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Abdominal & Groin Hernia Repair

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What is Laparoscopic/Minimally Invasive Surgery for Hernia Repair?

Laparoscopic surgery, or minimally invasive surgery (MIS), is a modern surgical technique in Singapore that helps surgeons perform surgical procedures, such as repairing abdominal and groin hernias with smaller incisions, compared to traditional open surgery. 

Hernia is a condition where an internal organ or tissue protrudes through a weak spot or tear in the surrounding muscle or connective tissue. If left untreated, hernias can result in pain, discomfort, and potentially severe complications. 

Abdominal and groin hernias result from weakened muscles in the abdominal or groin regions. These hernias are usually caused by common factors that can elevate intra-abdominal pressure, such as heavy lifting, chronic coughing, obesity, and pregnancy. 

The weakened tissues allow internal organs to protrude; hence, individuals may require a surgical repair to relieve pain and prevent complications. The primary objective of hernia repair surgery is to reposition the displaced tissue or organ and reinforce the weakened area to minimise the risk of recurrence. 

Abdominal hernia
An abdominal hernia occurs when an organ or tissue protrudes through a weakened area in the abdominal wall.

How does Laparoscopic/Minimally Invasive Surgery work? 

Laparoscopy involves making small incisions, usually less than 1.5 centimetres, in the body to access and treat various medical conditions. A laparoscope, a thin tube with a camera and light source, is inserted through one of these incisions, providing a clear, magnified view of the internal organs on a video monitor. 

Specialised instruments are inserted through the other small incisions to perform the procedure. After the procedure, the surgeon closes these small incisions with stitches or surgical glue, and the surgery usually causes minimal scarring. 

laparoscopic surgery
A surgeon uses specialised instruments to perform laparoscopic surgery to ensure minimal scarring.

Benefits of laparoscopic/minimally invasive surgery

  • Smaller incisions
  • Reduced post-operative pain
  • Faster recovery
  • Shorter hospital stays
  • Minimum scarring
  • Lower risk of infection
  • Improved cosmesis
  • Enhanced visualisation for surgeons
  • Reduced blood loss
Post-surgery recovery 
Patients experience quicker recovery following laparoscopic surgery than traditional open surgery.

What conditions can laparoscopic/minimally invasive surgery treat?

Laparoscopic and minimally invasive surgery can treat various medical conditions, such as: 

  • Abdominal and groin hernia repair: laparoscopic technique can treat both inguinal (groin) and ventral (abdominal wall) hernias. 
  • Gallbladder removal (cholecystectomy): a laparoscopic procedure known as cholecystectomy that treats gallbladder issues, typically caused by gallstones.
  • Appendectomy: acute appendicitis can also be treated through laparoscopic surgery. 
  • Gastrointestinal conditions: laparoscopy can help treat acute and chronic gastrointestinal conditions, including gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), achalasia, and Crohn's disease, among others.
  • Gynaecological issues: minimally invasive surgery can help with surgical procedures such as hysterectomy, endometriosis treatment, and uterine fibroids removal.
  • Urological conditions: laparoscopic surgery can also treat conditions like kidney or adrenal gland disorders and certain prostate conditions. 
  • Bariatric surgery: minimally invasive procedures like gastric bypass or sleeve gastrectomy can be performed to assist with weight loss.
  • Thoracic and cardiac surgery: minimally invasive techniques can be used to treat some cardiac and lung procedures. 
  • Orthopaedic surgery: in certain cases, such as arthroscopy, minimally invasive techniques are performed for joint and bone surgeries.
  • ENT (Ear, Nose, Throat) procedures: minimally invasive surgery is often used in tonsillectomy, sinus surgery, and more.
  • Cancer surgery: in some cases, minimally invasive techniques are utilised for cancer surgery, depending on the type and stage of the cancer (link to adrenal cancer service page)
  • Liver and pancreas surgery: conditions affecting the liver and pancreas may be treated using laparoscopic surgery. 

The applicability of laparoscopic and minimally invasive surgery usually depends on the patient’s overall health condition and disease severity. 

If you suffer from abdominal and groin hernia, please schedule an appointment with ACE Specialist Surgery and Endoscopy for laparoscopic or minimally invasive and personalised treatment options tailored to your needs.

What results can I expect? 

After hospital admission, you will undergo pre-operative preparations, including essential checks and anaesthesia administration. After the procedure, you will receive post-operative care, which involves monitoring in a recovery area and pain management. 

Depending on the specific surgery and circumstances, your hospital stay may vary; however, most patients are usually discharged on the same day. Essential post-operative precautions include following diet, reducing activity level for a few days, and incision care instructions to ensure a smooth and successful recovery process. 

Patients can generally expect reduced post-operative pain and return to normal activities relatively quickly, often within a few weeks. However, your surgeon will provide personalised guidance on your expected recovery time. 

How many laparoscopic surgery sessions are needed?

The number of laparoscopic surgery sessions needed varies depending on the severity of the condition. A single laparoscopic surgery session is sufficient for most patients to treat their condition effectively. 

Patients with gallbladder removal or hernia repair procedures usually require only one surgery session. However, more complex medical conditions or cases with complications may result in additional sessions or interventions. 

What are the potential risks of laparoscopic or minimally invasive surgery?

While generally safe, risks can include infection, bleeding, or injury to nearby structures. Your surgeon will discuss these with you before the procedure.

How long does a typical laparoscopic surgery last?

The duration of surgery varies depending on the specific procedure; however, most laparoscopic surgeries are completed within a few hours. 

Is laparoscopic and minimally invasive surgery painful?

Laparoscopic and minimally invasive surgeries are generally associated with less post-operative pain compared to traditional open surgery. However, your healthcare team will provide appropriate pain management options to minimise pain during recovery.

Can everyone undergo laparoscopic surgery, or are there specific eligibility criteria?

Not all patients or conditions are suitable for minimally invasive surgery. Usually, a healthcare professional determines the eligibility on a case-by-case basis. 

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