stuck inside the hernia. This would require emergency surgery.

What is a laparoscopic incisional hernia repair?

A laparoscopic (lap-er-uh-skop-ic) incisional hernia repair is a type of surgery used to repair the hernia. A special device called a laparoscope is used. Small (about one inch) incisions are made to allow the insertion of the laparoscope and surgical instruments. Attached to the laparoscope is a special tiny TV camera. The surgeon can look at a magnified view of the hernia and surrounding areas on a monitor. A piece of special medical material, called mesh, is used to strengthen the weakened area of the abdominal wall. This helps prevent the hernia from recurring.

What are the benefits?

A laparoscopic hernia repair may allow you to recover faster and have less pain than traditional surgery. You can usually go home the same day of the surgery. Larger hernia repairs do require you to be admitted to the hospital for a few days.

What are the risks?

Possible risks are:

  • Infection
  • Bleeding into the belly
  • Injury to nearby structures
  • Return of the hernia

The risks are decreased as compared to traditional surgery as smaller incisions are used.

Should I do anything special to prepare for surgery?

There is no special preparation. The night before the surgery, do not eat or drink anything after midnight. Do not smoke, chew tobacco, or gum the morning of surgery. You will be contacted as to what time to arrive at the hospital the day of the surgery. Have someone drive you to and from the hospital. You will not be able to drive yourself home or take a bus or cab.

What should I expect after surgery?

You will go home the same day of your surgery for smaller size hernias repairs. Larger hernia repairs usually require as a short stay in the hospital. You can return to work and your normal routine in one to two weeks. You should avoid heavy lifting for a few weeks after your surgery. This will allow the repair to heal.

Inguinal Hernia Repair

A hernia is a weakness or tear in the wall of an organ that causes a part of that organ to squeeze through the muscle wall. An inguinal (in-gwih-null) or groin hernia is a hernia that occurs where the lower belly (abdomen) joins the legs.

Is surgery needed?

A hernia tends to increase in size over time and usually does not go away. There is a danger that other belly (abdominal) organs such as bowel could become stuck inside the hernia. This would require emergency surgery.

What is a laparoscopic inquinal hernia repair?

A laparoscopic (lap-er-uh-skop-ic) inguinal hernia repair is a type of surgery used to repair the hernia. A special device called a laparoscope is used. Small (about one inch) incisions are made to allow the insertion of the laparoscope and surgical instruments. Attached to the laparoscope is a special tiny TV camera. The surgeon can look at a magnified view of the hernia and surrounding areas on a monitor. A piece of special medical material, called mesh, is used to strengthen the weakened area of the abdominal wall. This helps prevent the hernia from recurring.

What are the benefits?

A laparoscopic hernia repair may allow you to recover faster and have less pain than traditional surgery. Another benefit is that hernias on both groins and at the belly button (umbilicus) can all be treated at the same time. You can usually go home the same of the surgery.

What are the risk?

Possible risks are:

  • Infection.
  • Bleeding into the belly
  • Injury to nearby structures.
  • Return of the hernia

The risks are decreased as compared to traditional surgery as smaller incisions are used.

Should I do anything special to prepare for surgery?

There is no special preparation. The night before the surgery, do no eat or drink anything after midnight. Do not smoke, chew tobacco, or gum the morning of surgery. You will be contacted as to what time to arrive at the hospital the day of the surgery. Have someone drive you to and from the hospital. You will not be able to drive yourself home or take a bus or cab.

What should I expect after surgery?

You will go home the same day of your surgery for smaller size hernias repairs. Larger hernia repairs usually require a short stay in the hospital. You can return to work and your normal routine in one to two weeks. You should avoid heavy lifting for a few weeks after your surgery. This will allow the repair to heal.

Colectomy

A colectomy is surgery that involves removing a part or the entire colon (large intestine or bowel). This is a surgery that is sometimes used to treat cancer of the colon, diverticulitis, or colitis.

What is a laparoscopic colectomy?

A laparoscopic (lap-er-uh-skop-ic) colectomy uses a special device called a laparoscope. Small (about one inch) incisions are made to allow the insertion of the laparoscope and surgical instruments. Attached to the laparoscope is a tiny special TV camera that allows the colon and surrounding tissue to be magnified on a monitor. The surgeon can remove the part of the colon that needs treatment.

What are the benefits?

A laparoscopic colectomy requires a shorter hospital stay, less pain after surgery, faster healing, and the ability to eat solid foods sooner after the surgery than traditional surgery. With a laparoscopic colectomy there is a minimal risk of damage to surrounding structures and organs.

What are the risks?

Possible risks are:

  • Infection
  • Bleeding
  • Injury to nearby structures and organs
  • Leakage of bowel contents at the surgery site.

Will I need any tests before surgery?

Your doctor may order a colonoscopy and some blood tests. A colonoscopy is an exam of the colon using a slim, flexible, lighted tube called a colonoscope. The doctor can get a clear, magnified view of the inside of your colon. Depending on your health, some additional tests may be ordered.

How should I prepare for surgery?

The night before the surgery, you will be required to take a special medicine that clears your colon of any contents. This lessens the risk of infection. You will not be able to eat or drink anything after midnight the night before the surgery. Do not smoke, chew tobacco or gum the morning of surgery. You will be contacted as to what time to arrive at the hospital on the day of surgery. Bring any comfort items from home that you may need for a short hospital stay.

What should I expect after surgery?

The usual hospital stay is three to five days. While in the hospital, you will be on a clear liquid diet until you begin passing gas (flatus). Sometimes a urinary catheter is needed for a few days. Most people return to their normal level of activity in about two to three weeks. Heavy lifting is to be avoided for a few weeks after the surgery.

Nissen Fundoplication

What is heartburn?

Heartburn, also called gastroesophageal reflux or GERD, is a condition where the acids in the stomach back up into the esophagus. The esophagus is the tube that carries food from the back of your mouth to your stomach. At the lower end of the esophagus there is a small ring of muscle that acts as a one-way valve. When there is a problem with the value, stomach contents can back-up or "reflux" into the esophagus. Because stomach contents are acidic in nature, this reflux causes a burning sensation.

What are some treatment options for GERD?

Making changes in your life style, taking medicines and surgery are the treatments for GERD. Lifestyle changes that improve GERD include weight loss, smoking cessation, reduced alcohol intake, and dietary changes such as a low fat, low caffeine diet. Medications that are used to treat GERD include over-the-counter antacids and medicines such as NexiumTM, Prevacid® and Protonix®. Surgery becomes an option when the medicines fail to work or become intolerable due to side effects.

What is a laparoscopic fundoplication?

The surgery strengthens the "valve" between the stomach and the esophagus. This is achieved by wrapping the upper part of the stomach or fundus) around the lower esophageal sphincter. This surgical procedure is called a fundoplication. A fundoplication can be performed as an open procedure or as a laparoscopic surgery. A laparoscopic fundoplication means that a surgeon will perform the operation with the use several small incisions, special instruments, and a videoscope and TV monitors.

What are the advantages of having this type of surgery?

Laparoscopic fundoplication requires a shorter hospital stay, less pain, and leaves less noticeable scars in comparison to the traditional surgery.

What are the risks?

Possible risks are infection and injury to nearby organs. The risks are minimized as compared to traditional surgery as smaller incisions are used.

Will I need any tests before surgery?

Your doctor may order an upper endoscopy, 24-hour pH monitoring, and an esophageal motility study.

How should I prepare for surgery?

The night before your surgery, do not eat or drink anything after midnight. The morning of your surgery, do not smoke, chew tobacco or gum. You will be contacted as to what time to arrive at the hospital on the day of surgery. Bring any comfort items from home that you may need for a brief hospital stay.

What should I expect after surgery?

The usual hospital stay is usually three to five days. Some patients may need to stay longer. You will be given medications to help prevent hiccups and nausea. You will be on a clear liquid diet and advanced gradually to solid foods. Sit upright when you eat and remain upright for at least 20 minutes after eating. The dietician will talk to you about the best diet for you. Most people return to their normal level of activity in about two to three weeks.

Cholecystectomy

The gallbladder is a small sac-like digestive organ on the right side of your upper abdomen. This organ stores bile. Bile is used in the digestion of foods, especially fats. Sometimes small stones called gallstones may form. The gallstones can cause a blockage of the ducts that carries bile from the gallbladder to the small intestine. If the duct remains blocked for a period of time, severe damage or infection can occur. When these stones cause symptoms surgery may be needed.

Symptoms often include pain beneath the ribs and nausea that lasts several hours after eating a fatty meal. Even with the gallbladder removed, bile is still delivered to the small intestine through the ducts and digestion of food.

What is a laparoscopic cholecystectomy?

A laparoscopic (lap-er-uh-skop-ic) cholecystectomy is a type of surgery used to remove the gallbladder. A special device called a laparoscope is used. Small (about one inch) incisions are made to allow the insertion of the laparoscope and surgical instruments. Attached to the laparoscope is a special tiny TV camera. The surgeon removes the gallbladder by looking at a magnified view of the gallbladder and surrounding areas on a monitor.

What are the advantages of having this type of surgery?

A laparoscopic cholecystectomy usually allows you to recover faster, have less scarring and have less pain than traditional surgery. You also will have a shorter hospital stay or go home the same day as the surgery.

What are the risks?

Possible risks are bleeding and infection. Because the bile duct is close to the gallbladder, there is a risk (less than 1 percent) of an injury occurring to the bile duct that could require additional surgery.

Will I need any tests before surgery?

Your doctor will order blood tests and an ultrasound. You may need an additional procedure by a gastroenterologist if the stones are blocking some of the ducts draining the liver either before or after removal of the gallbladder.

How should I prepare for surgery?

The night before your surgery, do not eat or drink anything after midnight. Do not smoke, chew tobacco or gum the morning of your surgery. You will be contacted as to what time to arrive at the hospital on the day of surgery. Have someone drive you to and from the hospital. You will not be able to drive yourself home or take a bus or cab alone.

What should I expect after surgery?

Usually, you will be able to go home the same day. In some cases, you may need to stay overnight. You should be able to return to your normal activities and work within one to two weeks.

Splenectomy

The spleen is a small fist-sized organ that is located in the upper left side of your belly (abdomen). This organ helps fight infection, stores blood, and gets rid of old red blood cells. A splenectomy is surgical removal of the spleen. A splenectomy is sometimes used for some blood diseases, a tumor, or because of an injury to your spleen.

What is a laparoscopic splenectomy?

A laparoscopic (lap-er-uh-skop-ic) splenectomy is a type of surgery used to remove the spleen. A special device called a laparoscope is used. Small (about one inch) incisions are made to allow the insertion of the laparoscope and surgical instruments. Attached to the laparoscope is a special tiny TV camera. The surgeon removes the spleen by looking at a magnified view of the spleen and surrounding areas on a monitor.

What are the benefits?

A laparoscopic splenectomy requires a shorter hospital stay, less pain after surgery, have less scarring and faster healing than traditional surgery. With a laparoscopic splenectomy there is minimal risk of damage to surrounding structures.

What are the risks?

The possible risks are:

  • Infection
  • Bleeding
  • Injury to nearby structures and organs.

Will I require any tests before surgery?

Your doctor may order blood work and a CT scan or ultrasound of your abdomen.

How should I prepare for surgery?

The body's immune system is weakened with the removal of the spleen. As a safeguard you will receive vaccinations before surgery. The night before your surgery, do not eat or drink anything after midnight. Do not smoke, chew tobacco or gum the morning of your surgery. You will be contacted as to what time to arrive at the hospital on the day of surgery. You may want to bring some comfort items from home for your brief hospital stay.

What should I expect after surgery?

The usual hospital stay is one to two days. Some patients may need to stay longer. After surgery, you will need to take special medicines. It is important that you take these medicines as ordered by your doctor. You will be able to return to work and your normal routine in two to three weeks. Avoid heavy lifting for a few weeks.

Donor Nephrectomy

Donor nephrectomy (nef-rek-tuh-mee) is surgery to remove a kidney from a person willing to donate a kidney to a relative or friend who has kidney failure. The kidney is removed and then immediately transplanted into the recipient individual.

Who can be a donor?

A donor must be in good general health. Donors must not suffer from high blood pressure, cancer, diabetes, morbid obesity, kidney disease or heart disease. The age of a kidney donor is between 18 and about 60 years of age. The donor and the recipient need to have compatible blood types. It is very important that potential donors understand exactly what the procedure involves, including testing, surgery, recovery period and possible risks.

How will donating a kidney affect my lifestyle?

A person can live a normal life with one kidney. Donating a kidney does not shorten your life span or increase your risk of disease. Deciding to be a living donor can be very rewarding and truly is giving the "gift of life".

Does Insurance cover the cost?

In most cases, the recipient's insurance covers the donor's medical costs. Exactly what is covered will need to be verified as coverage varies with each type of insurance.

What type of surgery is performed?

Until recently, the surgery involved removing the kidney by a large incision, about 10-12 inches in length. This surgery usually results in an extended hospital stay, is fairly painful, and requires a long recovery period.

There is now another option performed at Upstate Medical University. The option is a laparoscopic donor nephrectomy. With this type of surgery a special device called a laparoscope is used. Small (about one inch) incisions are made to allow the insertion of the laparoscope and surgical instruments. Attached to the laparoscope is a special tiny TV camera. The surgeon removes the kidney by looking at a magnified view of the kidney and surrounding areas on a monitor.

What are the benefits?

The benefits are:

  • Fewer complications.
  • Less pain.
  • Smaller, less noticeable scars.
  • Decreased length of hospital stay of 3 days from 5 to 8 days.

What are the risks?

Possible risks are:

  • Infection
  • Bleeding
  • Injury to nearby structures and organs

Will I need any tests before surgery?

Several tests are performed to ensure that you are a compatible donor for the recipient. These tests include blood tests, tissue-typing, cross matching the donor's cells with that of the recipient's, a computerized tomography (CT) scan, a chest X-ray and an electrocardiogram (ECG). The surgeon will need your medical history. This needs to be as accurate as possible. Omitting parts of your medical history could lead to organ rejection in the recipient. All information is kept confidential.

How should I prepare for surgery?

You will be admitted to the hospital the day before your surgery. Bring comfort items, such as deodorant and toothpaste, for a brief hospital stay. The night before your surgery, you will not be allowed to drink or eat anything after midnight.

What should I expect after surgery?

The usual hospital stay is two to three days. Most people return to their normal level of activity in about one to two weeks. Avoid lifting very heavy objects for six weeks after donating.

Adrenalectomy

What is the adrenal gland?

The adrenal gland is a small gland that sits on top of the kidneys that secretes many different types of hormones that affect many different parts of the body. Sometimes the gland can become diseased requiring its removal.

What is a laparoscopic adrenalectomy?

A laparoscopic adrenalectomy is a procedure in which a surgeon uses several small incisions, special instruments, a video-scope and TV monitors to remove the adrenal gland.

What are the benefits of having my adrenal gland removed laparoscopically?

The adrenal gland can be removed in two ways. Conventional (or open surgery) is generally is more painful compared with a laparoscopic adrenalectomy and requires a longer hospital stay as well as more time to heal.

What are the risks involved with this surgery?

As with any surgery, there is a risk of bleeding, infection, and damage to surrounding structures and organs. If this occurs, the surgeon may need to extend the incision to repair or prevent further damage.

Will I require any tests before my surgery?

Your doctor may order blood work and a CT scan or ultrasound of your abdomen.

Should I do anything special to prepare for my surgery?

Before your surgery, you will be advised as to where and when to arrive the day of your procedure. The night before your surgery, do not eat or drink anything after midnight. Do not smoke, chew tobacco or gum the morning of your surgery. You may want to bring some comfort items from home for your brief hospital stay.

How long will I be in the hospital? When will I be able to return to work?

You will stay in the hospital approximately one to two days. Occasionally, some patients stay longer. You will be able to return to work and your normal routine in two to three weeks. Avoid heavy lifting for a few weeks. After your surgery, you will be placed on medications. It is important that you take these medications as prescribed by your doctor.

Small Bowel Resection

Indications for laparoscopic small bowel resection are usually for diseases such as Crohn's disease which often involves repeated episodes of inflammation and scarring which can affect any part of the gastrointestinal tract. It most often affects the small bowel. Unfortunately, surgery is not considered curative and most patients who have Crohn's disease will require at least one if not more than one operation in their lifetime.

Surgery is recommended when therapy with medication no longer appears to be helping. The benefits of this procedure are a shorter hospital stay, a quicker return to eating solid foods, less pain after surgery, and faster healing. Also, less scar tissue develops after a laparoscopic bowel resection which generally makes additional surgery less complicated. Other indications for laparoscopic bowel resection may involve scar tissue from previous surgery.

What is a laparoscopic small bowel resection? What are the benefits of this procedure?

A laparoscopic small bowel resection is a procedure in which a surgeon uses several small incisions, special instruments, a videoscope with a TV monitor to remove a section of the small bowel. The benefits of this procedure are a shorter hospital stay, quicker return to eating solid foods, less pain after surgery, and faster healing.

What are the risks of this procedure?

As with any surgery, there is the risk of bleeding, infection and damage to surrounding structures and organs and a leak at the site of the bowel anastomosis. With laparoscopic surgery, the risk of damage to surrounding structures and organs is minimal and is certainly no greater than open surgery.

Will I need any tests before my surgery?

Your doctor may order a contrast study or abdominal CT scan and some blood work. Depending on your state of health, some additional tests may be ordered.

How should I prepare for my surgery?

The night before your surgery, you will be required to take a prescribed "bowel preparation". This clears your colon of any contents and lessens the risk of infection. Specific information about the bowel prep will be given to you at your clinic appointment. You should not eat or drink anything after midnight. Do not smoke, chew tobacco or gum the morning of your surgery. You will be contacted to advise of where and when to arrive at the hospital on the day of surgery. Bring any comfort items from home that you may need for a short hospital stay.

How long will I be in the hospital? When will I be able to return to work?

You will be in the hospital three to five days. Occasionally, some patients stay longer. You will be able to return to work and your normal routine in approximately two to three weeks. You should avoid heavy lifting for a few weeks after your surgery.

What should I expect after my surgery?

While in the hospital, you will be on a clear liquid diet until you begin passing flatus (gas). In some instances, you may have a urinary catheter for a few days. You will receive information specific to your diagnosis. This may include dietary needs, explanations of follow-up care, and other treatment options.

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