Professor MD MD hc Guido Schumacher
Abdominal surgery includes a wide range of visceral operations for organs in the abdomen. Mostly it involves the opening of abdominal cavity but today laparoscopic approach which is minimally invasive surgery is growing popular more and more. Every type of abdominal surgery is named after the organ dealing with as liver surgery, pancreas surgery, stomach surgery, kidney surgery, appendectomy etc. It also includes treating different type of hernias, caesarean section, explorative laparotomy, and abdominoplasty. In Clinic of Braunschweig we offer comprehensive surgical service involving General Surgery Department, Accident Surgery Department, as well as Plastic and Aesthetic Surgery Department.
Hernia is a quite common condition which is characterized with protrusion of the organ or piece of tissue through the opening in the muscle. It normally occurs as results of related muscle weakening. There are also postoperative hernias that can develop on scars after previous surgeries. Hernias are treated with surgery at acute cases.
The common types of abdominal wall hernias are:
The first two cases are also referred as groin hernias, while epigastric hernia is a bulging in diaphragm area that is mostly a congenital condition. Umbilical hernia, which is a lump pushing out near the navel area, mostly occurs in babies below 6 months.
Abdominal surgery specialists often can recommend “watchful waiting” before considering on invasive treatment of hernia in cases when the disorder is asymptomatic and does not cause much inconvenience to the patient. Urgent surgery is undoubtedly recommended when hernia is incarcerated or strangulated.
The majority (more than 70%) of abdominal operations for hernia treatment are inguinal hernia surgeries. Mostly men are prone to the disease. When surgery is considered there are two ways to perform it:
With open approach an abdominal surgeon makes large incision in the abdominal wall to access a site of the operation. There are several types of incision and which of them to prefer depends on numerous factors including diagnosis and urgency:
Here this list is not exhaustive and experienced surgeon always chooses a type fitting to the patient’s situation.
Laparoscopy is a sparing method of penetration into abdomen to explore the inner situation for diagnosis or perform the surgery with maximal preservation of tissues. It is also called keyhole or minimally invasive surgery (MIS). Instead of one large incision the surgeon used 3-4 0.5-1.0 cm cuts that are used for introducing of a telescopic lit camera and special surgical instrument. The surgeon observes the sight of operation on the monitor and distantly manipulate with the tools inside of the abdomen.
Laparoscopic abdominal surgery is widely used for choletystectomy (gallbladder surgery), kidney repair or removal, appendectomy, hernia repair surgery, and others. The latest achievement in the field of MIS is using of the newest robotic systems. In this case, a team of specialists only control the process via computer while all the manipulations are done by machine.
Abdominoplasty, or abdominal correction it is cosmetic surgery for your tummy to make it thinner and smother. It includes skin removal and liposculpture which is correction of the stomach shape.
Deciding on surgery extent an abdominoplasty surgeon always evaluate the individual situation of and takes into consideration patient’s wishes. Liposuction and lower body lift also may be included.
Invasion into abdomen is quite serious issue and you need some time for recovery after abdominal surgery. With laparoscopy recovery period is significantly shorter but in any case you should take some precautions.
Pain. You are expected to have abdominal pain up to 5-7 days after surgery. For sure, if you undergone laparoscopy, your pain is not so bad, as you have only small incision in your abdomen.
Physical activity. No heavy lifting for 2-3 weeks after surgery. Gradually you may return to exercising but be moderate.
Diet. You should return to your normal diet step by step starting from eating smaller portions but more frequently. You should drink many liquids and avoid constipation.