General surgery is a surgical discipline specializing in areas of the body relevant to the abdominal cavity. General surgery most commonly pertains to procedures involving the esophagus, colon, pancreas, bile ducts, gallbladder, liver, stomach, as well as the small bowel. The thyroid gland is sometimes also included, as well as procedures involving the breast, soft tissue, trauma, hernias and the skin.
Primary Techniques Involved In General Surgery
Open surgery: An invasive surgery where a sizable incision is made into the body, providing the surgeon a larger field of vision and space in which to operate. Once the incision is made, the surgeon proceeds to carefully remove afflicted areas as needed. Open surgery often involves a 3 – 10 inches incision and can lead to a multitude of possible complications.
Laparoscopy: A procedure involving the use of small micro incisions that allow the surgeon to precisely operate on afflicted areas without having to completely open the abdominal cavity. This minimally invasive technique involves the use of small instruments and cameras that are inserted into 1cm incisions. During general procedures, blood loss is a primary concern. The use of small incisions allows the surgeon to reach areas deep within the abdominal cavity with minimal blood loss. Patients who have undergone laparoscopic surgery report on average quicker recovery and comparatively minimal scarring to the body.
General Surgery Options
- Laparoscopic Cholecystectomy
- Laparoscopic Umbilical Hernia Repair
- Laparoscopic Colon Surgery
- Laparoscopic Inguinal Hernia Repair
- Complex Incisional Hernia Repair
Due to the multiple benefits of laparoscopic procedures, many surgeons choose to utilize this minimally invasive operation over open surgery.
It is important to note that due to unexpected factors, difficulties or complications during surgery, a laparoscopic procedure may be converted into an open surgery. Please keep this in mind when considering surgical options.